Heather Small has revealed that she struggled with anxiety during lockdown.

The M People frontwoman, 56, experienced ‘dark rain clouds’ as she worried about her sister Cheryl’s bipolar disorder while holed up at home amid the pandemic.

The much-loved soul singer has also detailed how mental illness affects the whole family.

Lifting the lid on her rather difficult lockdown experience, Heather told Mail Online : “In lockdown, we're taken out of our usual patterns of behaviour and daily patterns and that can impact on your mental health.

“The last few days I feel like I've been followed by a dark rain cloud. It's definitely not being able to be out there doing what I love.”

Heather Small has revealed that she struggled with anxiety during lockdown
Heather Small has revealed that she struggled with anxiety during lockdown

Heather went on to reveal the pandemic affected her mental health in more ways than one as her music career also took a hit due to the cancellation of live events across the UK.

She said that performing and making music was about much more than making money for her, and that it was "intrinsic" with her mental health and wellbeing.

During the candid interview, Heather also opened up about her younger sister Cheryl’s bipolar disorder.

Heather also opened up about her younger sister Cheryl’s bipolar disorder
Heather also opened up about her younger sister Cheryl’s bipolar disorder

“My sister is bipolar. She's one of the greatest loves of my life. She's a gift,” the singer gushed.

Heather went on to reveal that mental illness affects the whole family when one member of the clan is diagnosed with any kind of disorder.

Heather said mental illness affects the whole family when one member of the clan is diagnosed with any kind of disorder
Heather said mental illness affects the whole family when one member of the clan is diagnosed with any kind of disorder

“As a family and with some professional help it's something that we manage,” she explained.

Despite experiencing some low moments over the past number of months, Heather managed to get through lockdown with the help of her beloved family and friends.

If you're struggling and need to talk, the Samaritans operate a free helpline open 24/7 on 116 123. Alternatively, you can email [email protected] or visit their site to find your local branch