Melanie Blatt gets emotional in a candid chat with her mum on this week’s Celebrity Race Across the World.
Singer and former All Saints member Melanie Blatt gets teary when discussing a difficult childhood experience with mother Helene in Wednesday’s episode of the BBC One show.
As Mel and Helene race alongside their fellow celebrities towards the third checkpoint in the picturesque Zermatt, Switzerland, the mother-daughter duo take a break to soak in the sights of Nice and visit castle hill to witness the midday cannon.
It’s during this visit that they share a poignant moment, reflecting on a serious medical operation Mel had undergone as a child after being diagnosed with scoliosis.
Recalling the discovery of her condition, Mel says: “They discovered I had scoliosis a few months into starting stage school, because I was doing ballet there and my ballet teacher was like, ‘Stand up straight!’ and I was like, ‘I am!'”
Helene adds a heartbreaking layer to the story, revealing: “She had a really badly twisted spine and the hospital informed us that if we didn’t put her in a brace, she would probably be paralysed by the age of 21.
“So, we left England, sold everything and went to France for her operation.”
As she describes the challenging decision she had to make, Helene can’t hold back tears, saying, “I spoke to a doctor who was pioneering a new operation, and if we were willing to sign a discharge form [for Mel to have the operation], which was a 50/50 chance of being paralysed… So we [decided to] sign the form.”
Mel, clearly shocked by the revelation, responds:”I didn’t know all of that. It feels like talking about a different person almost. My mind is blown right now.”
She goes on to express her deep gratitude, saying, “You just do what you have to do for your kids. I get it. You’re a great mum… If I hadn’t had that operation, I would not have had the life that I have. You know, 21 is just before All Saints became successful.”
Celebrity Race Across The World continues on Wednesday night at 9PM on BBC One and iPlayer.
Alongside Mel and mum Helene, those taking part are presenter Alex Beresford and his dad, Noel, McFly drummer Harry Judd and his mum Emma, and racing driver Billy Monger and his sister.