TELEVISION presenter Sian Lloyd has opened up for the first time about her harrowing experience with a mystery stalker.
Speaking with the S4C current affairs programme, Y Byd ar Bedwar, 58-year-old Maesteg-born Sian Lloyd revealed she is no longer comfortable alone in her own house, after an incident last year.
“Sadly I think it’s completely changed my life,” Sian Lloyd said. “I’ve gone from someone hyper-confident, carefree, going from one thing to another, never looking over my shoulder. Now I look over my shoulder mentally and physically.”
The weather presenter revealed that during her long and illustrious TV career she has often been the subject of stalkers’ attention. However one particular experience has left a lasting impression as it targeted her in her own home.
The stalker was present at a rally event where Sian Lloyd had been presenting awards. After returning to her Mid-Wales home she was shocked at what was waiting for her.
“Having driven up from London with my husband, loads of letters and right on top was a handwritten letter. I opened it and a picture fell out of the most revolting close up of what we shall say was a man in a state of excitement, a man’s private parts and it could not have been a bigger close up.
“And there was an accompanying letter that said ‘this is for you and there’s plenty more where that came from’ and he even gave his phone number.”
Despite leaving the phone number, police were unable to trace the culprit. Sian Lloyd said the incident has left her paranoid and constantly suspicious when out and about.
It is now four years since wide-ranging laws against stalking were introduced in Wales and England. Over the past year (2015/16) more than 1,000 prosecution proceedings have opened for alleged stalking in Wales and England, compared with 12,000 for the offence of harassment.
A survey by Yougov in April suggested the risk of being stalked online is increasing across the UK.
The most common form of stalking is by partners or ex-partners when a relationship ends, but in 10 per cent of cases the stalker has no previous connection to the victim.
This was the case with Sian Lloyd and she says her experiences of stalking have had a life-altering effect.
“I resent his intrusion enormously. You could say he’s done me a favour as I’m incredibly alert because of what could go wrong, and it might sound as if I’m a scaredy-cat or paranoid but better that than the possibility of a tragic outcome.”
To see the full interview, watch y Byd ar Bedwar on Tuesday at 9.30pm on S4C, English subtitles available.