Larry Lamb: 'I ran away from my daughter'

Sunday, June 20 2010, 14:12 BST
Larry Lamb
Larry Lamb has revealed that he walked out on his baby daughter because he was not ready for the responsibility of being a parent.

The 60-year-old actor admitted that he was afraid of repeating his own father's mistakes, adding that it was a "huge regret" of his to never have been in contact with her.

Speaking to the News of the World, he recalled: "At 21, I became a father for the first time to a little girl. I'm ashamed to say my response was to run away, get out of the country, get as far away from my parents and being a parent myself, as possible.

"I supported my daughter financially, but I didn't have any contact with her. And 40 years on, it's a huge regret. I was a kid. I had no sense of responsibility; I had no sense of who I was. I didn't know what I wanted, I just knew what I didn't want.

"I wasn't in any sense ready or prepared to be, a father. I think I was terrified of repeating what my own parents had done. I'm not proud of it, but I just ran away.

Lamb, best known for playing Archie Mitchell in EastEnders, continued: "I wasn't born a good father. I wouldn't have been a good father at all if it wasn't for George's mum Linda and George himself.

"My own childhood wasn't great. I was dominated and bullied by my father Ronald and every day, from the earliest time I can remember, I watched my parents rip each other apart. I had a younger brother and my job was always to try to stop my mum Jessie and my dad fighting.

"There was no real violence, just a lot of psychological bullying, screaming, rowing, and my dad was always at the centre of it all. In fact, Archie was based on my dad, who was deeply screwed up."

> Larry Lamb: 'My dad was like Archie'
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