Category: News

Rachel Stevens discusses how she found the courage to be honest in new interview

Rachel has sat down with The Sun following the release of her autobiography “Finding My Voice“.

Exactly two years since her 13-year marriage ended, Rachel Stevens has entered Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin “dream divorce” territory.

On the day we meet, the S Club star and her ex-husband Alex Bourne – dad to her two daughters, Amelie, 13, and 10-year-old Minnie – are meeting up, accompanied by their respective partners, for their first double dinner date.

“Do you know what? I’m feeling good about it,” says Rachel, 46, who split from estate agent Alex – star of Netflix’s new reality show Buying London – in July 2022.

Only months earlier, she had met her current partner, US pro-skater Brendyn Hatfield when she was partnered with him on Dancing On Ice. Alex, too, now has a new partner.

“We’re going to talk about the kids, because parenting a teenager can be challenging and all parents need to set boundaries, and we just want to align on some things.

“Obviously, we’ve got two different homes, but we need to come together on certain things.

“[Alex and Brendyn] really get on. They’re both good people,” she says.

It’s an admirable and enviable display of sensible adulting, a set-up that mirrors the respect exhibited by Gwynnie and Coldplay star Chris after their 2014 “conscious uncoupling”. But Rachel admits it’s taken time to reach their happy place.

Rachel lays bare the truth about the unravelling of their marriage in her brand-new memoir Finding My Voice – specifically how her feelings grew for Brendyn, 38, soon after their DOI journey ended in February 2022.

She describes wanting “to get to know him” more, after being the third contestant voted off the show, and how they spent weeks communicating “constantly” over WhatsApp – “long, in-depth, emotional messages about what was happening in our lives and how we were dealing with our fractured relationships”, which resulted in them forming “an even deeper connection”.

In the book she writes: “All I knew was that I couldn’t help the feelings that were developing.

“There was no stopping it now. I’d never felt this way about anyone, and after all these years of searching, there was no way I was going to let it slip through my fingers.”

At the time, she and Alex were having marriage problems, but were still living together.

They went public with plans to split in July 2022 after a one-week trial separation.

Today, she admits: “It was messy, I’m not going to lie. I knew for a long time what I needed to do. I knew that we were growing… that I was growing apart, but I was in turmoil, because, first of all, my kids.

“I couldn’t think straight,” says Rachel, who insists she was honest with Alex, 47, about her feelings for Brendyn from the start.

“It was really scary, because I knew as soon as I said that, that was it – because with honesty comes change and [then] everything changed.”

But, look at them now. As divorces go, this one seems to be as good as it gets.

”I know how lucky I am,” nods Rachel.

“Of course, it’s a work in progress and we’re navigating it, but we’ve always had the goal of wanting to be age-appropriately honest with the girls.

“Kids think life is a fairy tale. I think it’s good to show them that this is real life and we’re all learning.”

Baring the story of her life in a memoir was no mean feat. Joining S Club 7 aged 19, Rachel became painfully conscious of how others perceived her and she suppressed her true self – a continuation of her childhood in north London, where she felt she had to be seen and not heard.

She struggled with committing to paper some of her innermost feelings, specifically about her marriage breakdown.

“I wanted to be really honest and open, and that was one of the things that scared me the most,” she says.

Insecurity, anxiety and imposter syndrome have been long-standing issues for Rachel, who’s “been in and out of therapy” since childhood.

When she was nine, her mum arranged counselling to try to resolve her anxiety, which manifested in emetophobia, an extreme fear of being sick (an issue she still struggles with).

These days, as well as regular dance training and walking to keep herself physically fit, Rachel has weekly therapy sessions and, clearly, self-development is working.

Walking through the door of our studio in a stunning Mint Velvet leopard-print two-piece, Rachel declines her publicist’s offer to sit in on today’s interview, before confidently handling most questions with ease.

She confirms: “I don’t feel like I have to be as protective any more. Even though I still have insecure moments or feel imposter syndrome, it’s getting less and less and it doesn’t last as long.”

One emotional struggle Rachel could never have anticipated came after she was violently mugged in June 2009, in her north London flat, by three men who followed her in, grabbed her by the throat and stole jewellery.

Fifteen years on, Rachel still lives with a fear of violent crime.

“I don’t always feel safe, like getting in cabs that I don’t know or when I’m walking on my own anywhere.

“Even if it’s light on the street, I sometimes feel very vulnerable, like someone could just jump out and grab me. I have feelings that something could happen in a split second. Something aggressive,” she explains.

Something else that rocked her to the core was last October’s terrorist attack in Israel, in which around 1,200 people were murdered – the worst loss of Jewish life in a single day since the Holocaust.

Raised within a Jewish family – although Rachel doesn’t observe all the faith’s traditions – she is proud of her identity and her daughters attend Jewish schools, where police have been on guard daily since the attack.

“As parents of Jewish kids at school, it was scary,” says Rachel, who was away on the S Club 25th-anniversary reunion tour when the atrocities began.

“Minnie was like: ‘Are you anywhere near Israel?’ She was worried about me and so emotional. When [the girls] went to school the next day, a lot of the kids were affected.

“They had family in Israel, people had lost loved ones. It was so frightening and the rise in anti-semitism is insane. It’s heartbreaking.”

Rachel uses the same word when talk turns to Paul Cattermole, her S Club bandmate who died last April at the age of 46 from an underlying heart condition, less than two months after the band’s 11-date reunion tour was announced.

“I couldn’t believe it. I was in shock. I was heartbroken,” Rachel says.

“I remember going to bed that night and I couldn’t get him out of my head. It was my birthday a couple of days later and it felt weird celebrating, so Brendyn and I left London.

“Being away, just me and him, was perfect because I could feel how I felt. Then the band shared memories and we were there for each other. It brought us closer together.”

Of course, that’s only partly true.

Following Paul’s death, fellow S Clubber Hannah Spearritt, 43, pulled out of the band’s reunion – their first since 2015 – before signing up to Dancing On Ice.

She later revealed in an interview that “everything changed” after losing Paul – her ex-partner – and she had struggled with panic attacks, stress and crippling vertigo.

During the tour, although the band paid tribute to Paul, Hannah’s name was conspicuously absent.

“We’ve evolved, we’ve moved on and you just have to respect people’s decisions,” says Rachel, adding that she’s had no contact with Hannah since she quit.

Formed by former Spice Girls manager Simon Fuller in 1998, during the band’s five years together they achieved 11 UK Top 10 singles, as well as global success.

Is she saddened by Hannah’s decision to pull out?

“I wish her really well whatever she does, from a human perspective, but I don’t feel sad about it,” says Rachel.

“She’s going through her stuff. Everyone has their individual journeys. I just hope she’s OK.”

Rachel is no stranger to rejection. She was 15 when her relationship with her father Michael, crumbled after he quit the family home following an affair with a younger woman.

Her mum Linda shut everyone out as she mourned the breakdown of her marriage.

But thanks to years of working on herself and learning not to carry the pain of her past, Rachel has patched up relationships with both parents.

Earlier this year, after totting up 21 points for speeding and receiving a driving ban, Rachel made the best of a bad situation by inviting Michael to become her temporary driver.

“It’s lovely,” smiles Rachel. “There is sadness [over the lost years], but I don’t carry the feelings I carried before. I’m more confident in who I am, so when I’m with my dad, I can feel compassion now.”

In the past, while chasing the love and connection she craved after her dad left, Rachel says she often clung on too long to unsuitable boyfriends, namely her former Holby City actor ex, Jeremy Edwards, with whom she describes having a “volatile” and “toxic” relationship. But those days are behind her.

“He’s a beautiful human and I really love him,” beams Rachel, when conversation returns to Brendyn.

Have they discussed getting hitched?

”I don’t know. Look at me getting all special. Oh my god!” she shrieks, becoming hilariously tongue-tied.

“Has there been marriage talk? There’s been… Not with me and him. We’re just… Erm… I’m going teenagery!”

Since moving into their new north London home just before the S Club tour, Rachel and Brendyn have been finding their way as a blended family. As well as Rachel’s girls, Brendyn – who was previously married – has a two-year-old son.

“Life is 100 million miles an hour and there’s so much you need to be on top of as a parent – the WhatsApp groups, making sure they’ve got this and that for school, that they’re doing their homework…

“Sometimes we can beat ourselves up when we’re not on top of everything, but I’m learning now to just give myself a break.”

The same applies to her career. Beyond ongoing S Club commitments with bandmates Jon Lee, Jo O’Meara, Bradley McIntosh and Tina Barrett, including some festivals, Rachel says she will only take on projects that feel true to her heart.

Last month, she performed at London’s Mighty Hoopla festival, and is looking to try new things.

“I’m really driven by building my business and working with fashion, lifestyle and wellness brands that I admire and align with,” she smiles. “Where I’m at in my life, [I just want to] create something that’s mine.”

You can pick up a copy of Rachel’s book ‘Finding My Voice’ everywhere books are sold.
You can pick up Rachel’s interview in ‘The Sun’ tomorrow 23 June 2024.

Rachel Stevens: ‘The S Club comeback came with mixed emotions’

S Club star Rachel Stevens looks back on her year, bringing the iconic pop band back, and how the finer details – and priorities – of her life have altered drastically in the last decade.

Rachel Stevens has had a bit of a bumper year – for a number of reasons. The main change for her is that S Club returned in a big way throughout 2023, playing some of their biggest venues in the process.

Included in this run of shows was a couple of gigs at London’s O2 Arena, where their comeback reached its apex, placing them in front of 20,000 people and relaying some of their biggest songs to date once again.

For one, Stevens has two grown-up children to contend with in her household now. And, as a result, she exclusively tells Express.co.uk over Zoom, she’s forced to think about some of the more mundane things in life – like… keeping her glasses safe. Yeah, this probably isn’t something you’d expect a BRIT Award-winning pop star to be worrying about, but it’s a very real problem she thinks about.

“Obviously, glasses in itself are expensive,” Stevens explained, getting real. “And we want to look after them.” As a result, the S Club Party singer has teamed up with Vision Express to help promote their hugely generous Breakage and Loss Protection Cover, which “replaces and repairs broken designer glasses with 75 percent off as well as offering 50 percent off the replacement of glasses that have been lost”.

“I just think it’s such a brilliant thing which will help so many people,” she grinned through the phone. “I mean, because they’re expensive, aren’t they? So any help, and that kind of thing, it’s such a great thing to be involved with.”

Stevens also confessed that having children changed her touring life, as well. “I think, for me, initially it was just logistics,” she explained. “Because the last time I obviously in the band, I didn’t have children and it was it was different. This time around. I think we were all kind of, you know, working out the diaries of kids in the mix and all of that kind of thing. And you know, the thought of leaving them for go on the road was daunting.” She added: “But so wonderful to be back together… We were all so excited.”

That wasn’t the only massive change to hit the band, though. On April 6, 2023, S Club member Paul Cattermole was found dead at his home. As a result, the band rebranded from S Club 7 to S Club, and carried out their following shows in tribute to him.

“That was a really special thing to be able to do,” Stevens sombrely said of the comeback. “It was a mix of emotions, really – a real mix of emotions. It does feel like we all – I think we all would say the same – we all just fit back together again. We’ve got so much history and all this sort of banter and fun and just doing it a different stage of our life.”

Stevens continued: “And also bringing that nostalgia for our fans and people who are all grown up now who were like five and six who would come up to us before the show and say you were our childhood. It was really special to hear their stories and share them with our own. Yeah, it was a mix of everything.”

Thankfully, it sounds like this isn’t the last we’ll see or hear of S Club in the near future.

Stevens revealed: “Yeah, no, we are looking to carry on. We’ve got some festivals coming up in the summer, which is really exciting.”

“We are potentially working on new music,” she added, without elaboration. “So lots of talk about that.”

Rachel Stevens has partnered with Vision Express to highlight the benefits of its Breakage and Loss Protection Cover. Vision Express will replace and repair broken designer glasses with 75 percent off as well as offering 50 percent off the replacement of glasses that have been lost. Book an appointment for an eye test here.

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S Club to headline Alderfest

S Club are planning their year and the first of hopefully many events has finally been announced.

Fresh off the heels of ‘The Good Times Tour’ (set to debut in North America next month) and Rachel’s performance at Mighty Hoopla, it has been announced that S Club will be bringing their S Club party to Shropshire on Saturday 06 July 2024.

You can find out about other headliners and how to get tickets on their website by clicking here.

S Club to perform at Jingle Bell Ball

It has been announced that S Club are scheduled to perform at Capital FM’s Jingle Bell Ball on 10 December 2023.

This will mark the bands first televised performance since the inception of their reunion earlier this year.

Details on the setlist are non-existent but we think they are sure to perform their beloved “Never Had A Dream Come True” which was released in 2000 as the Children In Need single.

Speaking of ‘Never Had A Dream Come True’ the song will be released on streaming on 17 November 2023 along with the long sought after “Spiritual Love” and “Stand By You”.

You can purchase tickets for Capital FM’s Jingle Bell Ball by clicking here.

Rachel Stevens announced for “Mighty Hoopla” 2024

Following the abrupt cancellation of her 2023 appearance at ‘Mighty Hoopla’ Rachel has made good on her promise to “make it up” as she has been announced to appear at the festival on Sunday, 02 June 2024.

Rachel will appear along side Jessie Ware, Rita Ora, Delta Goodrem, Louise, and The Veronicas (to name a few).

This event will follow the rescheduled US dates for “The Good Times Tour” which now take place in February of 2024. The band has hinted at “exciting plans” for next year, with a promise of new music, but with all of those exciting plans, it is nice to see that S Clubbers will still be focusing on solo endeavors (even if it is just a one-off).

The festival will take place at Brockwell Park in London and tickets are now available.

Listen Now: S Club Girls on “Frosted Tips with Lance Bass”

Worlds collide as Lance Bass (*NSYNC) features the S Club girls in his latest episode of his podcast Frosted Tips where the band reminisce on the early days of S Club and divulge information on the upcoming tour which is set to launch in Manchester on the 12th!

You can check out the Podcast at any of the distributors listed below!

Check out some items you may have missed!!

  • Purchase tickets to the “Good Times Tour”
  • Shop the S Club Shop (To include 12″ Vinyls)
  • Stream “Don’t Stop Movin'”
  • Stream “Don’t Stop Movin'”
  • Chat with S Club while re-watching “S Club Party Live” (10 October 2023 1:30 EST)
  • Watch Now: Rachel Stevens appears on Robin Elliott Tonight

    Earlier this month Rachel joined Robin Elliott Tonight to discuss everything from her recent Activia campaign, as well as the upcoming S Club “Good Times” Tour which is scheduled to start on 12 October 2023, in Manchester and continue through the UK through the end of the month, and launch their second leg in the United States in November.

    You can watch Rachel’s interview below (Rachel’s interview begins at the 23 minute, 20 second mark)

    You can purchase tickets for S Club’s tour at their official website!

    Rachel Stevens opens up on being famous in the noughties: “It was a very special time and it will never be like that again”

    Rachel Stevens shared that she has “grown and evolved” as she reflected on the height of her fame during her time in S Club and her relationship with actor Jeremy Edwards.

    Rachel Stevens was undoubtedly one of the biggest stars of the late 1990s and early 2000s thanks to her role as one-seventh of the BRIT-winning pop group, S Club 7.

    By 2002, the group had 10 UK Top 10 singles, four albums and their BBC sitcom Miami 7. Meanwhile, Rachel’s fame was also reaching new heights due to her well-publicised relationship with Jeremy Edwards.

    The 45-year-old was engaged to the Holby City actor from 2002 and they were the it-couple of their day, even predicted to be the next David and Victoria Beckham.

    Reflecting on that time, Rachel told Express.co.uk: “I don’t really remember that really, I’m not a massive fan of labels of any kind whatsoever.

    “I just think when you are in the moment of something, you’re just in it aren’t you and I feel like as you get older, you learn, you grow, you change, you evolve, and you realise things.

    “It’s hard to put it into words, there is so much change that goes on. So, it was a very amazing time to be in it and I definitely learned so much about myself since then.”

    Rachel and Jeremy confirmed they had parted ways in 2004 explaining that although the split was “sad” it was “the right” decision.

    The breakdown of their relationship was reportedly sparked by Jeremy’s struggle to cope with the tragic death of his Holby City co-star, Laura Sadler.

    He told Heat at the time: “It was a tough time for me…I was drinking a hell of a lot and got seriously depressed.

    The 45-year-old was engaged to the Holby City actor from 2002 and they were the it-couple of their day, even predicted to be the next David and Victoria Beckham.

    Reflecting on that time, Rachel told Express.co.uk: “I don’t really remember that really, I’m not a massive fan of labels of any kind whatsoever.

    “I just think when you are in the moment of something, you’re just in it aren’t you and I feel like as you get older, you learn, you grow, you change, you evolve, and you realise things.

    “It’s hard to put it into words, there is so much change that goes on. So, it was a very amazing time to be in it and I definitely learned so much about myself since then.”

    Rachel and Jeremy confirmed they had parted ways in 2004 explaining that although the split was “sad” it was “the right” decision.

    “It really shook me up. Losing such a close friend pushed me off the rails and sadly Rachel got caught up in my mess. It was at this point she confronted me about my problems and we agreed to have a break.”

    As Rachel, Jo O’Meara, Tina Barrett, Jon Lee and Bradley McIntosh get ready to go on their long-awaited S Club reunion tour, Rachel shared whether she is glad she experienced the height of her fame 20 years ago as opposed to now.

    She said: “I think it is all relative, I think you just get used to what you know and you adapt and go with what is going on at the time.

    “I do think it was incredible to be in pop music at that time, it was a very special time and it will never be like that again because everything is always moving and changing.

    “Everything was so fast it was like a whirlwind. We were quite unique to other bands because we had our TV show so when we were promoting a single or album, we’d be doing all the TV shows and the radio tours which was so huge then.

    “We’d then be off in LA, Miami, wherever we were in the world filming the series, so it was just constantly going, going, going. It was incredible but it was a whirlwind.”

    S Club will kick off their Good Times tour on October 12 in Manchester. They will then visit cities including Liverpool, Newcastle, Cardiff and London before taking the show to the United States in November.

    Hannah Spearritt pulled out of the tour in May following the death of her bandmate and former fiancé, Paul Cattermole.

    Source

    Rachel Stevens: “There are things that are bubbling for S Club next year”

    Rachel Stevens won “cool mum points” when S Club entered the Official Vinyl Single Charts at number one earlier this summer.

    The pop group had released their 2001 smash hit Don’t Stop Movin’ on vinyl for the first time in.

    “My daughters are so into music now and get the charts,” says Stevens, 45, who shares Amelie, 12, and Minnie, nine, with her ex-husband Alex Bourne.

    “They couldn’t believe it, and were blown away. I got serious cool mum points for about five minutes. So it was good, I’ll take that. They are gorgeous, and so excited for the tour,” the London-born singer adds.

    The band – formerly known as S Club 7 – will be heading on tour in October, reuniting to celebrate their 25th year with shows planned across the UK and Ireland. A couple of months after the Reunited Tour was announced however, bandmember Paul Cattermole died from natural causes in April, aged 46.

    S Club recently released their first new new single in 20 years – These Are The Days – paying tribute to their late bandmate.

    With the first tour date just weeks away, how is Stevens feeling about getting back on stage?

    “I am so excited. We just can’t wait to get back on stage again and have the best time with everyone, singing and dancing,” she says. “But I always get nervous when I care so much. I want to be the best I can be, and channel how I’m feeling in the best way.”

    Thank goodness her daughters have turned out to be S Club fans: “It’d be very awkward if they weren’t,” Stevens quips over the phone. “They are starting to see S Club for what it was and still is now. It stands for positivity, energy, kindness, and love, but I didn’t think about it in that way when I was 19, back in the early days.

    “Since having kids of my own and hearing the music again — the girls always want me to put it on in the car — it makes me a bit emotional, because the lyrics mean something different now that I’m a mum,” she continues.

    “That’s how I want my kids to feel, think, and believe in themselves. It’s a really lovely message to be putting out there, especially now more than ever, when there is so much music [to choose from]. Bringing it to a new audience and releasing new music is really special too.”

    There are a lot of dreams and goals the TV personality – who featured on hit shows including Strictly Come Dancing in 2008 and Celebrity MasterChef in 2017 – says she is aspiring to. She hasn’t sat down and done vision boards or anything like that, though.

    “I don’t know when I would have the time to do that right now,” she reflects. “It’s going to sound a bit cheesy, but I think the more we work on ourselves and get to know who we are, the more we can identify what we want, be grateful and push our intentions out there. That’s my way of manifesting.

    “There are things that are bubbling for S Club next year. We’re just so open to all the different opportunities and the new things that are evolving for us. But at this stage, I just want to get some proper quality time with my girls before the tour kicks off and get through rehearsals. I’m so excited to be dancing again.”

    S Club launch #ShareYourHearts with British Heart Foundation

    Earlier today, S Club, consisting of Jo O’Meara, Tina Barrett, Bradley McIntosh, Jon Lee, and of course our very own Rachel Stevens appeared on BBC Breakfast to launch the #ShareYourHearts campaign alongside the British Heart Foundation. Together, they are hoping to raise awareness and research funds for undiagnosed heart conditions, as their bandmate, Paul Cattermole tragically passed away in early April from a previously undiagnosed heart condition.

    S Club will help promote “Spotlight-On” in efforts to raise awareness for underlying heart conditions. These endeavors will include exclusive merchandise sold on the “Good Times” tour, where 100% of the proceeds will benefit the charity.

    If we can help save one life doing this we’ll have made a massive difference” says McIntosh, lead singer Jo O’Meara adds”…For us to be able to jump on board and be a part of this absolutely incredible campaign is so important

    The band has also launched the #showyourhearts campaign on social media, they are encouraging fans to pose as featured above, and upload the picture to social media using the tag #showyourhearts – the photographs will be later utilized during the “Good Times” tour which begins in Manchester on the 12th of next month.

    It’s been a busy few days, check out a news dump of all of the news from the past 48 hours!

    Purchase October Issue of “RetroPop” featuring S Club
    Watch S Club on BBC Breakfast
    Listen to S Club on BBC Radio
    Listen to “Natural” on Spotify / Listen to “Natural” on Apple Music

    Rachel Stevens Teams Up With Activia

    S Club beauty, Rachel Stevens, has announced her partnership with Yogurt company Activia.

    Stevens, has joined forces with the company to help raise awareness for Gut Health. The partnership was announced via Instagram earlier this morning

    Stevens also posted a short clip from the behind the scenes photoshoot, with more exciting things to come!

    Be sure to follow Rachel on Instagram @MsRachelStevens to get the most up to date news and information!

    Watch Now: S Club appear on “This Morning”

    S Club ended their week of promo for their new single “These Are The Days” today appearing on “This Morning“. In it the band discusses their upcoming tour, their brand new single to honor Paul Cattermole, and briefly mentions Hannah’s absence from the band (citing the validity of “anonymous sources”.)

    You can watch S Club’s appearance on “This Morning” below!

    There are no other announced promotional events at this time, though more can be announced at any moment.

    Listen Now: S Club interviewed on BBC Radio 2

    Earlier today, S Club appeared on the Chris Mills show on Radio 2 to promote their new single “These Are The Days”.

    The band will appear on “The One Show” this evening with some additional appearances next week!

    28 July 2023 – BBC – The One Show (7:00 PM)
    31 July 2023 – This Morning

    Listen Now: S Club Interviewed on Heart Breakfast

    S Club were interviewed on ‘Heart Breakfast’ this morning as they continue radio promotions for their new single “These Are The Days” (which has been holding steady at #2 on the iTunes chart since its release).

    S Club will continue promotion through the remainder of the weekend and into early next week:

    28 July 2023 – Scott Mills Radio Show on BBC Radio 2 (2:00 PM)
    28 July 2023 – BBC – The One Show (7:00 PM)
    31 July 2023 – This Morning