Entertainment & Arts

Sir Tom Jones mourns wife as he takes stage at book festival

Linda and Tom Jones Image copyright PA
Image caption The couple got married when they were 16

Sir Tom Jones has told an audience that his wife, who died in April, was the "most important thing" in his life, at the Hay Festival in Wales.

He said of his late wife Linda: "I realised that she's always been very important to me, throughout my life.

"But I now I realise she might have been the most important thing in my life - and she still is."

A tearful Sir Tom was at the book festival to discuss his autobiography, Over the Top and Back.

The book covers his life and his career, which spans 50 years. Lady Linda died of cancer in April. The couple were married for 59 years.

'Strong marriage'

The star told GQ editor Dylan Jones, who interviewed him on stage at the festival, that he never considered leaving his childhood sweetheart.

"No. Never. Never crossed my mind - it didn't cross her mind. It was solid. We had a solid marriage that nothing could shake and we both felt that.

"I felt very lucky to have fallen in love at an early age. We were teenagers, we fell in love, not just in lust.

"A lot of teenagers fall in lust and then it doesn't last. But we knew this thing was forever, for as long as we would be alive. That's how strong the marriage was."

Sir Tom is due to kick off his UK tour with a performance at Hampton Court Palace on 8 June.

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