Waterloo Road star Richard Mylan has revealed his secret 20-year battle with a heroin addiction.
The 48-year-old actor, who played deputy headteacher Simon Lowsley in the BBC series, has opened up about his secret battle in order to help reduce the stigma around heroin abuse.
While previously he had kept his addiction a secret, admitting that he used to be a ‘functioning professional addict’, the star has now insisted that he doesn’t ‘care about that any more’.
The father of two said he suffered from ‘crippling anxiety’, and began taking illegal drugs at the start of his acting career, during his time in theatre in the West End.
‘It was one of the biggest mistakes I ever made,’ he recalled, speaking to BBC Wales.
Richard, who also starred in The Bill and BBC Three series Grownups, revealed he battled a ‘cycle of abuse’ and was led to his ‘absolute lowest’ when spiralling between using drugs and trying to get clean.
‘There are so many people out there who would never ever come forward because the stigma is so great’
Waterloo Road star Richard Mylan hopes speaking about his 20-year battle with heroin can help end the shame around drug addictionhttps://t.co/S5gIyZXaWK pic.twitter.com/5RIZ0LAUkN
‘My personal relationships suffered, my work relationships suffered and it robbed me of my inner ambition,’ he said, adding that the ‘chaos’ robbed ‘chunks of [his] life away’.
Richard tackled his addiction ten years ago with the ‘unconditional support’ of his wife Tammie.
He now wants to challenge the stigma around drug abuse and help recovering addicts, as he is working with south Wales-based charity Adferiad.
While it is unclear whether Richard will be joining the new Waterloo Road cast, Coronation Street stars Rachel Leskovac, Ryan Clayton and Kym Marsh all set to join the show.
Further casting includes Jo Coffey (EastEnders) joining the school as a PA, Vincent Jerome (Sins of Solitude) playing Lindon King, joint Deputy Head with James Baxter (Alma’s Not Normal) cast as Joe Casey – also Deputy Head.
Adam Thomas, Angela Griffin and Katie Griffiths are three former Waterloo Road cast members back to reprise their roles as Donte, Kim Campbell and Chlo.
Worried about drugs?
Frank offers confidential advice about drugs and addiction (email [email protected], message 82111 or call 0300 123 6600) or the NHS has information about getting help.
Adfam has local groups for families affected by drugs and alcohol and DrugFam offers phone and email support to people affected by other people’s drug or alcohol misuse.
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