Open main menu

Debee Ashby (born Deborah Jane Ashby 2 July 1967 in Meriden, West Midlands) is an English former glamour model who appeared in British men's magazines and tabloid newspapers during the 1980s and 1990s. She was one of the best-known Page 3 girls of her era.[1]

Debee Ashby
Born
Debbie Ashby

(1967-07-02) 2 July 1967 (age 51)[citation needed]
Height5 ft 5 in (1.65 m)

Contents

Glamour careerEdit

Ashby's modelling career began when her mother, Anne Ashby, took her at age 16 to a glamour photography studio in Coventry.[1] In late 1983, she began appearing on Page 3 of The Sun, with one of her first appearances featuring her with her 38-year-old mother, both topless. The men's magazine Men Only featured her as its January 1984 cover girl and ran a pictorial of her stripping out of a school uniform.[2] As a consequence of these early appearances, Ashby was expelled from King Henry VIII School, Coventry, before she completed her O-levels. She went on to model for numerous other publications, including another appearance alongside her mother in the US magazine Cheri in June 1988, and also starred in a number of softcore videos. She retired from glamour modelling in 1996.[3]

Ashby subsequently expressed regret about her decision to enter into glamour modeling. In 2003, she appeared in the UK television documentary The Curse of Page 3 to discuss the negative aspects of her glamour modelling career.[4] In 2005, she stated "I was 16, naïve and in public school. I didn't think I was attractive enough to do Page 3, so I was flattered." But she noted that she suffered from bulimia for around seven years, that men frequently preyed sexually on young glamour models, and that she underwent therapy for four years.[5] Interviewed in 2015, she additionally questioned her mother's decision to introduce her to topless and nude modelling at such a young age, saying "I will never know why on earth she took me to that sort of place." She also supported the decision to remove topless Page 3 girls from The Sun, saying that if she had a daughter, she would not want her to become a glamour model.[1]

In 2018, aged 50, Ashby posed again in The Sun with other former Page 3 models to raise funds for a fellow former model's cancer treatment. This was her first glamour shoot in 20 years. She and the other models appeared without tops but covered their breasts with their hands.[6]

Personal lifeEdit

Ashby had a controversial and widely publicised relationship with American actor Tony Curtis when she was 17 and he was 59, during which she spent time at his Palm Springs home.[7] In an interview, she downplayed any sexual aspect of the relationship, saying that "He wanted company. It wasn't just my boobs... He said I had an interesting personality."[8] She was also linked romantically to Status Quo guitarist Rick Parfitt and gangster Reggie Kray.[3]

Ashby married session musician Richard Mead in 1992, but the marriage ended two years later. She moved to the Isle of Man in 1996,[3] where she married Dave Wookey in 1999.[9] The couple had a baby boy in 2000,[10] but they subsequently divorced. Ashby currently lives with her fiancé Johnny Mills, son, and stepson. Since retiring from modelling, she has been involved in managing pubs and restaurants, and in property development.[6]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b c Chilton, Steve (23 January 2015). "Red Button: Coventry 'stunner' Debee Ashby says Page Three should be consigned to dustbin of history". The Coventry Telegraph.
  2. ^ Men Only, Vol. 49, Issue 2 (February 1984)
  3. ^ a b c Lockley, Mike. "Page three stunner who said no to Reggie Kray". birminghammail. Retrieved 2016-04-01.
  4. ^ "The Curse of Page 3 (2003)". IMDb. Retrieved 2009-04-27.
  5. ^ Cochrane, Kira (15 November 2005). "Is this your idea of glamour?". The Guardian.
  6. ^ a b Windle, Lauren (18 March 2018). "Page 3 icons bravely dare to bare 20 years on to raise money for terminally ill modelling pal Belinda Gilfoyle".
  7. ^ "Why Tony Curtis loved Coventry". The Coventry Telegraph. 1 October 2010.
  8. ^ "Tony Curtis". Telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-04-01.
  9. ^ "Model bride Debee's joy and sorrow". The People. 4 July 1999.
  10. ^ "Debbie's all set to be a model mum; Couple's baby delight". Coventry Evening Telegraph. 2 November 2000.

External linksEdit