Tom Jones contracted tuberculosis in his teens.
Welsh singer Tom Jones has opened up about his ordeal with tuberculosis that forced him to spend two years living in isolation.
Jones, 80, contracted the infectious disease, which generally affects the lungs, in his early teens. However, the UK’s current lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic has brought back some painful memories for the Welsh star.
“I was isolated for two years. In the house, I couldn’t go out,” he told the BBC. “For the first year, I couldn’t get out of bed. The toilet was in the garden!
“We had this three-storey house, I was on the middle floor in the back room, ’cause that’s was where I could be isolated.”
Jones, who is a coach on The Voice UK, was speaking as part of BBC Radio’s series of programmes celebrating his 80th birthday on Sunday (UK time).
He expressed concern about the mental impact the Covid-19 crisis could have on the younger generation.
“You know, with this lockdown now, I’m thinking, ‘My God, how are those kids coping?’ Because I remember, it taught me to not take health for granted,” he told the BBC.
“As a child I couldn’t go out to play in the street with other children.
“It was a similar situation like what the kids are going through now. So I sympathise with young people that can’t go and play. It’s a big thing, especially when you’re learning about life.”