Charlotte Church says childhood 'kidnap plots' contributed to family rift

Singer Charlotte Church takes part in a discussion on phone hacking before today's session of the Conservative Party conference at International Convention Centre in Birmingham.   (Photo by David Jones/PA Images via Getty Images)
Singer Charlotte Church takes part in a discussion on phone hacking at the Conservative Party conference. (David Jones/PA Images via Getty Images)

Charlotte Church, 33, has opened up on the "intense situation" she and her family found themselves in when she rose to fame as a child, revealing she was the target of kidnap plots that contributed to their stress.

The singer became a child star aged 11 after singing on This Morning back in 1997 and Church returned to the programme on Tuesday to talk about her new documentary which looks at her difficult relationship with her family after growing up in the spotlight.

Addressing the problems that arose at the peak of her fame, Church shared: “I don’t think anything went wrong, it was like a pressure cooker. It was an intense situation.

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"You’ve got the stuff going on with the press… on another level mum and dad were dealing with the security level we had going on, there were a couple of kidnap plots when I was a kid… we were living in each other’s pockets.”

Charlotte Church appeared alongside her mum Maria on This Morning. (ITV)
Charlotte Church appeared alongside her mum Maria on This Morning. (ITV)

Church's mother Maria and stepdad James will appear in the Channel 4 documentary, Charlotte Church: My Family and Me as the trio set off to a remote lodge in an attempt to resolve their differences.

Maria appeared alongside Church on This Morning, where she detailed how she suffered a nervous breakdown once Church left home aged 16.

She shared: “When Charlotte left home, it was very, very brutal and very sudden. She broke my heart, I ended up having a nervous breakdown.

Child soprano Charlotte Church (L) with her mother, Maria, outside the High Court in London, where the 14 year old and her former manager Jonathan Shalit have settled their multi-million pound dispute ending the bitter courtroom battle which began 21/11/00.   * After a morning of legal wrangling between the parties, Charlotte, returned to the court to throw her arms around her barrister, Mr Richard Englehart QC, and kiss him in gratitude. 03/01/01: Charlotte opening the Harrods January Sale, in London's Knightsbridge.
Charlotte Church aged 14 with her mother, Maria, outside the High Court in London.

"I’ve just started back [in therapy] again now. It’s going really well, it’s early days but at least I’m trying to do something about it now because I’ve always suffered from mental health issues. Mine are quite complex because it’s a mixture of everything - a bag of worms. We’re getting there.”

Church also explained her motivations behind doing the documentary, stating that she wanted to "set the record straight". It comes as her stepfather James is currently battling a rare terminal illness.

The mother-of-two told Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield: “I think for me it was a chance for my mum and dad, who have had a really rough ride in the press for so long, to sort of set the record straight and show who they are but also, as we explore in the programme, my dad has a terminal illness and what he wanted to put across was that there is life after a terminal illness.”