Donna Air has confessed she was a precocious youngster.

The TV presenter and actress found fame as a 10-year-old in the cast of the hit TV series Byker Grove along with Ant and Dec.

But she said: "When you work and earn money as a child, you need to be confident but it can make you a bit precocious and I think I was a bit of a pain for a while when I was young.

"I've always earned my own money and enjoy being independent. It's how I was brought up."

Donna went on to be a presenter on shows such as The Big Breakfast and ITV's Popstars: The Rivals Extra, as well as appearing in dramas including Lynda La Plante's Supply And Demand and films The Mummy Returns and Bad Day.

She said: "I feel I'm at a lovely time in my life. I'm 35 this summer and although I don't give age much thought, I like the feeling now that I'm more confident and sure of myself."

She added: "I have changed a lot over the past 10 years, of course. Life experiences can, at times, be quite humbling but you learn from them. But I like the changes in my life and what kind of person they've made me into. I'm very open, not as judgmental as I was in my twenties, and a lot more compassionate."

The Newcastle-born mother-of-one remained tight-lipped about her romance with the Duchess of Cambridge's younger brother James Middleton, saying: "Things are going well... we get on very well."

:: Donna Air's debut jewellery collection 'Little Bird' is sold exclusively by QVC. Visit www.qvc.com