Scarlett Lee fears for her life in £7m X Factor house after horrific caravan fire where she thought her brother was 'dying from a seizure'

In an exclusive interview, she told me that the blaze that hit her home has left her fearing the same could happen to the £7million pad she shares with her fellow contestants.

She said: “I couldn’t sleep properly. My boyfriend had to be on the floor while I slept on the sofa and my dad would sleep in the armchair to watch me.

“I became very paranoid thinking there was going to be a fire, so I needed to sleep by the door.”

Scarlett recalled in horrifying detail the moment she saw the family’s mobile home near Epsom, Surrey, ablaze at the start of last week – and thought her brother was dying.

She said: “I looked and my brother was on the floor. He was shaking, foaming from the mouth. I was thinking, ‘has he just had a seizure, a heart attack?’”

Scarlett was also injured when an ember flew into her face – but she only cared about her brother.

She said: “I dropped to my knees and my mum was like: ‘Oh my God, your eye’ and I was like, ‘Mum, I don’t know if my brother’s dead or alive, I can’t worry about my eye’. I was screaming and ripping my hair out.”

Two of her brothers were treated for smoke inhalation and received burns on their arms, while her sister-in-law suffered burns to her back.

Scarlett spent five hours receiving treatment in hospital on Wednesday and will continue treatment for her eye for another fortnight at least.

She said: “I couldn’t open my eye. Any sort of light, like just turning on your phone, would add pain. The doctors told me I could have lost my eyesight for good. I’m very lucky.”

Scarlett says she and her family, who are now staying at her home, were left “traumatised” by the fire and suffer distressing flashbacks.

She said: “Every time they go to sleep they dream of it. They’re not close to getting a new home – their mental health is the biggest priority at the moment.

“People have been turning up with bags of clothes old and new. Family, friends and the public have given money, cards and gift vouchers for Christmas for the kids. There’s a lot of people that have helped. You never forget them when you’re down.”

Also lending support is her mentor Simon Cowell, who saved the family’s Christmas by delivering toys alongside the Harrods gift baskets Scarlett shared on Instagram this week.

She said: “I'm not one for a sob story but my family just had their home cleared because it was all ashes, so it was quite a hard day, and a white van turned up with loads of gifts for the children, colouring books and Nerf guns for my nephew.

“Simon has been my rock and he’s helped my family so much in ways I’d never be able to thank him for.”

I think you could easily repay him if you won X Factor, Scarlett.


Emma cuffed to bits

EMMA Thompson is led away in handcuffs by a cop just a day after receiving her damehood at Buckingham Palace.

The Oscar winner asked Prince William for a kiss during the ceremony. But she wasn’t arrested for making the cheeky request.

After her big day, Emma went back to playing rebel MP Vivienne Rook in the upcoming BBC drama Years & Years – and here she is pictured on set.

But given Dame Emma turned up to the palace in white trainers, I think she should have been lifted by the fashion police.

Sir David joins TV Goliath

ALL eyes were supposed to be on this Sunday’s launch of Sir David Attenborough’s landmark BBC1 nature show called Dynasties.

But Netflix has now stolen some of its thunder by announcing its own epic natural history series to be presented by none other than, er, Sir David.

Our Planet is an eight-part series, compared with the five episodes of the Beeb offering about endangered species.

A TV insider said: “This is more than a little embarrassing because Sir David is very much seen as being part of the BBC family.

“This isn’t the first time he’s made shows for other channels, but Netflix is now a big rival to the Beeb.”

Our Planet, which starts next April, took four years to create and involved travel to 50 countries.

As a huge fan of Sir David, I say the BBC’s loss is the viewers’ gain.


AXED stars of The Apprentice are lucky if they go on to Celebrity Big Brother. But deluded Kurran Pooni has high hopes of being “the best actor ever”. He said: “I’d like to do something like a Bond villain.”

Bears give Fortitude the shivers

FILMING in public often attracts some unwanted attention from onlookers.

But the creators of drama Fortitude used armed guards to deter their nosey bystanders – polar bears.

The latest series of the Sky Atlantic thriller, which returns next month, was finally allowed to film in the Arctic Circle, after the first two were shot in Iceland.

And star Richard Dormer felt the health benefits of shooting in freezing temperatures. He said: “It was –45C in the opening scene and then the wind chill when I was on the snow mobile… I couldn’t feel my face.

“If you wanted to light a cigarette, your hand would be sore after about 20 seconds.”

It’s one way to make you give up.

Must watch

WHAT? Alone At Home, 8pm, Channel 4.

WHY? A new series shows what can happen when kids are left alone at home for four days. Two sisters aged 16 and 13 are filmed by 27 cameras as they scrap and squabble.

Goodbye from Kevin O'Sullivan

JEREMY Vine might be settled into his Channel 5 show but one colleague is still pining for the old host.

TV reviewer Kevin O’Sullivan is bowing out to focus on the talkRADIO show he co-hosts with Matthew Wright.

Kevin said: “I’ve had the most amazing time working with Channel 5 and 12 years is a long time in anyone’s book.

“But since Matthew left The Wright Stuff in June, I’ve missed our knockabout on-screen relationship. It feels like the right time to say goodbye.”


Over in Coronation Street, Nick juggles the demands of three women, while Steve is on the verge of winning round Tracy.

Elsewhere, Tim makes a point of telling Sally just how much he loves her during a prison visit and Gina realises that he has worked out her feelings for him.

Meanwhile in EastEnders, Bev tries to show Hayley how to be a caring mother and claims this will be a good chance for them to bond and fix the past.

Ray panics when he realises Mel knew he was lying about the money – and tries to cover his tracks.

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