Britain’s Got Talent’s Lifford Shillingford opens up about battle with depression

Britain’s Got Talent golden buzzer act Lifford Shillingford has spoken candidly about his battle with depression.


This month, we met 42-year-old singer Lifford Shillingford from South London.

He revealed he had previously enjoyed brief success in the early 00s, appearing on the Artful Dodger’s hit Please Don’t Turn Me On.

Lifford sang ‘A Change Is Gonna Come’ by Sam Cooke and his performance saw Alesha Dixon hitting the golden buzzer.

He reacted: “Thank you so much, thank you so much.”

Alesha explained her decision: “It felt right. I feel like it takes courage and bravery when you’ve been in the industry and it knocks you down and you came back.

“For you to be on that stage just singing raw, heart and soul, you deserve this moment.”


In the episode, Lifford had opened up about battling anxiety and depression.

“I’ve been suffering from depression since I was a child,” he said. “It’s something I’ve finally learned to deal with over the past few years.

“Depression has taken me to some dark places, questioning my self-worth and existence, but it has also helped to make me ­stronger.”

Following the show, Lifford told The Sun newspaper: “Thankfully, I’m now out of that period.

“I hope my story can inspire ­anyone who has experienced depression and ­anxiety to show you can get through it.”

With Alesha’s golden buzzer, Lifford goes straight through to the live semi-finals later in the year.

At the end of the series, just one act will walk away with £250,000 and a spot on the Royal Variety Performance.


Britain’s Got Talent airs live all this week at 7:30PM on ITV.

If you ever need help, Samaritans offer confidential advice and support, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week over the phone on 116 123 or online