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Julie Goodyear’s husband says she is fading away

Julie Goodyear as Bet Lynch holding a glass of champagne

The husband of Coronation Street star Julie Goodyear has said she is “slowly fading away” after being diagnosed with dementia.

Scott Brand spoke to The Mirror ahead of a new TV advert supporting the Alzheimer’s Society highlighting how the illness can cause people to "die again, and again, and again" voiced by Colin Firth, titled The Long Goodbye.

The short film shows a grieving son at his mum’s funeral remembering different stages of her life.

Brand went public with his wife’s illness last year, this week he gave an update on Goodyear’s health.

He said:  "I miss the fun-loving wife that Julie had always been - the larger-than-life personality that brightened up everywhere she went, and the smile that lit up every room.

"All of this is now slowly fading away and it's extremely painful for me to watch this deterioration."

Brand told the publication Goodyear is now starting to recognise people and he is missing the sparks of being in a relationship.

"Not being able to spontaneously go out as husband and wife, holding hands as we stroll along, going for meals together and going shopping - all these losses for me symbolise the long goodbye,” he explained.

Goodyear was a regular in ITV’s Coronation Street between 1966 and 2003 where she played Bet Lynch who became the soap’s longest-serving character and known for her stand-out fashion sense.

"Julie has always been extremely glamorous, going nowhere without her make-up," Brand said.

"But now the lipsticks and make-up go unworn, and clothes are no longer of interest, especially the leopard print."

Brand initially gave up his career when his wife was diagnosed, but now the illness has progressed he can no longer look after her.

“Caring for Julie is my priority, but my health was being affected and as a lone carer I felt it was killing me. I would advise anyone going through this journey to accept help straight away,” he said.

Brand now has support from a Dementia Advisor through the Alzheimer’s Society, which has been a ‘lifeline’. 

Kate Lee, Alzheimer's Society's CEO, said the campaign "seeks to tell the unvarnished truth about the devastation caused by dementia, and it is very much informed by people affected by the condition.

"But there is hope," she added. "Alzheimer's Society, through its support services, is there for people affected again and again, as they face the grim reality of the long goodbye."

[ 1 in 11 people over the age of 65 have dementia in the UK. ]

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