By KATHERINE KNIGHT
Iconic: Amy Winehouse and husband Blake Fielder-Civil enjoy a cigarette break in Soho, New York, at the height of their love affair
Earlier this week, Georgette Fielder-Civil’s husband made a grim prediction. ‘He said I had to prepare for the worst about our son Blake,’ she says. ‘That we would be burying him within five years.’
A heartbreaking notion for any mother, but one that Georgette finds it difficult to contradict, given the events of recent days.
Last weekend, Blake’s former wife, Amy Winehouse, was found dead at her north London home at the age of just 27.
Blake Fielder-Civil's mother, Georgette, has spoken for the first time since Amy Winehouse's death: 'We all played our part in what happened to her,' she says
While the cause of her death has still not yet been established, there is no doubt that drugs were responsible for turning the once vivacious singer into an emaciated wreck who would lurch publicly from one crisis to another.
Amy was locked in a grim downward spiral with which Georgette, 48, can all too readily identify. A respectable, middle-class mother from a picturesque Nottinghamshire village, she has been left helpless in the face of her own privately-educated son’s descent from promising musician into hopeless addict.
Destructive relationship: Amy met Blake in 2004 and there began a partnership that saw them both descend into drug and alcohol abuse
Her greatest fear now is that it will not be long before he follows Amy to the grave.
She has also had to contend with suggestions from Amy’s fans and family that it was Winehouse’s chaotic five-year relationship with her son that sent the singer off the rails — that effectively, Blake has Amy’s blood on his hands.
It is a sentiment that fills her with sorrow, and one which she believes masks a more unpalatable truth.
Wrecked: This now infamous image was taken as the couple left London's luxury Sanderson Hotel. Amy is bruised, smudged and has blood on her feet, while Blake's face has been scratched
‘I am not asking anyone to say “poor Blake” — he made his choices and he has to live with them,’ she says in her first interview since Amy’s death.
‘I’m not trying to defend his behaviour and I know him for what he is: he’s an addict and he has done some terrible things. He feels enormous grief and responsibility for some of the things that have happened, as well he should. But I also think he’s been made the fall guy for what happened to Amy, when the truth is, in fact, far more complicated.
‘We all played our part in what happened to her. I have had to look deep into my heart and wonder if I could have helped, done things differently.’
Volatile: Amy with Blake at the MTV Awards in 2007, left. A year later, she attended Snaresbrook Crown Court in London with Georgette, right, where she saw Blake jailed for 27 months
Yet Georgette’s main complaint is that Amy’s father, Mitch, was virulently opposed to her relationship with Blake, believing the young addict was a disastrous influence on her.
Many would find his concerns only too understandable — yet Georgette insists, whatever his own failings, that Blake’s devotion to Amy was the mainstay of the singer’s life.
Out of control: Amy was herself no stranger to law-breaking, pictured here in 2010 arriving at Milton Keynes Magistrates Court before she admitted common assault
‘Amy frequently said that the only person who could fix her was Blake.
‘She spoke to Blake the whole time before she died. Friends of Blake’s have told me that she telephoned him in prison the day before she died and asked if he could arrange for a visiting order.
Disapproving: Amy's mother Janis and father Mitch, pictured here last week looking at tributes left outside the late singer's home, never liked Blake and believed he introduced her to hard drugs
But she also knew that it would cause trouble. In one of the last conversations I had with her she said: “I can’t tell Dad I’m talking to you as he’d go mad and it’s not worth it.”
‘Blake and Amy could have had a chance of happiness — I truly believe that — but only if their families were both behind them. I honestly believe that if they’d been given another chance, Amy might still be with us. Now we will never know.’
Grief: Mitch is consoled by friends while he attends his daughter funeral at Golders Green Crematorium in north London
Tragic waste: Tributes outside Amy's home show the devastation of fans. Blake, her ex-husband, is said to be so overcome with grief that he can't get out of his prison bed