Jill Halfpenny has opened up about her secret battle with alcoholism.

Jill Halfpenny reveals secret alcohol battle

Jill Halfpenny reveals secret alcohol battle

The 48-year-old actress has been sober for over a decade but admitted she struggled to control her drinking in the past as she battled to come to terms with the loss of her father, who died when she was just four years old.

In her new memoir 'A Life Reimagined: My Journey of Hope in the Midst of Loss', she writes: "I began to see that I became a different person when I drank and I didn’t always like who I became.

"For a long time, alcohol had helped me escape, to stop thinking. Conversely, I thought it also helped me access all the things that lay dormant inside me."

Jill also explained how another actress at AA helped her to cope.

She said: "As I calmed myself down, I noticed a woman walking around, asking a few of the attendees if they would be happy to do a reading. She looked radiant, happy… ‘I want what she has!’ I thought.

"I took a closer look and realised I recognised her. She was an actress. She looked at me and smiled warmly. I wanted to cry so bad.

"I experienced something I never have before – people, strangers, sharing how they feel. No small talk or pretence, just real authentic feelings.

"They were talking about how their insides didn’t match their outsides, how they struggled with feelings of unworthiness – and for the first time in my life, I felt completely seen.”

Jill's dad Colin passed away at the age of 36 after suffering a heart attack during a game of football.

Meanwhile, Jill recently revealed she has found love again following the death of her partner Matt Janes in 2017, after he also had a fatal heart attack.

Speaking on 'The One Show', Jill said: "When you lose a partner, a romantic relationship, it can sometimes feel slightly like a betrayal if you move on and it's not.

"You're absolutely allowed to be happy again. If you do the process and the healing and the work, you can go into another relationship and be happy again.

"If you haven't managed to do that work, there'll always be a part of you somewhere else. I feel I do deserve to be happy and I do feel happy and it's really nice to be in love again.

"When my partner died, I really wanted my son to know you can be in a lot of pain and have a lot of suffering but you can get through it.

"I think it's an important lesson for a child. Say to them, I will be OK, this will take some time but it will be OK. I didn't want to hide it away from him.

"I wanted to be honest and say I'm struggling but I will be OK. I hope he's learned a lot from that."