Coping with wife's death the hardest thing I've ever done - Tom Jones
A tearful Sir Tom Jones has spoken of the loss of his wife, during an emotional return to stage.
The Welsh singer said Lady Melinda Rose Woodward, to whom he was married for 59 years, was "the most important thing" in his life, during a talk at the Hay Festival.
Despite the famed womanising of his showbiz career, Sir Tom said he now realised more than ever "how important she was" to him.
Lady Linda, as she became known, died suddenly of cancer in April.
According to The Daily Telegraph, Sir Tom said coming to terms with her death was "the hardest thing" he had ever done.
"She had always been very important to me, always," he said during an interview at the literary event.
"Now I realise that she might have been the most important thing in my life. I realise even more now, how important she was to me."
The former judge on The Voice became overcome with emotion as he insisted that he never considered leaving his childhood sweetheart.
He said: "No. Never. Never crossed my mind - it didn't cross her mind. It was solid. We had a solid marriage that nothing could shake and we both felt that.
"I felt very lucky to have fallen in love at an early age. We were teenagers, we fell in love, not just in lust.
"A lot of teenagers fall in lust and then it doesn't last. But we knew this thing was forever, for as long as we would be alive. That's how strong the marriage was."