Gary Barlow has opened up on the "incomprehensible" loss of his baby daughter, Poppy.

The Take That singer and his wife Dawn welcomed baby Poppy on 4 August, 2012. She was stillborn at full term, just days before Gary and his band were due to perform at the closing ceremony of the London Olympics.

In an extract from his upcoming autobiography, A Better Me, which has been serialised in Britains's The Sun newspaper, Gary revealed the emotional toll of saying goodbye to their daughter, and confessed he was "filled with dread" for his wife, who had to have her labour induced so she could give birth to Poppy.

"When she was born it was like a light came into the room. It was lovely, it was gorgeous, we both took turns cuddling her, and we took pictures," the heartbroken father wrote. "It was one of the best hours of my life I’ve ever experienced in the midst of the hardest time of my life. It was very powerful, that hour was."

Gary and Dawn were able to spend an hour with their "perfect" and "beautiful" daughter, before nurses came in to take her away.

"It felt like someone had a hand held tight at my throat. What we experienced and saw over those 24 hours, no-one should have to see or have to go through," he wrote.

He devastatingly added: "There’s no sadder sight than seeing a mum with her dead baby in her arms, willing it back to life with all her being."

The 47-year-old threw himself into work in the year after Poppy's death, and was then hit with the agonising news that Dawn was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.

"I had seen grief quite literally physically destroy my wife’s body so that she was left with a chronic illness that she will never get better from," he wrote.

Gary added he hopes sharing Poppy's story will encourage others to talk about the loss of their children.

"After Poppy died, people wrote to me about suffering the same awful experience. Many had kept so much of it locked away in secret. I’ve wondered about the value and purpose in sharing something so private, but I’d have been denying Poppy her legacy not to," he explained.

Gary and Dawn wed in 2000, and have three other children; Daniel, Emily and Daisy.