Spice Girls' Mel B forced to move in with her mum after bitter divorce left her homeless

13 March 2024, 10:03

Spice Girl Mel B has revealed she had to move into her mother's home after the breakdown of her marriage
Spice Girl Mel B has revealed she had to move into her mother's home after the breakdown of her marriage. Picture: alamy

By StephenRigley

Spice Girl Mel B was forced to move back into mum Andrea's bungalow after her bitter divorce left her homeless.

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Mel, 48, revealed how she had to take her three children back to her mum's home after the breakdown of her marriage.

The singer born Melanie Brown left California after splitting from ex-husband Stephen Belafonte, accusing him of domestic abuse. Belafonte has always denied the allegations.

Mel said she was left in a “powerless” situation” after her divorce was finalised, and that the decision to move home came as the Spice Girls reunion was taking place in 2019.

Proceeds from the shows were apparently being spent on legal fees and payments to Belafonte along with a lump sum of £274,000 and £3,900 a month in child support for their daughter, Madison.

Spice Girls in 1997 with Mel B (bottom r)
Spice Girls in 1997 with Mel B (bottom r). Picture: alamy

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'Scary Spice' said she has now made her way back to a level of financial security after a successful Spice Girls renuion and the publication of her autobiography Brutally Honest.

She said: "I wasn't just emotionally and physically abused, there was all the financial abuse too. I didn't realise that I didn't have as much money as I thought I had. So I literally had to eat humble pie, live with my mum."

She told the BBC: “My mum was the kind of person that would say, 'Oh you've left him now, you're fine'. But that couldn't be further from the truth.

“Obviously any situation is better than being with your abuser, but when you've left that kind of abusive situation, it's like starting all over again. You have to learn to trust people. You have to learn to trust yourself.”

She was already coming off a relationship with actor Eddie Murphy, the man she describes as “the love of my life”.

Melanie, split from American film producer Stephen in 2017 after 10 years and moved back to her hometown of Leeds from LA, now campaigns for domestic abuse groups.

She received an MBE in 2022 for services to charitable causes and vulnerable women and became a patron of Women’s Aid, the national charity working to end domestic abuse against women and children in 2018.

She has now bought her own place and says being back in Leeds has "definitely" helped her find her feet.

The singer, known as “Scary Spice” during her time with the Nineties girl group, opened up about her work as an anti-domestic abuse campaigner during a panel held in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the charity Women's Aid.

She said: “Before, it was like ‘all right Scary’, now I get women coming up to me literally in tears telling me their story when I’m in Aldi or Sainsbury’s,” Brown said of the reaction to her work as a campaigner.”Now, it’s more of a conversation. It’s not really the conversation that you want to be having but I’m so glad that I’m experiencing that and I can talk about it.”

Mel recently spoke about how she and her former bandmates are rallying around "Ginger Spice", Geri Halliwell, amid the F1 scandal surrounding her husband, Christian Horner.

She said: "Yeah that’s the thing when you’re going through something like that you really do need your friends and family. And we’re all very supportive and I feel really sad about it right now."

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