Who'll find love on FEMAIL's first virtual date?

Who’ll find love on FEMAIL’s first virtual date? This week it’s Jemma, 44 and Philip, 42, but will romance be on the cards?

  • Every week FEMAIL sends a couple on a blind date and asks them to report back
  • Jemma, 44, and Philip, 42, took part in FEMAIL’s first virtual date amid lockdown
  • Would you like us to find you a date? Are you a singleton, or is there someone you’d like to send on a blind date? Email: [email protected] 

Jemma, 44, (pictured) is a make-up artist, who has been single for five years


Dating Past?

My last long-term relationship was five years ago. It’s hard to meet people because I travel with my job and often work in Hawaii — I suspect I might have given up on love.

I have been on a few first dates, but haven’t followed them up because we didn’t click romantically.

Pre-Date Nerves?

Vital statistics 

Single for five years, no children.

Current Role

Make-up artist.

Would Like To Meet

Someone kind, respectful and educated. Some guys seem to assume toilet humour and a love of computer games are attractive — they aren’t. 

I’ve been in lockdown for more than a week now, and the prospect of a virtual date gave me a glimmer of hope. I spent the evening preparing myself to video chat, via an app, with a glass of champagne. I styled my hair and applied my new make-up. It was exciting to make an effort.

First Impressions?

I asked for Phil to call me — I think it’s important for the gentleman to make the first move. But he didn’t get off to the best start when he called five minutes late. I’m a stickler for time-keeping.

I was sitting at my desk wearing a lovely formal dress. I had chosen my outfit carefully, but Phil appeared on my smartphone in a beanie hat and seemed much more laid back about the date than I was. I was a bit surprised.

In my eyes, although it was online, it was still a date.

Easy To Talk To?

We spoke for more than an hour and both had a lot to say. We discovered we share the same taste in music; neither of us is interested in modern music, and we both love the Rat Pack and Motown.

Embarrassing Moments?

Yes, when my cat, Merlin, crashed our date. Half an hour in, he started meowing loudly outside the door. I had to let him in. After that I was a little distracted because he curled up in the middle of the bed as if he was keeping an eye on us.

Did Sparks Fly?

Not for me. While we got along, and it felt surprisingly natural video-chatting, it was as friends only. My usual type has the looks and humour of Matt LeBlanc, from Friends, with the razzamatazz of John Barrowman. I totally appreciate that’s why I’m still single, of course.

Jemma’s verdict: 8/10 

Liked: Our shared passion for music.

Regrets: None, it was a treat to e-meet someone nice.

See him again? Yes

What do you think he thought of you?

I don’t think he fancied me at all, frankly. He’s got a type, as I suspect we all have, and I’m not her. But he did text me straight after the date to thank me. I’d still like to meet up as friends in London once the lockdown is over, so we can go and listen to some music we both like. I’m really missing concerts.

Would your family like him?

Yes, he’s a nice guy, there’s nothing not to like about Phil.

Philip, 42, (pictured) is an events manager who has been single for five years


Dating Past?

I haven’t had a serious relationship in the past five years. I don’t mean to sound big-headed, but people do wonder why I’m single.

My career has always come first — I’m freelance, and if I don’t take on a commission, someone else will. I’ve been on lots of dates, though. Last year I was managing an event at Wimbledon and the girl I was seeing asked me to go away with her in the middle of the tournament. Work won, I’m afraid.

Pre-Date Nerves?

I’m not usually a nervous person, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a bit nervy. When you do something for the first time you can never be certain what is going to happen. I wasn’t sure how I’d come across; I am naturally expressive and when I chat I do wander and use my arms a lot, which I’ve been ticked off about before.

First Impressions?

Vital statistics

Single for five years, no children.

Current role 

Events manager.

Would like to meet 

Someone well-rounded who is happy to spend time at home. I usually attract party girls who love going out — but pull a face at the idea of going for a walk.

Jemma looked fantastic, she had made a real effort. Straight away I could tell we’re very similar. We both have freelance careers that take us all over the world, and that helped us to bond.

Easy To Talk To?

Usually I have to rein myself in and remind myself it isn’t all about me, but we were evenly matched in the conversation stakes. It was heartening to discover we both have a real passion for music. I play the piano and she has a friend who plays at the Savoy. I said we should meet there for drinks after the lockdown to listen to him play.

Embarrassing Moments?

I suspect I didn’t make a positive first impression. I’m not good with technology and couldn’t get the app to work. I thought I had made a video call, but hadn’t, then I tried again and cut her off. In the end, she called me back — all in all it was mortifying.

Did Sparks Fly?

Philip’s verdict: 8/10

Liked: Jemma is really easy to talk to.

Regrets: I kept talking with my hands.

See her again? Yes.

It’s hard to say on a video date, but I’d like to see her again, that much I know. We’ve agreed to see each other again in London after the lockdown.

What do you think she thought of you?

Well, that’s the million-dollar question. If pushed I suspect she’d say I’m someone who talks a lot, is quirky and an alright guy.

Would your family like her?

Yes, and my friends would, too. In my social circle I’m the eccentric, cool one with the crazy job — and Jemma is the female equivalent of me. 

Fancy a date with an eligible single like you? Or would you like to play cupid for someone else? Email your — or their — details and a photo to [email protected]dailymail.co.uk

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