Denise Welch Spills on Addiction, Depression, and Playing the ‘Virgin Mary’ To the 1975 Stans

After four wild decades in the limelight, Denise Welch is hailed as a seasoned TV icon, a reformed partygoer, a fearless voice on ‘Loose Women’, a rockstar mom, and a true survivor.

Who is Denise Welch?

Denise Welch is a British actress, television presenter, and author. She is known for her roles in various British television series, including “Coronation Street,” “Waterloo Road,” and “Loose Women.” Welch has also been open about her struggles with addiction and mental health issues, using her platform to advocate for awareness and support.

Personal Life

Denise Welch was born on May 22, 1958, in Tynemouth, England. She grew up in a working-class family and attended drama school in Manchester. Welch has been married twice: first to David Easter in 1983, with whom she has a son named Matthew, and then to Tim Healy in 1988, with whom she has two sons named Louis and Thomas. She and Healy divorced in 2012 after 24 years of marriage. In 2013, she married Lincoln Townley. Welch has been open about her struggles with depression, alcoholism, and addiction, seeking treatment and speaking publicly about her experiences to raise awareness. She is an advocate for mental health awareness and has written books on her experiences, including “Starting Over: The Making of John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s Double Fantasy” and “The Madness of Grief: A Memoir of Love and Loss.” Welch has appeared in numerous television shows, stage productions, and reality TV programs, gaining fame for her roles in “Coronation Street” and “Loose Women.” She is also known for her philanthropic work, supporting various charities and organizations focused on mental health and addiction recovery. In recent years, Welch has continued to work in the entertainment industry while also using her platform to promote causes she is passionate about.

Addiction, depression, and playing Mary

Before rehearsals, in a dressing room located above the cozy Hope Mill Theatre in Manchester, the 65-year-old is determined to perfect her comeback to the role that marked the beginning of her career – a stage actress.

In the debut of The Gap, penned by playwright Jim Cartwright renowned for the heartfelt and gritty storytelling in works like The Rise and Fall of Little Voice and Road, she takes on the character of Corral, who reminisces about her youth in Swinging ’60s London.

Denise Welch jokingly laments, “There are some lines that only Jim Cartwright would come up with.” “I’d be like, ‘Oh my God, Jim, I can’t wrap my head around that line because only you could write it!'” “He once asked me, ‘Would you have spoken to William Shakespeare like this?'”

“And I replied, ‘Absolutely!'” Had she been an actress centuries ago, there’s little doubt Welch would have fearlessly voiced her opinions to the Bard. This is all part of her persona – the outspoken, uncensored, playful Geordie matriarch. While some see Welch as a national treasure for her authenticity, others view her as a loudmouth irritant.

Welch’s acting credits include roles in Coronation Street, Waterloo Road, Hollyoaks, and Soldier Soldier, among other dramas. However, her most enduring role has been on ITV’s Loose Women, where she has been a panelist for 22 years, portraying herself.

Known for her outspoken and controversial views, both on the show and social media, Welch has not shied away from discussing topics such as COVID-19 restrictions, particularly when they impacted her elderly father and others living alone.

In addition to her television career, Welch is also the author of three candid memoirs. Her latest work, “The Unwelcome Visitor” released in 2020, delves into the depths of her clinical depression, detailing her struggles with alcohol and drugs in an attempt to cope, ultimately exacerbating her condition.


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