David Bowie death
David Bowie has died at the age of 69 after an 18-month battle with cancer REUTERS/David W Cerny DWC/WS

Celebrity Big Brother producers are preparing to break the news of David Bowie's death to his former wife, Angie Bowie. The Space Oddity hit maker passed away on 10 January – two days after his 69th birthday – following a secret 18-month battle with cancer.

Angie Bowie
Angie Bowie will be informed by CBB producers about Bowie's death Twitter

A statement released by Channel 5 confirmed Angie, who is a contestant on the latest series of Celebrity Big Brother, does not yet know the British rock legend is dead and will be told the tragic news off-camera as soon as possible.

Although participants on CBB have no contact with the outside world, exceptions are made in the case of family emergencies or deaths.

"Following the very sad news of David Bowie's death this morning, we can confirm that Angie Bowie will be informed off camera today at the earliest opportunity," a spokesperson told IBTimes UK. "We will update further once this has taken place."

Angie was married to the pop star for a decade before their split in 1980 and the couple have a son together. The 66-year-old, who acted as Bowie's manager when they were married, recently admitted she had not spoken to her ex-husband for almost 40 years, since their bitter divorce. "He hates me," she said. "He came to visit at first, and then he didn't want to visit me anymore."

According to the statement released on the musician's Facebook page, he died surrounded by his loved ones: "David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous 18-month battle with cancer. While many of you will share in this loss, we ask that you respect the family's privacy during their time of grief."