Music mogul Simon Cowell has opened up about the circumstances that surrounded his initial romance with Lauren Silverman, who went on to give birth to their son Eric.

Silverman was married to Cowell's friend, property developer Andrew Silverman, when it is believed she started an affair with Cowell.  News of their relationship broke after she became pregnant in July 2013.

In an interview with the Mail on Sunday Event magazine, the X Factor judge admitted: "I'm not proud of the circumstances, I can't hold my head up about it."

He added that the pregnancy was both unplanned and unexpected and he heard about it when he was called out of a meeting to take an "urgent call" from Lauren Silverman.

Whatever about the initial shock, after Cowell attended her first baby scan he felt "unbelievably protective of both of them. I just absolutely wanted him. I just hadn’t known that before."

Eric, who was named after Cowell's late father, was born on Saint Valentine's Day 2014. According to Cowell, he taught the ten-month-old to share and say please and thank you.

With a personal worth estimated at €500 million, Cowell revealed that he does not like the idea of leaving his vast fortune to his son.

"I don't like the idea you just sort of pass it down from generation to generation," he admitted. "I mean, I find that quite disgusting.

"No one ever gave me a penny and I believe part of my drive was to do with the fact I had nothing to lose. That gives you a lot of energy."