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Sophia Myles: Do not treat lockdown as a holiday

The actress’s father, a vicar aged 76, died earlier this month after being treated for coronavirus.

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Sophia Myles lost her father to coronavirus (Rebecca Naden/PA)

Sophia Myles lost her father to coronavirus (Rebecca Naden/PA)

Sophia Myles lost her father to coronavirus (Rebecca Naden/PA)

Sophia Myles has urged people to take coronavirus seriously and not treat lockdown “as a holiday” following the death of her “selfless” father.

Peter Myles, a vicar, died earlier this month at the age of 76, with the Underworld star saying “it was the coronavirus that finally took him”.

Myles, 40, told Good Morning Britain that her father “was a very loving soul” who “adored caring for people”.

The Doctor Who and Moonlight actress said she was “one of the lucky ones” as she was allowed to see her father for five minutes the day before he died.

“Under strict medical supervision and clinical advice I was allowed into his ward, wearing a visor and full protective uniform,” she said.

“But I was only given five minutes to be in the room with him and had to stand at a two metre distance initially.

“They did allow me one moment to go in and hold his hand. I was wearing protective gloves, so it was so hard.

“You can’t have that flesh-to-flesh moment…  to kiss your loved one’s brow and hold their hand and it was very obvious that his breathing was starting to slow down massively.

“And this is the horrible thing about this virus… People are just dying because ultimately they are not able to breathe. It’s such an unnatural death.”

Myles said she was “outraged” to hear that some people were treating lockdown like a holiday.

The actress said: “A friend of mine lives in Southwold on the coast and she told me that campervans were arriving and people were not taking it seriously and thinking ‘Oh, I can just have a holiday because my kids aren’t at school.'”

And she told the ITV show: “It’s out of control. Everyone has to not just think of themselves but … everyone that they meet in the street.

“If you see an elderly person, don’t just go two metres away from them, cross over, walk on the other side of the street and listen to the medical advice.

“Listen to the Government advice. We have to take this seriously.”

Asked whether it felt, in her experience, that the medical staff had the protective equipment they need, she said: “No… I had to wait for about half an hour while they tried to find the correct uniform for me because they are so sparse.

“There was just this eerie silence in the ward. The nurses were incredibly quiet. It just felt so frightening and you could tell that everyone was on edge.”

She said of her father’s funeral: “I think we get about 5 or 10 minutes and that close friends and relatives are the only people that can go. It’s bad.”

PA