Hugh Jackman's mother insists she was devastated when she decided to quit the family's Australian home, when the Hollywood star was only eight years old.

GRACE WATSON walked out on the Van Helsing actor, his four siblings and father CHRIS to return to her native Britain.

Jackson arrived home one day from school to find his mother had left. She sent him a telegram the next day to say she wasn't returning.

Watson says, "It's not something I'm proud of and I must have been desperate.

"Looking back, I don't think I made the right decision, but I don't regret it because it isn't something I can change. I felt they were better off where they were.

"Perhaps I should have stayed but my children have grown up well-adjusted and happy."

23/05/2004 10:24