Emilia Clarke tells of 'terrifying' brain haemorrhage ordeal as Game of Thrones star receives MBE

 (PA Wire)
(PA Wire)

Actress Emilia Clarke has spoken of her “terrifying” ordeal after she almost died from a brain haemorrhage.

The Game Of Thrones star joined Wetherspoons founder Sir Tim Martin and former chancellor Sir Sajid Javid as they collected their honours from the Prince of Wales at Windsor Castle on Wednesday.

Clarke was made an MBE alongside her mother Jenny as co-founders of SameYou, a brain injury recovery charity they established after the actress survived two brain haemorrhages.

The charity focuses on the rehabilitation of patients after they leave hospital.

Clarke had her first brain haemorrhage in 2011, a month after she had finished filming the first season of Game Of Thrones.

She said the hardest part of her illness was coming home and realising she was on her own.

“You spend a month in hospital, every day they tell you you’re going to die,” she said.

“And then you go home, and you have to live with that.

“I found that incredibly difficult, and my family found it incredibly difficult.

“You are so taken care of, and so supported, and then you are let out into the world.

“And it seems terrifying, and you feel like you are ill-equipped to be a normal person again because you have just been told that you are going to die every three seconds.

Emilia Clarke and Jennifer Clarke receiving their honours from the Prince of Wales (Yui Mok/PA Wire)
Emilia Clarke and Jennifer Clarke receiving their honours from the Prince of Wales (Yui Mok/PA Wire)

“That was the hardest adjustment, and then I did a film set and I said: ‘Oh, this is mental anyway’, so…”

Clarke said William made her and her mother feel “so comfortable” while he presented them with their honours.

“I think I underestimated the magical nature of being here and the ceremony of the whole thing,” she said.

“His Royal Highness William was just delightful and made us feel so comfortable.”

Her mother said that William was “very well briefed” about their charity and why they were there.

Clarke joked that she thought her mother was going to ask the prince to be on the board of trustees.

“I thought she was going to ask him to be on the board of trustees, but she didn’t,” she said.

Her mother added: “I nearly did.”

The actress said that running a charity “is one of the hardest things I’ve had to do”.

“There are times when it feels like an uphill struggle that you don’t think you’re going to reach the top of at any point,” she said.

“There are lots of dark moments like that when you run a charity, and I speak for most people who run a charity who feel the same way.

“So to get something like this… it gives you such a boost of energy and momentum.”

Asked about her next project, Clarke said that she had a few new productions in the pipeline, including An Ideal Wife, a film about Oscar Wilde’s spouse, Constance Lloyd.

“That’s now happening next year,” she said.

“I am playing Oscar Wilde’s wife.”

She added: “There’s a huge amount that we don’t know about her.”

Other people recognised at the investiture ceremony included Labour MP Dame Siobhain McDonagh, for political and public service; director Betsy Gregory, who was made an OBE for services to dance; and Lydia Otter, who becomes an MBE for services to people with autism and their families in Oxfordshire.