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Ten Things You Never Knew About Geri Halliwell

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Ten Things You Never Knew About Geri Halliwell
After she quit the Spice Girls in May 1998, Geri Halliwell barely left us alone for a second. The artist formerly known as Ginger kept herself busy as a UN ambassador, a Popstars - The Rivals panellist, a budding children's author, an occasional actress and a successful solo star with four – yes, really! – number one singles to her name. But what lurks behind the wealth of self-improvement bobbins she's so fond of spouting? With the Spice Girls' Greatest Hits about to land on the nation's CD racks, we unveil ten fascinating facts about the woman who invented girl power.

1. Geri was raised as a Jehovah's witness.

2. Geri is half Spanish, a quarter Swedish and a quarter English.

3. Before she won her place in the Spice Girls, Geri worked as a model, a nightclub dancer and a TV presenter on a Turkish game show.

4. Geri auditioned for a part in the 1995 movie adaptation of Tank Girl.

5. How does Geri rationalise her ongoing battle with bulimia? "It's not really about food or the body shape," she says. "It's just a way of dealing or coping with life."

6. Geri's great-grandfather was the mayor of Cordoba, a city in southern Spain with a population of 300,000. Hmm. That's all very impressive, did he ever pinch a Prince’s bottom?

7. Geri made her iconic Union Jack dress with her sister Karen.

8. Geri has no plans to revive her solo career. "As far as music is concerned, I feel like I've given it my best," she says. "When I see how desperate people are for that chance, I realise I've had my turn, and now I have to let it go." Many of you, we suspect, are currently breathing a huge sigh of relief.

9. Geri used to have two tattoos - one of a panther on her lower back, another of a star in between her shoulder blades – but she recently had them removed by laser.

10. How did Geri come up with her daughter's unusual name? "What really clinched [it] was my mother telling me that the bluebell is increasingly rare - so it's a precious flower, which seems just right for my daughter," she recalls. "There's a good reason I picked Madonna as a middle name, too. As she came out of my tummy, Bluebell had both arms flung wide in the air as if announcing to the world: 'Hi, I'm here!' She was screaming her head off, as though shouting: 'Hello, Wembley Stadium!'" It takes all sorts, doesn't it?

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