Former New Order and Joy Division bassist Peter Hook says he endured years of physical abuse at the hands of his ex wife Caroline Aherne.
Award-winning actor and comedian Aherne died from cancer in July and Hook says he “couldn’t in all good conscience” join in the tributes following her death.
Aherne was the brains behind hit TV comedies The Mrs Merton Show and The Royle Family and she married Hook in Las Vegas in 1994. They split three years later.
Hook’s comments appear in his new autobiography, Substance: Inside New Order, which is released on October 6.
He says (via the Guardian): “Yes I loved her, yes she could be very funny, and there were times I felt privileged to have a private audience with such a great comic talent.
“But she was also a very troubled person and nowhere did that manifest itself more than in our relationship.”
Describing one of the first violent episodes, Hook says: “She attacked me, using her nails to scratch at my neck, tearing off my necklace and ripping my top. It was proper shocking stuff.
“And although she was really contrite the next morning, it marked the beginning of some serious screaming-banshee behaviour – putting cigarettes out on my arm, attacking me with bottles, knives, chairs and other assorted furniture.
“It would be set off by the slightest thing – talking or looking at another woman was a favourite.”
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Hook says the abuse was to blame for his depression. He adds: “I was an abused husband and it’s embarrassing, and you feel ashamed, and you can’t tell anyone. I needed help.”
The couple split after an incident in which, Hook claims, he feared Aherne was going to stab him.
Hook has come in for criticism from some who question the timing of the claims as they come so close to the publication of his book. But the Mankind Initiative – a charity for male victims of domestic abuse – praised his decision to talk about the abuse.