Bobby Brazier’s grandmother Jackiey Budden tells HER aspect of the story
Onstage, it was all sequins and smiles as Bobby Brazier, the endearing star of final yr’s Strictly collection, twirled and quickstepped in entrance of his adoring followers for the present’s reside tour.
One fan, although, had extra motive to cheer than most: Bobby’s adoring grandmother, Jackiey Budden.
Front and centre at Newcastle’s Metro Arena earlier this yr, Jackiey was holding one thing treasured as she watched her proficient grandson carry out – an image of her late daughter, Bobby’s mom, actuality star Jade Goody.
‘I travelled to Newcastle so I could be as close as possible to him,’ Jackiey tells me on this emotional interview. ‘I took a picture of Jade with me so she could watch him too. It was important to me that she was there as well.
‘I was sat really near the front, around some big fans of Bobby’s. One of them received his consideration and he noticed me. He knew I used to be there and that’s all I wanted to know.’
Why, you may marvel, was it so vital to Jackiey that her grandson noticed her within the viewers?
Jackiey Budden was seen standing and waving as Bobby lifted the glitter ball on the evening with dance associate Dianne Buswell
Jackiey had not sees grandson Bobby Brazier carry out in strictly come dancing earlier than his Newcastle efficiency
Dianne Buswell and Bobby Brazier attend the photocall for the Strictly Come Dancing: The Live Tour 2024
The fact is, she says right this moment, that regardless of her love for her well-known grandson, she hasn’t seen him for over a yr, because of a household rift between her and the boys’ father, tv presenter Jeff Brazier.
So deeply has their relationship been broken that Jackiey was even pressured to purchase her personal ticket to see Bobby carry out in Newcastle.
It’s clear, although, that Jackiey would do something to be near Bobby. ‘At least he knew I had made the effort for him, and that I still love him despite whatever has gone on with his dad,’ she says emotionally.
Jackiey was later buoyed when she obtained a textual content message from Bobby. ‘He said he had seen I was there and hoped I had enjoyed the show. I very much did, he was great out there on the dancefloor, he was such an entertainer.
‘It’s the primary time I had heard something from him in months. It was beautiful, however I believe it will likely be some time earlier than I do once more.’
It’s all a great distance from the times when an adoring Bobby would go away a single yellow rose on his grandmother’s doorstep if he ever visited her Bermondsey house and she or he wasn’t there; the sweetest of calling playing cards to let her know that he had missed seeing her.
Today, nonetheless, her fallout with their father has successfully ended their intimacy of their relationship.
‘Bobby was on my hip from when he was tiny baby,’ Jackiey tells me. ‘Throughout his years as a young boy, and then as he grew up, he would come and visit all of the time.
‘What I would give for another yellow rose on my doorstep now. He is the kindest, loveliest boy. I miss him unimaginably.’
Bobby, 20, whose full identify is Bobbyjack, hasn’t visited Jackiey at her council flat for over a yr. Previously, Bobby had commonly popped over, and the pair would watch previous movies of Jade’s tv programmes for consolation.
‘If we were feeling sad one day, Freddy would go and do one of Jade’s train movies within the bed room and Bobby and I might sit and watch a few of her previous programmes in the lounge.
Jade Goody and son Bobby Jack Brazier in 2006
Jade Goody and her sons Bobby Jack (L) and Freddie arrive on the premiere of Garfield 2: A Tail Of Two Kitties, on the Vue Cinema West End on July 16, 2006
Jade Goody’s Mum Jackiey Budden with Jade’s kids Freddie and Bobby leaving the Royal Marsden Hospital in London
‘I have got all of the DVDs from that time, we would watch Jade’s Salon, a actuality present she did about opening a hairdressers.
‘We would just sit and talk about Jade while it was on. I think it helped us all,’ she says, wistfully.
So shut have been they that Jackiey would even take younger Bobby’s packed lunch to him when he started his first job as an workplace employee on the highest ground of London’s Shard constructing.
‘We did so much together,’ says Jackiey. ‘We used to walk around Borough Market at lunchtime when I met him from work, or we would go to Soho and just wander.
‘Bobby rang me just before Strictly and we had a short chat about how he was getting on. That was the last time we spoke. It breaks my heart.’
Those who know Jackiey say that the fallout between herself and Jeff has robbed her of her grandchildren – and the one hyperlink she has to her late daughter, who first turned well-known in 2002 after showing on Big Brother.
Shortly afterwards, Jade met former skilled soccer participant Jeff, now 46. Their relationship lasted barely two years, however produced their two sons: Bobby in 2003 and Freddy in 2004. Jackiey says she usually pitched in with childcare.
Jade sadly died in 2009 from cervical most cancers, aged simply 27. After her demise, a protecting Jeff sought to maintain his sons out of the limelight.
Jackiey says she and Jeff ‘rubbed along’ collectively on this time. But because the boys grew up, their relationship imploded.
Jackiey blames the autumn out on Jeff, and what she says are ‘differing values’.
Indeed, Jeff has beforehand spoken overtly about this, saying Jackiey spoiled his sons with ‘unsuitable’ purchases he needed to confiscate.
According to Jeff, Jackiey had purchased each boys, who have been then aged below 10, presents like cellphones with out consulting him first.
He stated: ‘She got them a phone each so she could have direct contact with them both and I don’t remember being asked if I minded… I understand she wants direct contact but they are just too young to be carrying these things around responsibly… I can’t fault Jackiey when she’s got the boys, I just wish we could work together a little better.’
Today, Jackiey says: ’The boys reside with Jeff, so Bobby looks like he has to do what Jeff desires. I get it.’
But what does she make of Jeff? ‘We don’t get on. We are very completely different, however I’ve been there for these boys since they have been born.’
Jackiey avoids being too rude about Jeff for worry of constructing relations even worse – however feelings rise, and she will be able to’t assist however describe him because the ‘c**k’ a number of instances throughout our interview.
Does she like him, I ask? ‘No, not at all, but he doesn’t like me both.’
One ought to level out right here, nonetheless, that it’s truthful to say Jackiey will not be a standard grandmother. A former drug addict, she has been open about her failings as a mom, elevating Jade on advantages in an usually chaotic and generally abusive one-parent family.
For all her flaws, although, one can’t assist however really feel sorry for Jackiey. Undoubtedly, she’s undoubtedly has misplaced extra from the feud than Jeff – not least the truth that it’s prevented her from cheering Bobby on throughout a few of the largest moments of his life.
Jackiey tells me she was saddened to study she wasn’t invited BBC’s Elstree studios to see Bobby carry out on the Strictly stage.
In distinction, Jeff and his spouse Kate would commonly be there to cheer him on.
It appeared Bobby’s allocation of viewers tickets went to Jeff and his spouse Kate (with whom he was lately reconciled after splitting final yr), in addition to Freddy, 19. Not as soon as all through the 12-week run of the BBC One programme was Jackiey given the chance to go.
Clearly, Jackiey is indignant about this – particularly as a result of she wasn’t within the viewers when Bobby carried out a tearjerking ‘couples’ alternative’ dance to Maxwell’s This Woman’s Work in reminiscence of his late mom.
Neither did she function within the pre-recorded clip earlier than the efficiency the place Bobby paid tribute to Jade.
Jeff, nonetheless, had a starring position.
Jackiey says she stays ‘sad’ to not have been included. ‘I thought that was wrong,’ she says adamantly.
Despite makes an attempt to make peace with Jeff, she didn’t get an invite to see Bobby compete within the Strictly closing, the place he finally misplaced to actress Ellie Leach.
Instead, she watched the ultimate at her house, a three-bedroom council flat in Bermondsey, South East London.
‘I was so proud,’ she admits. ‘Watching my Bobbyjack doing that was wonderful. I didn’t miss a minute. I simply should do not forget that, I received to see him try this and it was superb.’
But would she have favored to have been there? ‘Of course I would. But I wasn’t allowed,’ she says.
This wasn’t the primary time Jackiey has been excluded from Bobby’s fame. When he was up for the Rising Star award on the National Television Awards final September, she purchased her personal ticket to the occasion.
And after seeing Bobby carry out on the Strictly tour in Newcastle, as quickly as she received house to London, she determined she would journey once more – this time to Liverpool – to see him carry out as soon as extra.
‘I took Jade with me again, I just know what that would have meant to her.
‘Bobby is Jade, I looked at him out there, he has her features and in particular, her smile. Her amazing smile. I can’t let you know how completely satisfied it made me.’
So what for the way forward for the as soon as shut nan and grandson?
‘I would love more than anything to repair all of this. I really wish I could do it now.
‘I miss Bobby, and hope that maybe once he moves out of Jeff’s home and has his personal place he’ll really feel that he can see me once more and we will return to how we use to be.’
And Bobby will as soon as once more remind his nan that he loves her by leaving her a yellow rose.