You'd Have to Be Missing a Couple of Chromosomes NOT to Find Her Attractive; EXCLUSIVE: MARY'S MAN .. AND THE Pounds 10,000 FACELIFT

Article excerpt


MARY Archer's close friend Professor Stephen Feldberg last night talked about their relationship.

And he admitted: "You'd have to be missing a few chromosomes if you're male and you don't find her attractive."

He refused to confirm or deny that he was romantically involved with Mary. But he said: "We have overlapping professional interests and we've known each other for 30 years.

"She is a very attractive woman. I don't know if I'm special to her, you must ask Mary that.

"If she was willing to separate from Jeffrey I would have pursued her in other ways. But it is clear to me that she is never going to dump Jeffrey, however much he deserves it.

"She's married and she's not about to leave Jeffrey. Why? I don't know. If she left him I might ask her."

The couple met at a science conference in 1972 and have been friends ever since. She has visited him in New York's Long Island, where he lives, and in March 1998 they went on a working trip to Geneva together.

Friends describe Prof Feldberg as good-looking and charismatic with a brilliant brain. He's a keen sailor and fisherman and is currently on an extended fishing holiday in New Zealand.

Asked whether he was romantically involved with Mary he said: "I'm not saying anything. I have a definite love affair with trout and you can write that if you want. I'm not really interested in discussing my relationship with Mary with anyone."

But he hit out at disgraced Tory Jeffrey claiming he had humiliated his wife. "I think he's a jerk. I'm not in Jeffrey Archer's fan club. I'm very annoyed with him because he's humiliated her.

"Mary deserves fame on her own but she gets notoriety from him. I'd like to know why she doesn't leave him. You'd have to ask Mary how she feels about his affairs (with women) but that's part of the public humiliation he's put her through."

When asked about his stay with her in England, her visiting him in New York and their trip to Geneva he refused to comment but said: "I don't want to be so presumptuous as to say I'm someone special in her life. It's something you'd have to ask her. A lot of people have stayed at her home, including Baroness Thatcher and Dennis."

Prof Feldberg, who has won awards for scientific research at the Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York, met Mary 30 years ago and they have worked on several papers together. He said he hadn't spoken to her for a while and insisted he now had a girlfriend.

At the guest house where he is currently staying in New Zealand, he said he had met Jeffrey Archer several times. He went on: "I've read a couple of his early books but I got turned-off because I'm not a big fan of his. There are books higher up on my to-read list."

Handsome Prof Feldberg is a straight-talking, matter-of-fact man's man. Enjoying a quiet unassuming lifestyle, he couldn't be more different to Jeffrey Archer, an insincere, cheating, scheming, smarmy liar.

An athlete and keen squash player, the 64-year-old thinks nothing of spending weeks fishing in some of the remotest parts of New Zealand and Australia. Highly intelligent and an academic with the highest qualifications, it's no wonder he and Mary Archer - who married Jeffrey in 1966 - forged an instant friendship.

In March 1998 they both attended a 50th anniversary party for Rolex watch managing director Andre Heiniger in Geneva, Switzerland, as part of a working holiday. Just two months earlier, Mary underwent extensive facial plastic surgery. To preserve her chiselled features she spent pounds 10,000 on a major facelift, lifting her neck, jawline, cheeks, brow and eyes. …