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TV star speaks of ‘year of hell’

Former Goodies and Springwatch star Bill Oddie has spoken of his year of hell as he fought off lithium poisoning.

The former Birmingham schoolboy, who grew up in Quinton, said he had been “nigh on comatose” for nearly a year but had been saved by London’s Royal Free Hospital.

But the 79-year-old said that, after months of “avoiding life and people”, he was now on the mend.

READ MORE: Comedian Bill Oddie impresses pupils as he returns to his former Edgbaston school

He told his 78,000 Twitter followers: “For nearly a year I have been nigh on comatose. Knocking on Heaven’s door with lithium poisoning. Saved by consultant at Royal Free Hospital.

“Then months mostly avoiding life and people. Depressed or asleep. Scaring my family and myself. No joy and no hope.

“Then ten days ago everything changed . Energy returned. No longer intimidated by tech, politics ,or the world as it is.

“Loving the Euros, thrilled by “Lady Parts” on Ch4, revelling in my garden, friends, family and Sandy the dog. How?! Why? Meds, magic , or miracle?”

Last year, Oddie took to social media to reveal he had been “very ill.”

He wrote: “Just so you know, I have been very ill most of this summer. Lithium toxicity. Almost fatal!”

Oddie has spoken previously about having bipolar disorder, for which lithium is a common treatment.

It may also be used for depression, which Oddie has also had.

He tweeted: “I am still here but very confused about most things! But then aren’t many of us,”

“IT fuddles my brain. Confusion. Will I return? I Really dunno. I do hope so. Please wish me luck. XX.”

Oddie was born in Rochdale in Lancashire but attended King Edward’s School in Edgbaston from 1954 to 1960.

He returned there in May, 2015, telling pupils: “King Edward’s School is where I discovered what really mattered to me for the rest of my life.

“That is what a good school can do. It is an opportunity that should not be bought, it should be a right.”



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