Peter Jones, 53, (pictured) found his lover Paula Williamson’s lifeless body in bed in the early hours of Monday
The new lover of notorious con Charles Bronson’s ex-wife has told of the moment he discovered her lifeless body on the bed.
Tragic Coronation Street star Paula Williamson was discovered dead at home after a night out by her new boyfriend Pete Jones after a night out with friends.
Speaking to MailOnline, shaken Mr Jones, 53, denied reports the 38-year-old actress was laying on top of a ‘bed of cocaine and tablets’.
‘It was me who found her,’ said the truck driver who had been in a relationship with Paula since February.
‘She got home and had a nightcap with me and then went up to bed. She was sprawled out across the bed so I went downstairs and fell asleep on the sofa.
‘I came upstairs at 6.30am. She was laying there perfectly still.
‘I held her hand. I tried to gently wake her up by kissing her forehead, but she wasn’t responding.
‘I held her onto her, kissed her and stroked her. But then I started to panic, I couldn’t wake her.
Paul (pictured), the Coronation Street actress who is the ex-wife of notorious prisoner Charles Bronson, died after partying on Sunday night in her home town of Stoke-on-Trent, Staffs
Mr Jones showed MailOnline the last picture of him and Paula together taken in May and said the couple were ‘blissfully happy together’ and were making plans to marry
Paula, who was in the process of having her marriage to Bronson annulled, died in this house in Stoke-on-Trent. Mr Jones said he found her dead on the bed at 6.30am on Monday
Paula (left) married Bronson (right), the country’s longest-serving and most violent prisoner, in 2017, after becoming pen pals with him – but the lifer called off their marriage when he saw photos of her having her breasts kissed by a male admirer while on holiday in Spain last year
‘I could see she wasn’t breathing. I was desperate to wake her up. I was trying for… I don’t know how long, maybe 10 minutes, but nothing happened. She wouldn’t wake up.’
Mr Jones dialled 999 and an ambulance rushed to Paula’s home in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire – but paramedics couldn’t save her. Police have confirmed the death is not being treated as suspicious.
The 53-year-old said Paula and her friends had enjoyed a booze-fuelled Sunday night – but insisted they hadn’t taken drugs.
A post mortem is due to take place to determine the cause of Paula’s death, but Mr Jones is adamant that it was not drug-related, as some ‘friends’ have claimed.
‘She was lying there, but there was no cocaine or tablets,’ he said.
‘People are trying to make her look bad, which is what they have always done.’
Mr Jones said he met Paula five months ago – after her marriage to ‘Britain’s most dangerous prisoner’ Bronson broke down.
Bronson, 66, who has served 44 years in jail for armed robbery and other crimes, was furious when he saw photos of his wife partying in Spain when two revellers were pictured kissing her breasts.
Paula appeared on Loose Women last year to admit she had a problem with drink and prescription drugs – but Mr Jones said despite having anxiety, she was happy before she died
Bronson, 66, (above) saw his ex-wife appear on the ITV show and apparently hauntingly told friends that if she didn’t sort her life out he feared she would be dead within two years
Paula had kept their relationship secret from all but close friends and family while the paper work on her split from Bronson was finalised.
But in May they had ‘PP’ for ‘Pete and Paula’ tattoos – he had the ink on his arm and she had the design on her stomach.
And Mr Jones, who moved down to Staffordshire from Chester, said the couple were so blissfully happy that they were making plans to marry in the Bahamas when her marriage annulment to Bronson came through.
But on Monday morning their dreams were shattered.
Paula pictured when she was Bronson’s fiance in 2017, trying on her wedding dress
Paula was found dead just hours after it was reported Bronson wanted to marry again declaring his love for a ‘pensioner called Joan’.
The actress had appeared on Loose Women last year and admitted that she had a problem with alcohol and prescription medication.
She later said she had depression, anxiety and borderline personality disorder.
Indeed Bronson himself said after her Loose Women appearance that she would be dead in two years if she didn’t sort herself out.
Mr Jones admitted that Paula had suffered from anxiety in the past month – and had felt unwell 24 hours before her death in the early hours of Monday morning.
But he added: ‘She was very happy. And very much in love. So was I. She got through some difficult times. We were making plans.
‘We were going to set a date to be married in the Bahamas. She had set her heart on that. That was her dream we were going to do it for her fortieth birthday in August next year. We were waiting for the annulment to come through.’
Shell-shocked by the harrowing events of the previous 24 hours, Mr Jones paid tribute to his love as he sat on the sofa of Paula’s semi-detached home in the Midlands.
Surrounded by pictures of her family and friends, as well as light-hearted coasters, plaques and posters with messages like, ‘Home Sweet Home’, ‘Save Water, Drink Prosecco’ and ‘Drama Queen’, Mr Jones said: ‘She was not the person everyone portrays her as. She did not have lots of relationships.
‘She was amazing, she was lovely and loving. She would do anything for you. She always had a smile and she was such a positive person. She had such a lovely heart.’
Mr Jones, the father of three grown-up children by an earlier marriage, said Paula had been out to sing Karaoke with friends on Sunday evening at a bar in Stoke-on-Trent. Her party pieces were by Madonna.
The group had been drinking and attempted to enter a couple of clubs after singing their hearts out, but were too late and came home in a taxi. The couple shared another drink with a friend before Paula went to bed.
Tragic Paula, 38, holds a card featuring a photo of Charles Bronson on the front in July 2017
‘She was having a good night,’ said Mr Jones.
‘I said ‘I love you so much’ and she smiled and said ‘I love you, too’,’ recalled Mr Jones. ‘Those were the last words I said to her.’
The couple came to know each other through Facebook via mutual friends. They met up, went for a drink and struck up a warm friendship before romance fluorished, despite Mr Jones being 15 years Paula’s senior.
‘She trusted me, she always felt safe and she knew I would not judge her,’ he said.
Mr Jones is uneasy speaking about Paula’s previous relationship with Bronson, but thinks she has been treated unfairly.
Her relationship with the convict, the country’s longest-serving prisoner, also began as pen pals. The unlikely romance with the lag blossomed when Bronson serenaded Paula down the phone with Frank Sinatra’s ‘My Way’ on Valentine’s Day in 2017.
They were married in a blaze of publicity in a bizarre ceremony at HMP Wakefield in November 2017 in front of five witnesses with Bronson handcuffed to a warder.
However, the relationship soured after Paula put weight on and Bronson reportedly called her a ‘fat cow’. Meanwhile, he was left outraged by a photograph of the actress with a man’s head in her breasts on holiday in Tenerife.
The marriage was never consummated and Paula applied for an annulment and only last week was told by the court it had been approved.
‘[The relationship with Bronson] was already over when I met Paula,’ said Mr Jones. ‘She had moved on and he had moved on as well.’
Tragically, the events of Monday morning have cut Paula’s life short. A notice hanging on the garden gate outside Paula’s modest home reads ‘The Future is Bright’, but sat inside the house her boyfriend cuts a disconsolate figure.
‘I am heart broken,’ he said. ‘Devastated. This was the love of my life.’