Page last updated at 10:05 GMT, Saturday, 13 March 2010

Take That star Mark Owen checks into rehab

Mark Owen
Mark Owen said he had not cheated since he got married

Take That star Mark Owen has checked himself into rehab days after admitting he had a drink problem and had cheated on his partner of five years.

A spokesman for the 38-year-old said: "I can confirm Mark checked into a private clinic on Friday."

"I have had issues for a long time. I've drunk for the last 10 years and it got to a bad point," the singer told The Sun newspaper on Thursday.

He also admitted he was unfaithful to his wife before they married in 2009.

'Difficult time'

Owen said he was "deeply sorry" that he had cheated with several women during his relationship with Emma Ferguson, the mother of his two children.

But he insisted he had been faithful since marrying her.

In a statement he said: "I'm so deeply sorry for the pain my actions have caused my family and friends."

The singer added: "I'd like to ask the media to please respect the privacy of my wife and children during this difficult time."

Owen, who won Celebrity Big Brother in 2002, said he had not recognised how bad his drinking had got.

I have been a prat. I wasn't thinking - I don't think logically when I'm drunk
Mark Owen

"I carried on drinking through my relationship with Emma and it got to the point where she asked me to stop.

"I've never liked drinking during the day but once the kids went to bed, I'd get the bottle open and off I went.

"I have been a prat. I wasn't thinking - I don't think logically when I'm drunk. I'm not the person I want to be when I'm drunk. I can be a nightmare to live with."

Owen admitted the affairs to his wife on Wednesday and his confession was published in Thursday's edition of the paper.

The star, who has enjoyed phenomenal success with Take That since they reunited in 2005, said he was "proud" of the fact he had not cheated since tying the knot.

"I know that sounds really stupid but on our wedding day, for me the ring is really important and I want to be true to my word."

The couple married at Cawdor Parish Church, near Inverness in Scotland, followed by a reception at Cawdor Castle.

"It was a big moment for me, my wedding day," Owen said.

"The wedding for me was a new slate and a new start. In my head there was never a time when I was doubting getting married."

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