Leaving school at 17 to become a window dresser by trade, Sheila also became a part time cat walk model for the acclaimed Lucie Clayton Agency in Manchester, following in the footsteps of models such as Jean Shrimpton. The bright lights beckoned, and after studying dance and drama locally in Bolton, Sheila went on over the years to work with touring shows and three stage hypnotists; the most prominent being Peter Casson who went onto to pioneer treatment for what he called “Aquaphobia” – the fear of water.
During the early eighties, Sheila formed an illusionist act with partner Les Brown called “Duo Magicana” and toured throughout Europe (she is still affectionately known today to Master Illusionist Paul Daniels as ‘Mad Ethyl’) later working as a cabaret dancer and showgirl in Zurich and Geneva, Switzerland for several months of each year. Shelia headed back to the UK to settle in Blackpool when her son, Nathan was born in 1985 and returned to the stage shortly afterwards, as a part time singer in the resort and duplication engineer for several years in a recording studio.
After their marriage in September 1998, Sheila lived with Fred at his home in Bolton. She used her skill and experience gained through many years in the entertainment industry to assist with his increasingly busy life in the public eye after a career spanning from 1977 to 2004 on television.
She peppers her speeches with fabulous stories of what it was really like to live with a much loved celebrity and television presenter who installed a mine shaft in his back yard? There are things only a wife can know…and you will love this respectful, funny, upbeat and very informative presentation of life with a true, Great British Eccentric. Stories such as the time she faced an unharnessed climb up a 250ft factory Chimney with Fred before going on honeymoon to… Wigan Pier - on a Steam Roller! Audiences roar with laughter when they hear about how Fred sported a black wig and sparkly shirt in public, wore a fake fur coat at the top of a chimney for a bet and made use of bricks and spanners at their wedding reception.