Abi Titmuss

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Abi Titmuss
Abi Titmuss.jpg
Abi Titmuss at the 2008 World Series of Poker
Born (1976-02-08) 8 February 1976 (age 38)[1]
Newark-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire, England

Abigail Evelyn "Abi" Titmuss[2] born 8 February 1976 in Newark, Nottinghamshire,[2] is an English actress, television personality and former glamour model.

Early life[edit]

Titmuss grew up in Heckington, Lincolnshire where her parents were teachers. She took her A levels at Kesteven and Sleaford High School where she played the clarinet. Her parents divorced when she was 17 and her father moved to Argyll, Scotland, where he remarried.

Nursing[edit]

Titmuss graduated from City University in St Bartholomew's Hospital in 1998. She did a nursing diploma "because I was interested in becoming a doctor, but hadn't taken A level Chemistry"[3] and became a staff nurse at London's University College Hospital.

Television and radio[edit]

Titmuss was hired as a roving reporter on the Channel 4 programme Richard & Judy, but was sacked in January 2004 when it emerged that she had been privately filmed in 2000 performing oral sex on her then boyfriend, John Leslie and on female model Aisha Abubakar.[4] The footage was downloaded without permission from a private computer by convicted criminal, Lanre Onabowale, currently serving 18-years in jail for four counts of rape[5] who made it public.[6][7]

Titmuss appeared on ITV1's Celebrity Love Island. Other television work includes training as a chef on the 2004 series of Hell's Kitchen and in 2005, she appeared on Channel 4's The Friday Night Project as a regular guest feature and also in Abi Titmuss: A Modern Day Morality Tale, a fly-on-the-wall documentary for Channel 4. She has also starred on a celebrity edition of Channel 4's Come Dine With Me with Paul Ross, Lesley Joseph, Linda Lusardi and Rodney Marsh.[8]

Titmuss also appeared on the reality series Deadline with Janet Street Porter on ITV2. The show followed a number of celebrities as they attempted to produce a celebrity-based magazine each week, published as a supplement to Closer. Titmuss was the fourth celebrity to be sacked from the show.

She has guest-presented shows on Virgin Radio, MTV and LBC radio.

Glamour[edit]

I'm not like those glamour girls who say: 'I'm really dirty, I'm really bad', then just pose around. I really am dirty and bad - I love sex.[9]

She took up presenting on a pornographic channel Television X, released a fitness video, put her name to an erotic novel published by Black Lace and made personal appearances in nightclubs in the UK and Ireland. An initial offer of a photo shoot over two pages of FHM morphed into a three-page spread and a cover. In December 2004, Titmuss appeared on the front cover of FHM with Swedish model Victoria Silvstedt. In 2004 and 2005, she made 38 front-page appearances on British men's magazines, such as FHM, Nuts, Zoo Weekly, loaded, GQ and Maxim magazines. She also appeared in the Sunday Times Style and in glamour pictures in several tabloid newspapers including The Sun, News of the World, Daily Mirror, The People and Daily Star.

In 2005, Titmuss was ranked 7th by readers in FHM's list of 100 Sexiest Women in the World. She started writing a regular sex advice column for the magazine the same year. At the height of her fame in 2004/05, Titmuss would be paid a modelling fee of up to £30,000 a day for appearing on the front page of Nuts or Zoo.[10] In 2005, Titmuss appeared in a high fashion shoot in Pop magazine, which commented on her status as the "face of 21st century celebrity".

In her memoir, Titmuss states how she quickly realised that she wanted more control after seeing magazines pay her for one shoot and then sell the pictures many times over. So, she started paying for and directing her own shoots, thus owning the copyright over them and selling them herself, along with her manager.[11]

In December 2004, Titmuss appeared on the front cover of FHM again, with Swedish model Victoria Silvstedt, "marking," as she wrote, "the first time a girl was on the FHM cover twice in one year."

After taking a break from modelling, Titmuss relaunched her glamour career in 2007, this time as a brunette, with an appearance on the cover of Zoo Weekly and the sale of the official "Abi Titmuss Calendar". On 25 April that year, it was announced that Titmuss had made an appearance for a third time in FHM's annual 100 Sexiest Women in the World readers' poll, at number 80. She had been number 95 in 2004 and number 7 in 2005.[12]

After announcing in late 2007 that she would take a break from her glamour modelling career to concentrate on acting, Titmuss returned with a Nuts shoot in April 2009 to promote one more calendar.

Acting[edit]

Titmuss first acted during her university studies and then took part-time acting courses at the Central School of Speech and Drama, paid for from her nursing work. After reducing her glamour model work, Titmuss took a further short acting course at the same establishment.

According to her memoir, the first theatre producer to audition her for a role was Marc Sinden:

25th February 2004: Today I had my audition for Marc Sinden. Marc was really lovely and put me at my ease. Marc directed me and got me to do it a couple of times. He told me at the end that he hadn't known what to expect from me, but that I had really surprised him. I was recalled for a second audition.
5th March 2004: Second audition - When I finished he sat me down and looked me in the eye and said "In my opinion Abi, you can do it. You can act. You've got that special something. I think you need someone to tell you that, don't you?" I was embarrassed to find I was crying. It was the sound of someone validating my shaky belief in my ability. I didn't get the job and he was right. I was far too raw. But I did walk out of there with my head held higher. Marc's kind words had encouraged me to follow my dream. He said that he would remember me. I wonder if he will?[13]

In March 2006, Titmuss made her London theatre acting début, playing a prostitute with a multiple personality disorder in Two Way Mirror by Arthur Miller, at the Courtyard Theatre in King's Cross,[14] for which she won a Fringe Report Award for Best West End Début.[15]

In 2006, Titmuss had a small role in the film Goal! 2 and in 2007 appeared in the second series première of Rob Brydon's Annually Retentive, which aired on BBC Three and as a character called Gezebelle in an episode of Katy Brand's Big Ass Show, a sketch comedy series for ITV2.

Between 26 February and 23 March 2008, Titmuss appeared in the black comedy Fat Christ at the King's Head Theatre in Islington, London.

She has been cast in small roles in British independent films Do Elephants Pray? and Mixed Up. In 2008 she played the role of the 'Mysterious Girl' in Beat 24 Films UK independent feature film Frontman.[16]

In 2009 she was cast in the 25th anniversary production of John Godber's play Up 'n' Under at the newly refurbished Hull Truck Theatre, Hull. Titmuss played the role of Hazel the fitness instructor, starring alongside James Crossley (formerly the Gladiator "Hunter") and soap actor Lewis Linford ("Lee Naylor" in Emmerdale). She also had a part in the BBC TV series Hotel Babylon, playing a nun.

From November until December 2009, Titmuss appeared in Shakespeare's Macbeth, playing the character of Lady Macbeth with the Seagull Rep. This production opened at the Seagull Theatre in Lowestoft before transferring to other East Anglian venues.[17]

On 18 February 2012, she played the role of Tara Edmonds in an episode of BBC TV's Casualty.[18] She said that landing the part gave her a sense of self-esteem that she had lost doing the glamour work.[10]

Publications[edit]

In 2005, Titmuss produced a book, co-written with Jayne Lockwood, called Ten Fantasies (), in which she reveals her "ten most secret sexual fantasies." She stated that she did not want her mother to read it.[19]

On 24 July 2008, her memoir, titled The Secret Diaries of Abigail Titmuss, on which she collaborated with Heat journalist Lucie Cave, was published.[20]

Personal life[edit]

Titmuss first came to public attention as the girlfriend of TV presenter John Leslie whom she met in a Fulham bar on 10 April 1999.[21] She also claimed in her memoir that she has had relationships with former footballer and reality television personality Lee Sharpe, whom she met on the ITV1 show Celebrity Love Island, and English actor, author, and television presenter David Walliams.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Abi Titmuss". AskMen.com. 2008-01-29. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  2. ^ a b "England & Wales births: Abigail Evelyn Titmuss". FindMyPast. 2013-03-15. Retrieved 2013-03-15. 
  3. ^ Secret Diaries p.9
  4. ^ "My hell over shabby Abi orgy", Daily Mirror, 7 November 2004
  5. ^ Robin Perrie (3 August 2007). "Abi sex vid man is a rapist". The Sun. Retrieved 8 May 2013. 
  6. ^ Secret Diaries
  7. ^ "'I was labelled a monster and thought about killing myself': John Leslie opens up about how false rape claims ruined his life". Daily Mail. 2013-01-06. Retrieved 2013-05-08. 
  8. ^ "Episode 14 - Celebrity Come Dine with Me - Abi Titmuss". Channel4. 1 February 2009. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  9. ^ "Abi Titmuss is gagging for a man", FemaleFirst, 12 January 2009
  10. ^ a b "Abi Titmuss on her battle for self-respect: I was making £30,000 a day but I could feel my lack of talent as though I was wearing it", Daily Mail, 19 February 2012
  11. ^ Secret Diaries
  12. ^ "The full list of FHM's 100 Sexiest Women in the World 2007". Daily Mail. 26 April 2007. Retrieved 2010-12-21. 
  13. ^ Secret Diaries pp. 92, 96-97
  14. ^ "Abi Titmuss on the latest stage in her colourful life", The Independent, 25 February 2006
  15. ^ Fringe Report Awards 2007
  16. ^ Frontman IMDB Page
  17. ^ Kendall, Paul (2009-11-08). "Abi Titmuss: Glamour girl to Lady Macbeth". Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 11 November 2009. Retrieved 2009-12-07. 
  18. ^ Glennie, Alasdair (24 May 2013). "Ten years after that sex storm, John Leslie and Abi Titmuss are singletons at opposite ends of the country". Daily Mail. Retrieved 1 June 2014. 
  19. ^ "Abi Titmuss bans mum from reading raunchy book", FemaleFirst, 11 July 2005
  20. ^ "Abi Titmuss' life spiralled out of control after Lee Sharpe love split". Sunday Mirror. 13 July 2008. Archived from the original on 29 June 2014. Retrieved 2008-07-13. 
  21. ^ Secret Diaries p.8

References[edit]

External links[edit]