Shirley Ballas has made a heartbreaking post to mark 17 years passing since her brother took his own life.

The Strictly Come Dancing head judge, 60, took to her Instagram account on Saturday to share a string of pictures of her late brother David.

These included snaps of David with Shirley's niece, his daughter Mary, and her son Mark.

She captioned the post: "It's hard to imagine that 17 years ago today my wonderful brother David took his own life.

"There is not a day goes by that you are not in my thoughts.

Shirley Ballas has made a heartbreaking post to mark 17 years passing since her brother took his own life
Shirley Ballas' brother David

"With tears flowing I'm remembering how much I miss you and your cuddles, how strict you were with me so I would be safe and how you made me laugh.

"We will be reunited one day in a place so beautiful. Until then I'm carrying you very close in my heart in all I do.

"We were tremendously close in so many ways and the pain will never go away, today and everyday my heart goes out to my mother Audrey so difficult to have lost your only son, to my beautiful niece Mary and my son Mark and to all who loved you I only wish you had known how much you where loved and what an impact you made in so many peoples lives.

David and his daughter Mary

"I have shared this today not only to remember my Dear Brother but because suicide and depression are tough subjects to talk about.

"If someone you love is hurting, needing company or just a shoulder to cry on, let them know you are there and most importantly let them know you love them.

"If it's YOU feeling this way it's nothing to be ashamed of reach out connect with family and friends or ask for help.

"I'm sending healing energy to all who have lost loved ones and to any one who is suffering in silence.

Shirley said she would be listening to his favourite songs today

"RIP David."

Shirley added that she would be listening to his favourite songs today.

She finished the post with the hashtags #brother #son #dad #uncle #suicideprevention #suicide #neverforgotten #beaware #kindness #RIP.

*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