Many years ago in Dublin young RONAN KEATING dreamt of saving the world (just one career option he considered) but the ture of pop stardom proved too strong. Read on to discover just how close he came to becoming PC Keating...

Why did you decide to get involved in the Reach For The Sky project (Sky TV's scheme to help teenagers decide what they want to do in life)?
I was approached and jumped at the oppoetunity. Boyzone can influence the younger audience in a positive way and I'm in the perfect position to help. I think it's a great idea.

What did you want to be when you are little?
I wanted to be a fire engine!

Um,OH,Whatever...(TOTP looks at Boyzone's press lady with concern - has Ronan lost the plot?)
(Laughs.) Not really. I wanted to be everything. I remember one time I wanted to be a lawyers, then I wanted to be a movie star and then I wanted to be a Superman. The thing I really wanted to be just before I joined the band was a policeman. I had all the pamphlets, filled out the application forms and sent them in. Then I went to the Boyzone auditions and before I knew it I was in the band and six years later here I am.

You represented Ireland at 200m and 400m - any regrets you didn't go into athletics?
No, I do pay a lot of attention to athletics on TV and I'd like to go to a meet every now and again cos I love the buzz of the whole thing. Sitting on the line, your  adrenaline pumping, there's nothing like it. I had  my fingers in a lot of pies, I never knew where I was going to go and look at me now - I landed on my feet with Boyzone.

Nicky Westlife nerrly had a career in football. The two of you have a lot of similarities...
Yeah, and he also wanted to be the police! We were very similar people when we were younger and now he's doing exactly what I did and I can help him along with that.

Were you ever advised by a careers officer to do something completely different?
No. I was kind of a waste of space for them. They were always like, 'You'll never be anything.' Not that they ever actually said it but I got that impression. I'd love to drive up now - no, that's not fair, it's not nice to say that. I was always on another planet cos I was more into sports and music than academic work so I was pushed aside. Luckily I was strong enrong enough to deal with that.

Did you do odd jobs around the house for extra pocket money?
No, I wasn't too good around the house. I'd just drop my bag inside the door and I'd be out with the boys playing football. When I was older I joined the band and we'd be in the grape jamming.

What was the worst thing about selling shoes?
People's smelly feet!

How  were you with the money as a kid - were you a saver or a spender?
A spender - it used to burn holes in my pockets. I spent my money on anything and everything. When I was younger it was Star Wars fingers and I'm still buying them now! I've got all the new ones, they're going to be collectors' items one day. I used to get 20 pounds a day from the shoe shop and I used to spend it all on clothes. Now I spend all my money on cars.

Can you remember a phrase you learnt in a foreign language at school?
'Excusez-moi moniseur, je voudrais aller a la toilette s'il vous plait? (Laughing.) That was the only thing I learnt cos I always wanted to get out of the class! So in every language possible I learnt, 'Can I go to the toilet please?' (Laughs more.)

If you had to put a CU together what interests would you list?
House, cars, music, sports, I could go on forever! Reading, boats, McDonald's, Sky TV, there's just so much stuff.