AMANDA Barrie has revealed she signed up for Celebrity Big Brother to "take her mind off dying".
The former Coronation Street star entered the house last night alongside her fellow celebs including journalist Rachel Johnson, Keeping Up With The Kardashians star Malika Haqq and Made In Chelsea star Ashley James.
The 82-year-old is best known for playing Alma Sedgewick in the ITV soap for 20 years and joked that appearing on the Channel 5 reality show was "occupational therapy".
She also revealed she would spend her fee on her home care bills when she's older.
Speaking to The Mirror, she said: "I had no intention of doing it , but then I thought it could pay for my care home.
"It would be nice to have that independence."
"What keeps me working? I think it's occupational therapy to stop me thinking about death, really."
Amanda – who has also starred in Benidorm – joked that she thought she'd gone "entirely mad" by signing up to the show but that she didn't want to miss out of the "adventure".
“I vary between thinking, ‘Have I gone entirely mad at my age?’ to, ‘Is this going to be fun?’. The thing is, when you get to 82 and someone asks you to do something, it would be foolish to say no," she said.
“It’s a new adventure for me. I mean, what else am I going to do? I’ll just be sitting at home, so I thought I might as well have a go.”
She also quipped that she felt like she was going into a care home when she left her wife of three years Hilary Bonner to go to the studios.
"I did have this moment when my partner, Hilary, put me in the car with two suitcases where I thought, 'Are you sure you're going to Big Brother or has she sent you packing to a care home now?'
“I think Big Brother will be good training for the care home, anyway. I may as well have a go at it now.”
Amanda said she hoped her time on the show would give her family a laugh after some tough times.
She said: “I’ve had a lot of tragedies in my family recently, young ones and old ones.
“I think they all need a bit of a holiday together, so that’s what I will spend some of the money on.
“My family have all been incredible. They actually did say to me after all the tragedies we’ve had, ‘For God’s sake go in because you’ll make such a fool of yourself, it’ll take our mind off everything’.”
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