Alex has been diagnosed with skin cancer and has undergone a procedure to remove tissue from her face. Picture: Instagram

Paul Hollywood’s estranged wife Alex has been diagnosed with skin cancer and has undergone a procedure to remove tissue from her face.

The 54-year-old said it was a ‘wake-up call’ and that she now regrets spending years in the sun without adequate protection.

The professional chef, who split from the Bake Off star in 2017, posted a video on Instagram to encourage fans to have any skin abnormalities checked by a GP.

Pointing out a small plaster on her nose, she explained she had been diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma, a benign skin cancer.

‘It did freak me out,’ the mother-of-one admitted. ‘But he sent me to a specialist who sorted it out straight away and very painlessly. I’ve got a couple of marks but they’re going to fade. Everything’s going to be fine and go back to normal.’

Hollywood said she was ‘lucky’ and urged people to see a doctor if they notice any marks or moles that change shape.

In a post alongside the video, she wrote: ‘I wanted you lot to see this because I know that we’re all scared of the C-word.’

She added that her situation was ‘no big deal’ but described it as ‘payback for those years I spent poolside and mucking around in boats as a scuba instructor, in and out of the water with little or no sunscreen’.

Hollywood met her husband in 1996 while she was working as a scuba instructor in Cyprus and he was head baker in a five-star hotel.

They separated in November 2017 after 20 years of marriage, with Hollywood saying her husband had cheated on her – a claim he denies.

Hollywood, 53, is now living with his 24-year-old girlfriend, Summer Monteys-Fullam.

Basal cell carcinoma makes up more than 80 per cent of all skin cancers in the UK, with more than 100,000 cases diagnosed a year.

Daily Mail