Singer and former Loose Women star Jane McDonald has announced that her partner, musician Eddie Rothe, has died aged 67 after being diagnosed with lung cancer.

A statement shared on her Twitter account said Rothe, best-known for being part of Mersey Beat group The Searchers, who were big in the 1960s, had been battling the disease "for the last few months".

He died on March 26 and the funeral took place on Wednesday.

The statement, shared alongside a picture of McDonald, 58, and Rothe smiling together, said: "It is with immense sadness that we share the news that Jane's beloved long term partner, Ed, passed away on Friday 26th March. He had been battling lung cancer for the last few months.

"We would like to thank everyone for all their help and support during this very difficult time, especially the NHS staff and the wonderful team at The Wakefield Hospice.

"The funeral took place earlier today and we would please ask for your kindness in observing Jane's privacy for her and Ed's family at this sad time."

McDonald and Rothe first dated as teenagers before rekindling their romance almost 30 years later after a chance meeting on the set of This Morning. They got engaged in 2008.

McDonald, who also hosted the Channel 5 show Cruising With Jane McDonald, wrote about their relationship in her 2019 autobiography Riding The Waves: My Story.