Noel Edmonds has spoken about bouncing back “very quickly” after being pushed to the brink of suicide when he fell victim to financial fraud.
After a career of highs where he was a huge TV star things took a turn for the worse and in January 2005, Noel said he was taken "to the brink of emotional annihilation” by his financial situation.
Noel has now began a lawsuit seeking around £60m in damages over claims that his firm, Unique Group, was pushed into failure by fraudsters at the Reading branch of HBOS, which Lloyds acquired at the height of the financial crisis.
After coming out of the I’m A Celebrity jungle, Noel was asked about a life of extreme lows and extreme highs and if that made him grateful for his experience.
He said: “I’m not grateful that I got to that dark place, I’m relieved that rather than continue down, I seem to have found the trampoline and I came back very quickly.
“But I’m acutely aware now of what that dark space represents and I would ask people to be very respectful of anyone who says they’re severely depressed and not ridicule people who have attempted to take their life.
“There’s a shocking statistic that someone in the UK takes their life every 90 minutes and I would just like people to be aware of that with people around them so they spot what’s going on so they can get serious professional help quickly, because it’s no good saying to someone ‘Pull yourself together’ because you’re not in that space."
Noel also said he intended to use some of the money from his £600,000 I’m A Celebrity to help people who are depressed or struggling in their lives, including other banking victims.
He added: “I’m so pleased that there’s been a major shift in the last 12 months where we’re all talking about mental health. I must admit I don’t make the division between mental health and health. I think it’s health and wellness. But the fact is we’re now prepared to talk about it.
“I know I’m helping a few people. I’m hoping to set up a charity next year, which with what’s happened to me in the jungle will help, in terms of I’m going to fund it myself. It’s for victims of banking crime, because I’m aware of people who have had their lives ruined by a small number of people who have brought 10 years of austerity in this country.”
Noel spoke about his woes in an interview in June 2017, and at the time he told the Press Association: “Until these criminals took me to the brink of emotional annihilation, I had always felt those who opt out by taking their own lives were selfish and cowardly.
“But having been cast into that bottomless dark space devoid of logic and reason, I have a much deeper understanding of life without hope.
“I seek no sympathy and feel no shame in admitting that on the evening of January 18th 2005 I attempted to end the overwhelming mental pain which had consumed my whole being.
“The fact that I did not become another suicide statistic is solely due to the swift response of a Devon ambulance crew and the compassionate support of the Priory in Bristol.”
Noel Edmonds’ life and times
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