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Last Updated: Friday, 5 September, 2003, 19:18 GMT 20:18 UK
Cilla speaks of burglary horror
Cilla wearing some of the jewels stolen by the burglars
Cilla Black said she was still angry about the burglary
Cilla Black has told how she believed she would be dead if she had been in her home when it was burgled.

The Liverpool-born star - who had jewellery and other items valued at 1m stolen in August - said she would have "lost it" with the masked intruders.

The former Blind Date host told BBC 5 Live presenter Simon Mayo on Friday the three burglars would have needed paramedics standing by if she ever met them.

Her home in Denham, Buckinghamshire, was burgled in a raid while she was on holiday with Sir Cliff Richard in Portugal.

Her son Jack, who was at home, was beaten and a knife was held to his throat.

I'm angry that they took a knife to my baby, my son's throat, and threatened to kill him if they didn't get what they wanted
Cilla Black
He persuaded them to leave him in the house, rather than abduct him.

"He doesn't take after me, he definitely takes after his father," said Cilla, whose husband Bobby died in 1999.

She added: "You can take the girl out of Liverpool but you can't take Liverpool out of the girl. I know I would have lost it.

"I would have been dead, as simple as that. I would have said 'You want to slit my throat? Give me the knife I'll do it, I'll save you the job'.

'Natural reaction'

She added: "For 24 hours I wished every deadly disease, not only on them but their family - and 24 hours later I was so upset that I could even think these things.

"Now I'm angry. I'm angry that they took a knife to my baby, my son's throat and threatened to kill him if they didn't get what they wanted."

She added: "I'm so proud of Jack. He did have a go - which was foolish, but that was a natural reaction.

"He was hit with a crowbar. He was overwhelmed by three of them, and they had his face down on the floor with his hands handcuffed behind his back, with a knife to his throat."

When asked how she would feel if she met the attackers, she said: "You'd have to have paramedics standing by. Not for me, definitely not for me."

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