Abi Titmuss at the 2008 World Series of Poker
Abigail Evelyn Titmuss|
8 February 1976
Newark-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire, England
|Residence||Los Angeles County, California, US|
|Other names||Abigail Evelyn|
Early life and education
Born in Newark, Nottinghamshire, 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. When she was 17, her parents divorced and her father moved to Argyll, Scotland, where he remarried.
Titmuss graduated from City University in St Bartholomew's Hospital in 1998. She did a nursing diploma, because she "was interested in becoming a doctor, but hadn't taken A level Chemistry" and became a staff nurse at London's University College Hospital.
Television and radio
Titmuss was hired as a roving reporter on the Channel 4 programme Richard & Judy, in late 2003, and stated at the time that the job was "an absolute dream come true". She lost her job in January 2004 following allegations of group sex with her boyfriend John Leslie. A sex tape from four years earlier emerged, in which she had been privately filmed having sex with Leslie and aspiring female model Aisha Abubakar. The footage was downloaded without permission from a private computer and made public by "conman" Lanre Onabowale, subsequently convicted to serve 18 years in jail for four counts of rape.
In the 2004 series of Hell's Kitchen, she trained as a chef. In 2005, Titmuss appeared on Channel 4's The Friday Night Project as a regular guest, in Abi Titmuss: A Modern Day Morality Tale, a fly-on-the-wall documentary for Channel 4 and on ITV1's Celebrity Love Island.
Titmuss 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.
Titmuss took up presenting on 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 along with Swedish model Victoria Silvstedt. In 2004 and 2005, she made a total of 38 front-page appearances on British men's magazines, such as FHM, Nuts, Zoo Weekly, Loaded, GQ and Maxim. She also appeared in the Sunday Times Style section 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 seventh 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. 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. Accordingly, she started paying for and directing her own shoots, thus owning the copyright over them and selling them herself, along with her manager.
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 was ranked number 95 in 2004, and number 7 in 2005.
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.
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.
|“||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?
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, for which she won a Fringe Report Award for Best West End Début.
In 2006, Titmuss had a small role in the film Goal! 2 and in 2007 appeared in the second series premiere 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.
She has been cast in small roles in the British independent films Do Elephants Pray? and Mixed Up. In 2008, she played the "Mysterious Girl" in the Beat 24 Films independent feature film Frontman.
In 2009, Titmuss 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 Hazel, the fitness instructor, starring alongside James Crossley (formerly the "Hunter" in Gladiator) 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. The production opened at the Seagull Theatre in Lowestoft before transferring to other East Anglian venues.
On 18 February 2012, she played the role of Tara Edmonds in an episode of BBC TV's Casualty. She said that landing the part gave her a sense of self-esteem that she had lost doing the glamour work.
In an article published by The Daily Mail in January 2015, Titmuss announced that she had changed her name to Abigail Evelyn, in the context of her relocation to Hollywood, California and her attempts to establish a new career as an actress.
Titmuss started playing poker "seriously" around 2001. In 2008, Titmuss played in the charity, side-event "Ante Up For Africa" of the World Series of Poker, in Las Vegas. Ladbrokes Poker started sponsoring her in 2005, when she appeared in the first Ladbrokes Poker European Ladies Championship.
|24 July 2008|
|Media type||Print (hardcover, paperback)|
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.
On 24 July 2008, her memoir, titled The Secret Diaries of Abigail Titmuss, on which she collaborated with Heat journalist Lucie Cave, was published by Headline Review. It is written in the form of a diary and is a day-to-day summary of her life for the past six years. It includes an indepth look into the trial of Titmuss' then boyfriend, John Leslie, at the time when he had been accused of rape, her rise to fame and how she dealt with the tabloids invading her life.
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. 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. In 2017, she married Days Of Our Lives co-star Ari Welkom.
- Titmuss, Abi & Jayne Lockwood. Ten Fantasies, Virgin Books, July 2005, ISBN 9780753510377
- Titmuss, Abi & Lucie Cave. The Secret Diaries of Abigail Titmuss, Headline Review, July 2008, ISBN 9780755317905
- "Abi Titmuss". AskMen.com. 29 January 2008. Archived from the original on 9 March 2008. Retrieved 21 December 2010.
- "Abi Titmuss has moved to Hollywood and left the sleeze behind her".
- "England & Wales births: Abigail Evelyn Titmuss". FindMyPast. 15 March 2013. Retrieved 15 March 2013.
- Secret Diaries p.9
- "Abi Titmuss: If I could meet John Leslie in that bar again" Archived 26 July 2014 at the Wayback Machine., FreeNewsPos, 15 July 2013
- "Abi Titmuss sacked". London Evening Standard. London. 20 January 2004. Retrieved 8 August 2015.
- "My hell over shabby Abi orgy", Daily Mirror, 7 November 2004
- Robin Perrie (3 August 2007). "Abi sex vid man is a rapist". The Sun. Retrieved 8 May 2013.
- Secret Diaries
- "'I was labelled a monster and thought about killing myself': John Leslie opens up about how false rape claims ruined his life". Daily Mail. 6 January 2013. Retrieved 8 March 2013.
- "Celebrity Love Island Series 1", Sunday Express, 1 March 2007
- "Episode 14 - Celebrity Come Dine with Me - Abi Titmuss". Channel4. 1 February 2009. Retrieved 21 December 2010.
- "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
- "The full list of FHM's 100 Sexiest Women in the World 2007". Daily Mail. 26 April 2007. Retrieved 21 December 2010.
- Secret Diaries pp. 92, 96-97
- "Abi Titmuss on the latest stage in her colourful life", The Independent, 25 February 2006
- Fringe Report Awards 2007
- Frontman, IMDB
- Kendall, Paul (8 November 2009). "Abi Titmuss: Glamour girl to Lady Macbeth". Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 11 November 2009. Retrieved 7 December 2009.
- 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.
- "Abi: Women make good poker players", Metro online, 7 July 2008
- "Time for "poker player" Abi Titmuss to hold 'em", Daily Mirror, 24 July 2008
- "Abi Titmuss to Play in the European Ladies Championship", UK Poker News, 8 April 2008
- "Abi Titmuss bans mum from reading raunchy book", FemaleFirst, 11 July 2005
- "Abi Titmuss' life spiralled out of control after Lee Sharpe love split". Sunday Mirror. 13 July 2008. Archived from the original on 14 July 2008. Retrieved 13 July 2008.
- Secret Diaries p.8
- "Abi Titmuss: I felt my unborn baby move as I married Ari Welkom" - Evening Standard, 15 May 2017