Amanda Barrie has revealed she signed up for Celebrity Big Brother to stop herself 'thinking about death'.
The Coronation Street legend joked that going on the Channel 5 show at the age of 82 is 'occupational therapy' to keep her mind off dying.
The actress, who played Alma Sedgewick for 20 years in the ITV soap, playfully added that the hefty pay package would help cover her care home bills in the future.
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Keeping busy Amanda Barrie has revealed she signed up for Celebrity Big Brother to stop her 'thinking about death'
'I had no intention of doing it [Celebrity Big Brother], but then I thought it could pay for my care home. It would be nice to have that independence,' she told The Mirror.
She added jokingly: 'What keeps me working? I think it's occupational therapy to stop me thinking about death, really.'
Amanda said she feared she'd gone 'entirely mad' when she accepted the offer, but eventually reasoned that it would be 'foolish' to pass up the 'adventure'.
The Benidorm star added that when she left partner Hilary Bonner - her crime novelist wife of three years - to go into the Borehamwood mansion, she felt like she was preparing to go into a care home.
Honest: The Coronation Street legend joked that going on the Channel 5 show at the age of 82 is 'occupational therapy' to keep her mind off dying
'I did have this moment when my partner, Hilary, put me in the car with two suitcases where I thought, "Are you sure you're going to Big Brother or has she sent you packing to a care home now?" ' she said.
In her typically self-deprecating style, she added that being in Celebrity Big Brother would be 'good training' for when she enters a nursing home.
She also revealed that her quirky onscreen antics will be able to entertain her family and keep their mind off the tragedies they have endured recently.
At 82, Amanda is the oldest celebrity to enter the house so far this year. She cried on her entrance into the house: 'All I can say is that it's a bl***y miracle I got up those stairs.'
Icon: The actress, who played Alma Sedgewick (pictured left) for 20 years in the ITV soap, playfully added that the hefty pay package would help pay for her care home bills in the future
She is famed for her role in Coronation Street, exiting the show in 2001 after her character Alma Sedgewick died from cervical cancer.
The star, who first found fame in the likes of Carry On Cleo and was married to fellow thespian Robin Hunter from 1967 until his death in 2004, went on to marry again and tied the knot with crime writer Hilary in 2014.
Speaking in her VT, she addressed her decision to re-marry at 79 years of age and embrace her sexuality.
She said: 'I was married for about 14 years and then I got married again to a different sex when I was 79. It may sound a little too late, but it isn't too late girls. What I've discovered since coming out is that I don't feel like I'm telling a lie or covering up and that is the most amazing gift.'
Joking: The Benidorm star added that when she left partner Hilary Bonner (pictured) - her crime novelist wife of three years - to go into the Borehamwood mansion, she felt like she was preparing to go into a care home
Speaking of her decision to enter the Celebrity Big Brother house, she said: 'I thought if ever there is a time to do it, it's time.'
And not fazed by the prospect of a number of male housemates joining the women at a later date, Amanda has said ahead of her appearance: Oh darling, we’ll just welcome the boys. I think anybody that goes in there, anything in there will cause a ruckus.'
And she has already made quite the impression inside the house, winning immunity alongside Ex On The Beach star Jess Impiazzi.
The pair scored points as they clubbed together to fix a damaged circuit board in the series' first challenge of the year.
Candid: She added jokingly: 'What keeps me working? I think it's occupational therapy to stop me thinking about death, really' (pictured in the 1960s)