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Ex-Corrie star Craig Charles opens up about crack cocaine use and fallout with tragic brother

 

Actor Craig Charles has spoken of the pain over the death of his brother whilst he was in Australia on I’m A Celebrity – admitting the pair were not speaking at the time.

The former Coronation Street star recalled the highs and lows of his career including the death of his brother Dean and his use of crack cocaine in the back of a car.

Mirror Online reports that when referring to Dean’s death in 2014, Craig said: “We’d fallen out, you know, we’d had a family disagreement and we’d fallen out. We’d not been speaking.

“He texted me a couple of times before I went in (I’m A Celebrity) saying ‘Craig, it’s Dean, just wanna chat, blah, blah, blah’.

“And I’ve kind of ignored him. I thought ‘I can’t really deal with this right now. What I’ll do is, I’ll go in the jungle, do that, come back out and we’ll all be together by Christmas’.

“And, um … that never happened.”

Craig grew up on the Cantril Farm estate which is now known as Stockbridge Village .

Speaking to John Bishop for a rare TV interview on ‘W’, 53-year-old Craig also told how he shared a bedroom with his brother for the first 16 years of his life and he “always fought my battles because he was bigger than me”.

Crying as he looked at an old photo of him together with his brother, he added: “We used to share a bedroom together and we used to share our hopes and dreams and like plans for the future and our disappointments and everything.”

Craig Charles, who is one of the 10 contestants confirmed to heading into the Australian jungle for the ITV show I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here!

Dean was a policeman but his job “was not viable anymore” when he stood by Craig over false rape allegations. He then became a teacher and cycled to work on the day he passed away.

“He was fit as a fiddle, cycle into work, got into the changing rooms, dropped dead. He had a blood clot which reached his heart, boof, dead.”

Dean Charles, late brother of Liverpool actor Craig Charles, receiving a commendation for rescuing a woman and her children from a burning flat

Craig, who is now riding high with success with his own funk and soul radio show on BBC 6Music and a new series of Red Dwarf, faced another setback in 2006 whilst working on Coronation Street.

He was pictured in the Mirror smoking crack cocaine in a car and a stint in The Priory followed.

He referred to his drug use as “one of the lowest points of my life” but said at the time he was struggling to cope with the death of his parents.

Craig said: “I was dead lucky that I had a wife, Jackie, who I adore and adores me, I had, I had kids who know what I’m really like, and I had a reason to get better, if you know what I mean.

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“I had a job that I loved and I had enough people who knew what I was like to say, let’s care about him, let’s get him well, rather than let’s sack him.

“Do you know what, it was me repeating the same old behaviour again.

“When me mum died I got into drugs; when me dad died, I did again, and it was just a case of … I was like stuck in this little flat in Manchester missing my family, working like 14 hours a day, then travelling vast amounts of motorways all the time like that. So you know, it was just a way of coping like.

“I’m dead addictive. You know, you’ve got positive and you’ve got negative addictions, haven’t you? So like I am now addicted to like positive addictions, you know. Like I work a lot; I love funk and soul, I get obsessive about it.”

* John Bishop In Conversation With Craig Charles is on W on Thursday at 9pm.




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