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BBC The Weakest Link: Rita Simons’ life away from EastEnders of a very famous uncle, estranged from her husband who left her ‘broken’ and her health

Any EastEnders fan will know the name Rita Simons.

Rita, 44, is perhaps best known for playing Roxy Mitchell on the BBC 2007 soap opera before being killed off in 2017.

Given the popularity of EastEnders, Rita has built up a devoted fan base who enjoy keeping up to date with the details of her behind-the-scenes life.

READ MORE:Jason Manford’s far-from-comedy home life with 6 kids and how he lost an impressive 3 stone

Ronnie and Roxy Mitchell were played by Samantha Womack and Rita Simons in EastEnders

On the sweet side, Rita married hairstylist Theo Silverston in August 2004. The couple share twin daughters, but they separated in 2018.

The star said she was “properly broken” following her estranged husband’s divorce.

“My mind has gone to some big dark places,” she told the Mirror.

Reflecting on a year in lockdown earlier this year, she added: “So so. I really came out the other side.

“I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. I was working non-stop and I was fine, but I was desperately unhappy – no one would have known.

“I had so many things to do at home, I was driving myself crazy working to try to forget everything else

“I was physically ill every two weeks and lost a lot of weight.”

Lord Sugar tweeted the Graham Norton Show to secure an appearance
Lord Sugar is Rita’s uncle by marriage

A surprising fact about Rita’s family life is that she is related to one of the biggest names in business and television – Lord Alan Sugar.

The couple are not directly blood related, but Lord Alan is married to Rita’s aunt, Ann Simons.

The relationship between the two TV stars was revealed by Hello magazine in 2018 when the star joined i am a celebrity .

The former soap opera star, 40, has previously opened up about his relationship with the outspoken businessman in the Mirror , confirming that he is her uncle and describing how “much nicer in real life” he is.

Rita said, “He always talks straight, but he’s a lot nicer.”

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Another aspect of Rita’s life that she’s been incredibly candid about is her health.

Rita has revealed in the past that she suffers from OCD, ADHD, anxiety and insomnia which often makes it difficult to sleep at night.

Speaking to the Daily Star, she said: “I suffer from a million ‘isms’ including ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder).

“I also have really bad insomnia. The worst is when I can’t sleep at all and I’m up all night.”

The star added: “Some nights I lie awake staring at the wall. I don’t even watch TV or listen to music.

” It’s horrible. It’s like torture. Sometimes I feel like I don’t sleep for days. It’s horrible.”

Rita Simons will appear on The Weakest Link at 6.10pm on BBC One today (Saturday 22 January)

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