'It doesn’t feel like he’s gone’: S Club reveal nervous calls they made to Paul Cattermole hours before his death

26 July 2023, 01:18 | Updated: 26 July 2023, 01:21

The group opened up about when they heard the news of co-star Paul's death.
The group opened up about when they heard the news of co-star Paul's death. Picture: Alamy

By Jenny Medlicott

The pop group opened up about the day they found out co-star Paul Cattermole died, as they revealed the panic that ensued when he stopped replying to messages.

The group of six revealed the events of the day Paul Cattermole died in an emotional first interview since his death.

Paul was found dead at his home in Dorset in April, aged 46.

The police said in May that the coroner had ruled that Mr Cattermole died of natural causes, meaning there would be no inquest into his death.

Speaking in their first interview together since his death, the group said they first found out about the news in a late night call from their management.

Jo O’Meara, 44, said she and co-star Jon Lee, 41, were the first two to hear the news at around 9:30pm on the Thursday night.

“I think I just went completely silent at first. It was awful,” she told The Sun in their first interview since his death.

While Jon said: “It was like someone had punched me in the stomach.” Other members of the group went on to reveal the feeling of disbelief the news left them with.

Tina Barrett, 46, said she was watching TV at home with her son at the time when the news arrived. Propelled into disbelief, Tina told the outlet how she was convinced the news was a mistake.

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Paul was due to join his co-stars on the reunion tour.
Paul was due to join his co-stars on the reunion tour. Picture: Getty

It came just weeks after the group had agreed to join together for a reunion tour later in the year.

Speaking during the interview, the group revealed the panic that ensued after Paul stopped replying to messages from management and the rest of the group, as their concerns began to grow.

Jon said: “We’d done a Zoom call with him, all of us, on the Monday. Then our management had messaged him a few times and it hadn’t shown that it’d been read on WhatsApp.

“So it was like, ‘Is he all right?’ But then it was like, ‘Yeah it’s Paul. You know, sometimes he doesn’t answer his phone’.

“Then the next day I phoned him and messaged him.

“Everyone was trying to get hold of him . . . and no one could.”

The group announced plans for a reunion tour earlier this year.
The group announced plans for a reunion tour earlier this year. Picture: Alamy

But despite the heartbreak of their loss, the group said the tragedy has brought them even closer together and made them committed to making the reunion special to honour his memory.

They also expressed their gratefulness about having one final chance to reunite with Paul before his death, as the group hadn’t been together for eight years before the reunion was agreed upon.

Rachel Stevens, 45, said: “To have that time together was really special. We all reconnected again as who we are now. Paul felt part of it. We all felt part of it.”

“His presence is so strong. It doesn’t feel like he’s gone. It feels like he’s still here. We miss him dearly, though,” Bradley Macintosh, 41, said.

While the group remain determined to carry on in Paul’s honour, Hannah Spearitt, 42, pulled out after the news of his death.

Hannah and Paul dated between 2001 and 2006 and briefly again in 2015.

The group revealed that Paul’s family gave them their blessing to go ahead with the tour, which is scheduled to start in Manchester on October 12.

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