Timothy West opens up on wife Prunella’s memory battle ‘It’s sad for us both’

Timothy West discusses Prunella Scales's 'memory problem'

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The film, stage and television star reflected on his wife’s condition on Love Your Weekend with Alan Titchmarsh after being asked how Pru was doing. Despite admitting her memory loss has been “sad”, the 87-year-old remarked that he is “very lucky” as he and Prunella are still able to get “out and about” ahead of their 60th wedding anniversary next year.

The actress, best known for her role in Fawlty Towers, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2014.

She and TV icon Timothy got married in 1963, and have enjoyed thriving careers in the industry together.

After speaking to the actor about his upcoming appearances in Gentleman Jack, Alan stated: “I’ve got to ask, how’s Pru?”

“She’s alright, yes,” Timothy replied. “She has a bit of a serious memory problem, it’s meant we don’t have the same kind of conversations that we used to have, which is sad for us both.

“But she enjoys life, she gets about, we go to the theatre, we go to meet friends, and I’m very lucky, really. Very lucky.”

It came after Timothy reminisced about the couple’s first date earlier in the show.

“We met in, I think, 1951 or something like that,” he told Alan.

“We met in a terrible play called She Died Young, and there was an electrician strike which went on and on and on.

“And eventually the director came to us and said ‘I’m terribly sorry, we are unable to record’, ‘oh goodness’ we said.

“And we were left with an afternoon vacant. I said to Pru ‘what do you want to do’?

“She said ‘let’s go to the pictures’, and that was it.”

Close friend Alan recalled: “I think it was at your silver wedding, you said ‘we’re celebrating 25 years together, we’ve actually only been together for about seven of them because we’re acting in different places’.”

The couple look forward to celebrating 60 years of marriage next year.

Their love story captured the hearts of the nation when they documented life with her illness during 10 series of Great Canal Journeys recently.

Last month, Timothy described what he and Pru get up to these days.

“We talk and we read and listen to music, and go out occasionally to the theatre and opera,” he said. 

“We make sure she has lovely things to do. Pru enjoys life, which is wonderful.”

Speaking to Saga Magazine, he continued: “She lives in a nice house in south London, with a nice husband and a family she sees. We have a lovely garden she adores.

“I am fortunate that I don’t have to spend a lot of time cheering Pru up. She is the cheerful one. I am the grumpy one.”

Love Your Weekend with Alan Titchmarsh airs on Sundays at 10am on ITV.

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