Les Battersby, portrayed by Bruce Jones, became a household name in Britain. He is known for the chaos he and his on-screen family stirred on the cobbled streets of Coronation Street. But behind the scenes, Bruce’s life took unexpected turns, leading him from homelessness and alcoholism to a surprising Hollywood comeback.
Les Battersby’s on-screen journey captured the hearts of viewers since 1997 when he, alongside his on-screen wife Janice and their blended family, burst onto the soap scene. However, Bruce Jones, the man behind the character, faced his own real-life struggles that would shape his future.
Bruce’s Grim Discovery Led To Problems
Bruce’s troubles began long before his Corrie days. In 1977, he found himself entangled in the Yorkshire Ripper murders, leading to a police investigation that shattered his marriage. The trauma of discovering a victim’s body haunted him, impacted his mental health and contributed to the breakdown of his first marriage. His life took another hit in 2007 when he was suspended from the soap for revealing future storylines during an alcohol-fueled encounter with an undercover journalist.
Bruce went on to face financial struggles, leading to the loss of his Cheshire house and living alone in a North Wales caravan.
But the clouds began to part when Bruce stepped into the limelight once more. Bruce Jones tried his hand at stand-up comedy in Benidorm and reality TV appearances, including Celebrity Wife Swap. After that, Bruce’s journey took a turn in 2009 with BBC One’s Famous, Rich and Homeless. This experience foreshadowed his future struggles, hinting at the tough times ahead.
Financial Troubles And Addiction Take Their Toll
Bruce Jones’ financial woes came to light when it was revealed he had spent his £1,000,000 fortune and had been living in a caravan. His battles with alcoholism and debt took centre stage in Channel 5’s Celebs on Benefits: Fame to Claim.
Through it all, a silver lining emerged in the form of friendship. Co-star Vicky Entwistle, who played Janice, stood by Bruce during his darkest moments, offering support that proved instrumental in his journey to recovery. Bruce told the Mirror, “There were times I didn’t want to be in the dressing room, I just wanted to go home. I was suffering depression but didn’t realise I was ill. It’s a terrible disease. You don’t know you’ve got it, but it’s got you. Basically, I was schizophrenic. My only defence was that I was an actor. I lost my first marriage, my children. I lost everything because of that. It actually destroyed me.”
Fast forward to today, and Bruce Jones has found a Hollywood redemption. Landing a role in the upcoming espionage thriller Cold Sun alongside Tara Reid.