Flickering David Beckham looks thrilled to be voted best man at dad Ted’s wedding to lawyer Hilary Meredith this weekend.
The father-son duo wearing matching black suits looked closer than ever family bash At the Temple in London – even more special in light of a painful rift that threatened to tear the family apart 15 years ago.
The doting father’s determination to see his son succeed on the pitch was a big factor in David’s stellar football career, but when Ted split with wife Sandra in 2002, after 33 years of marriage, the relationship between the pair Got cold.
David’s transfer to Real Madrid in 2003 increased the physical distance between them, and Ted, now 72, feared he had “lost” her forever.
His revealing autobiography – David Beckham: my son – further damaged their relationship, and at times the situation seemed irreparable.
But when Ted suffered a near-fatal heart attack in 2007, the pair reunited — and, as wedding photos Confirm, family ties are now stronger than ever.
Growing up in Leytonstone, east London, David inherited his father’s passion for Manchester United and trained at the city’s Bobby Charlton School.
Ted, a kitchen fitter, supported his son’s dreams of playing for the club and, after signing for the youth team at age 14, he and Sandra spent 200 miles each weekend to watch him play. will travel to
The proud father kept every award, medal and trophy, and every football bar won by his son, and life revolved around David’s burgeoning career – a family vacation even cut short so that he could play a match. to come back.
“we were used to” Manchester United And for David’s career and we fed that addiction every week,” Ted previously said.
While David rose from young player to global superstar, he often paid tribute to his father, posting a Father’s Day tribute such as: “Thank you for the support you have given me over the years.”
But in 2002, when Ted’s marriage to hairdresser Sandra fell apart, David, 46, and his sisters, Lynn, 49, and Joan, 38, blamed their father for the split.
In his autobiography, Beckham: My World, published in 2001, David stated that Ted was never particularly gentle towards Sandra.
He wrote, “He loves my mother, but he never loves her in front of my two sisters and me. He is quite rude and can be sarcastic.”
“He also gets easily provoked… The quality I love least about myself is my anger. I think I get it from my dad.”
Speaking of the divorce, Ted has since admitted: “I know they all had grown up quite a bit but it was still kind of a shock to them.”
Madrid transfer’s ‘sledgehammer’ blow
A year later, their father-son relationship suffered another setback when David left Manchester United for Real Madrid.
Ted found out about the transfer – which he protested – from David’s agent and said the news hit him “like a sledgehammer”.
“I don’t know if I can mend my relationship with him,” Ted, who was devastated at the time, said.
“We hardly talked. My biggest problem was not being invited to sign them. I’m choking, really.”
“I’ve been there since day one and it really pissed me off. I’ll never forgive him for that.”
I have been there since day one and not being invited for his signing was really bothering me. i will never forgive him for that
The physical movement created more distance between them, Ted was no longer able to attend matches to see his son play on a weekly basis.
“I’ve lost her – it seems to me,” he said. “We’ve lost that comradeship between us. It’ll be worse now that he’s gone to Madrid.”
“I still have to work and I can’t afford to fly to Madrid every week. When he was at Manchester United, I could get in the car and drive down the street. I just can’t do that.” . My biggest fear is that it is over for us.”
During Euro 2004, Ted traveled to Portugal on his ticket and not as part of his son’s crew.
A year later, the publication of Ted’s book hit another nail in the coffin, with David furious that he had not been consulted about its content prior to its release.
Discussing their divorce, Ted said that the thing that bothered him the most was the thought of losing all the football memories he had built up over the years.
He also claimed that his son’s fame had contributed to the partition.
“All the hype, all the tension, all the attention – it was not a world we were accustomed to and it was very difficult,” he said.
“Till the end, we only had football. We just parted ways.”
Ted also found it painful to be away from his three grandchildren, Brooklyn, now 22, Romeo, 19, and Cruz, 16 – while Victoria Beckham’s parents, Jackie and Tony Adams, were still in their lives.
near-fatal heart attack
Their cold relationship continued through the 2006 World Cup, when David sent his father a ticket but refused to meet him.
But in September 2007, everything changed when 58-year-old Ted suffered a near-fatal heart attack.
Paramedics fought for three hours to save her and she was told that she had “died” in an ambulance while being taken to the hospital before being taken into surgery to open an artery.
David – who had just moved to the LA Galaxy – flew home from the States immediately and reached his father’s bedside where he spent several hours.
The traumatic event prompted both men to put their grievances behind them.
A source told The Sun: “David was traveling alone and had plenty of time to focus on what had happened.”
After making a full recovery, Ted insists on going back to work five days a week – although David offers to support him – buying him a Jaguar and paying off his mortgage.
The pair have remained close ever since, and in 2019, they made a short Father’s Day film for David’s whiskey brand Haig Club, where they talked about their bond.
David told his father: “At school, I would say ‘Let’s go to the park’, or ‘Let’s go to the garden’, and you would never say … what is important to me is to be present [my children], When I am at home, I take him to school every morning.”
Ted added: ,You turned out just the way I wanted you to.”
Despite their improved relationship, a short row at a christening party in 2019 threatened to upset the apple cart.
Ted and Hilary were invited to celebrate the baptism of the couple’s two youngest children, Cruz, then 14, and Harper – but Hilary’s daughter Charlotte, 29, was reportedly left off the invite list.
Ted is said to have had a “feud” with Victoria, who reportedly refused to come to him on the grounds that they “couldn’t fit into another”.
an insider told Sun: “The bottom line is Victoria’s mistrust of bringing an outsider to the fold.”
But the row quickly followed him, and on Father’s Day last year, David posted: “Happy Father’s Day dad. I love you. Thank you for giving me the drive and work ethic to succeed.”
This weekend she showed a united front at Ted’s wedding to millionaire solicitor Hillary—whom she met in 2019 through her charity work for Army Veterans at Broughton House Veterans Care Village.
The family was joined by Victoria, Romeo and girlfriend Mia Regan, 19, Cruz and Harper, although Brooklyn remained in the US.
“It was a very small private affair with only a few close family and friends including David, Victoria and three children,” a source said.
“David was the nicest guy and did all the normal things a best man does like holding rings and he was also a speechwriter.
“Ted is in his 70s and Hillary is in her 60s. It was a second marriage for both of them, so they didn’t want to disturb it but the whole family was happy there.”
Ted was undoubtedly thanking his lucky stars her boy Was back by his side for the special occasion.