Crossroads legend Jane Rossingtons husband announces stars Alzheimers diagnosis
Heather Chasen stars in Crossroads as Valerie Pollard in 1982
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Jane Rossington, 79, is best known to television viewers for her role as Jill Richardson in Crossroads, where she played the on-screen daughter of Noele Gordon’s Meg Richardson. The on-screen star, who tied the knot with her husband David Dunger in 1972, has been living with dementia.
Jane’s husband David spoke about her diagnosis in a radio interview with his presenter brother Rob, on Felixstowe Radio on June 8.
He explained his wife was previously left “completely lost and befuddled” after a ski trip.
David explained: “It started about six years ago… We used to go on a week’s skiing holiday every year. And we were somewhere in the Alps and it was lovely.
“And she went down in the lift early and I said ‘I’ll meet you at such-and-such a restaurant and if you’re first I’d like a large beer please, and if I’m there first I’ll get you a glass of wine’.
“Well, that was the first time I noticed she really lost it. She went down the mountain, she didn’t go back to the hotel she didn’t turn up at the restaurant… she was completely lost and befuddled.”
He went on: “Then little things started to happen, she came more and more distracted. Her memory went and she became less [physically] able.
“And it was so distressing to see it happen.”
David added: “There are little periods where there’s a degree of stability and then, like over the last two weeks, there’s noticeable deterioration.”
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia in the UK, according to the NHS.
It is a progressive condition, which means the symptoms develop gradually over many years and eventually become more severe. It affects multiple brain functions.
The first sign of Alzheimer’s disease is usually minor memory problems.
According to the NHS, it is most commonly found in people over the age of 65.
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Jane is best known for her role in the series Crossroads.
She starred in the soap from its first episode in 1964 through to its very last in 1988.
The actress reprised her character for a new version of the saga in 2001.
The show ultimately departed ITV screens for the last time in 2003.
Her other roles include a cameo as Jill in Channel 4’s gritty Brookside and longer-running parts in ITV medical drama Emergency Ward 10 and radio soap The Archers.
Until recently she was also still working in several major theatre productions and making guest appearances on shows such as This Morning, The Paul O’Grady Show and Blankety Blankety Blank.
Jane is to be portrayed by Antonia Bernath in the forthcoming ITV drama about Noele Gordon, Nolly.
Helena Bonham Carter will star as Noele in the Russell T Davies penned three part series.
Express.co.uk has contacted Jane Rossington’s representatives for further comment.
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