How TOWIE stars went from humble childhood homes to mega mansions

The Only Way Is Up! How Mark Wright, Amy Childs and TOWIE’s biggest stars made us ‘well jel’ – and moved from their humble childhood homes… into ‘reem’ mega mansions

  • EXCLUSIVE: MailOnline looks at childhood and current houses of TOWIE stars
  • Some of the cast now live in areas like Surrey, while others still reside in Essex
  • READ MORE: How Mark Wright went from East London home to £3.5m mansion 

From a humble bungalow to a sprawling palatial mansion, these are the homes of TOWIE’s biggest stars.

The reality TV favourites have come from a variety of different backgrounds, the sons and daughters of boxers, car dealers, private surgeons, and foster carers.

Almost all of them grew up in Essex and most still live in the county where the ITVBe show is famously set, one even moving back in with his parents.

Others, meanwhile, have set up home in more far-flung places…. like Surrey.

Some of the properties are on tree-lined millionaires’ row while others are in multicultural neighbourhoods on the edge of London or nestled in stunning countryside.

With the 29th series approaching, MailOnline looks at the childhood and current homes of some of the show’s most famous cast members to see how TOWIE transformed their lives.

Amy Childs

TOWIE star Amy Childs was brought up in her family home in Essex (left) – but she now lives just 800 yards away (right) with her boyfriend Billy Delbosqwith whom she is expecting twins

Amy, 32, landed her own Channel 5 reality show It’s All About Amy after her time on TOWIE

Amy snapped up this beautiful property in Brentwood, Essex, which has 1,650 sq ft of space with four bedrooms and three bathrooms

But, Amy being Amy, her new home has to have enough space for her vast shoe collection 

TOWIE’s first breakout star who once claimed she could ‘get drunk on a wine gum’, ditzy Amy was a major reason why viewers first flocked to the show.

The red-haired beautician launched the ‘verjazzle’ into the public consciousness, never before did women know they could bling-up their private parts.

Amy, 32, still lived with her parents during her first stint on TOWIE, a sparkling modern detached house just off a main road in the town of Brentwood, where the series is largely set.

The £1.2million property boasts a large driveway, with room for at least four cars, and is still owned by her parents William and Julie.

Amy, who is expecting twins, lives with her boyfriend Billy Delbosq and two children, daughter Polly, five, and son Richie, four, from previous relationships, in a chalet-style home on the same road, roughly 400-metres away from the house where she grew up.

A smaller three-bedroom bungalow stood on the original site before it was demolished to make way for the new £1million home.

Amy’s time on the TOWIE only lasted two series, before she signed up for Celebrity Big Brother in 2011 – making the final eventually won by Paddy Doherty – and landing her own Channel 5 reality show It’s All About Amy, while also enjoying a stint in Channel 4’s The Jump in 2014.

She made an emotional return to the show where she made her name in 2020.

Sam Faiers

Like most of the cast, Sam grew up in Essex, but since finding fame she has moved into this £2.25m mansion (right) in leafy Cobham, Surrey, where she lives with partner Paul Knightley

Since leaving TOWIE in 2014, Sam (pictured with Paul) launched her own successful ITVBe reality series called The Baby Diaries, which was rebranded to The Mummy Diaries

Another TOWIE original, Sam’s time on the series will be remembered for her relationships with co-stars Mark Wright and Joey Essex.

The former topless model’s upbringing was blighted by her stepfather being jailed in 2002 after being caught with 140,000 ecstasy pills, 120kg of cannabis, two pistols and live ammunition.

Neighbours of her old family home, a detached Brentwood bungalow she shared with mum Suzanne Wells, sister Billie and Chatwood, can remember the property being raided, with one resistant telling MailOnline: ‘It was a shock, I’ve never seen so many police in my life. The whole street was full of them.

‘They cordoned off the road and massed outside the Faiers home. This wasn’t a dawn raid with the front door smashed in or anything like that. It was around midday and they just knocked.

‘Dave answered and the officers went in and searched the property. They were looking for drugs. He went to jail shortly after that.

‘They were a quiet family, who didn’t really associate much with the rest of us. I’d sometimes knock on the door but nobody would answer even though I knew someone was in. You’d struggle to get as much as a ‘good morning’ out of them.

‘I don’t think they were rude, just really quiet, very much kept themselves to themselves.

‘I would see Sam and Billie come out of a side gate on their way to and from school. Sam must have been about 12 when she lived there.

‘The family were only in the home for a few years and then moved on. A schoolteacher lives there now.’

Since leaving Towie in 2014, just after her appearance one of the most explosive ever series of Celebrity Big Brother – remembered for the love triangle between Blue singer Lee Ryan, US model Jasmine Waltz and British glamour girl Casey Batchelor – mum-of-three Sam, 32, launched her own successful ITVBe reality series called The Baby Diaries, which was late rebranded to The Mummy Diaries when sister Billie, 33, also a mother of three, came on board.

No longer based in Essex, Sam now resides in a £2.25million mansion in leafy Cobham, Surrey, where she lives with partner Paul Knightley, their newborn son and older children Paul, aged six and four-year-old Rosie.

Their celebrity neighbours include Loose Women star Frankie Bridge and singer Louise Redknapp.

Harry Derbidge

Harry recently moved back to his childhood home (left) after he vacated a swanky pad in a private apartment block (right), a Grade II-listed former asylum in the village of Warley

Harry was introduced to the series via his cousin Amy Childs, becoming TOWIE’s first openly gay cast member

The make-up artist has enjoyed various different spells on the series, but can still count himself as a ‘TOWIE Original’.

He was brought up in a three-bedroom semi-detached house in Brentwood with his parents, including his mum Karen, who still lives in the property – which has been on the market for 13 years.

And, for the moment being, Harry is also based there as he recently moved back in having just vacated a swanky pad in a private apartment block, a Grade II-listed former asylum in the village of Warley.

Karen told MailOnline: ‘Harry’s back with us at the moment while we sell the house.

‘He’s up to all sorts, keeping really busy and has a lot of projects on – but I’m afraid we can’t tell you about any of it as it’s top secret.

‘I know it’s almost 1pm but Harry is upstairs sleeping in his old room. He was out late last night and I don’t want to wake him.’

Harry, 28, was first introduced to the series via his cousin Amy Childs, becoming TOWIE’s first openly gay cast member.

In 2012 he launched unisex jewellery line called Love Lemonade with Amy, and has since boosted his bank balance by releasing an eyelash and eyeliner range via his cosmetics company, Beauty Brave.

Mark and Jess Wright

Mark and his sister Jess grew up in a four-bedroom home (left) in Ilford, East London. But he now lives in a £3.5m mega mansion (right) countryside village on the outskirts of Brentwood

Mark, 36, has recently moved into a luxurious home, which he designed with actress wife Michelle Keegan (pictured)

The garden of Mark’s new home – which looks like something out of a Hollywood movie – also includes a stunning pool, lying in the middle of a white stone terrace

The Wright family were at the heart of the peak years of TOWIE, namely brother and sister Mark and Jess.

They grew up in a four-bedroom home on the corner of a diverse and vibrant part of Ilford, East London, with car dealer dad Mark Wright Snr and mum Carol, who also starred in the ITVBe series, plus professional footballer brother Josh and youngest sister Natalya.

The pebble-dashed semi has a large wrap-around driveway and an outhouse at the bottom of the back garden.

A former neighbour remembered: ‘They were a nice family, quite noisy, but we got on well with them.

‘Mark and Jess were typical teenagers, they’d go out quite a lot and come home late at night.

‘One day they were in a bit of a panic because they’d locked themselves out. It seemed like the whole community came out to help them.

‘One of the neighbours lent them a ladder and I think it was Mark Jnr who climbed it to reach a top window, which he squeezed through and came down and opened the front door. They were all very relieved.

‘I think the parents moved away from here about 15-years or so ago – just before TOWIE aired on television.’

Summer ready! A stunning snap of the property shows a lavish outdoor area, complete with two cabana sun beds and multiple loungers (right) compared with his former garden (Left)

Mark recently gave fans a glimpse of the incredible kitchen inside the mansion (right), which was worlds away from his former home (left)

The TOWIE star and the actress moved into their stunning home in October last year and have been documenting their renovation

The couple even have lavish his and hers bathroom inside their sprawling mansion

Mark and Michelle’s Essex home features a modern bathtub with a giant gold tap

Mark photographed several sculpture pieces including two round urns, an intricate gold statue and a carving of a women’s figure.

Living it luxe: The reality star sprawled out on the lavish bed in his home with Michelle (right), compared with his Ilford house (left)

A sideboard held photographs of the couple on their wedding day in 2015, bookended by two cream lamps

Mark, 36, has recently moved into a mega mansion he designed with actress wife Michelle Keegan, 35, in Ongar, a countryside village on the outskirts of Brentwood.

The couple were given planning permission to demolish an existing £1.3 million farmhouse and construct a five-bedroom new build complete with a bar, make-up room, gym and outdoor swimming pool to the tune £3.5million.

Jess, meanwhile, now lives in a £1.4million ultra-modern terraced house in nearby Chigwell.

She recently gave birth to son Presley, her first child with husband William Lee-Kemp.

Jess, 37, left TOWIE in 2016 five years after Mark quit to concentrate on his own TV career, which has seen him appear on I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! and Strictly Come Dancing, bag a hosting stint on US show Extra, plus most recently fronting Paramount+ series The Challenge UK.

Jess Wright now lives in a £1.4million ultra-modern terraced house (right) in nearby Chigwell, after moving out of her parents home (left) nearly 15-years ago

In May 2022, Jess gave birth to her first child, a boy, called Presley, which is her first child with husband William Lee-Kemp

Lucy Mecklenburgh

Before hitting our screens, Lucy grew up in this beautiful, white-fronted Brentwood home with her two sisters, their father Paul, who was a surgeon, and their mother, Linda

Following her appearance on the show, Lucy has her childhood home, as she bought a bungalow (right) just two miles away that was at the centre of a planning row with neighbours

Lucy paid £525,000 for the pad in February 2015, and it is now believed to be worth £738,000, according to property website Rightmove. Pictured: The home’s kitchen after a renovation 

The fitness guru and ex-Coronation Street star husband Ryan Thomas spent £100,000 transforming their property in Essex, but were thwarted in their efforts to redevelop the home

As a young teenager, Lucy lived in a stunning white-fronted home in Brentwood with sisters Lydia and Christie as well her father Paul, who was a surgeon at a private hospital, and mother Linda.

The four-bedroom 1930s home is now worth £1.1million and is close to picturesque Warley Country Park.

Recalling the former TOWIE star growing up, a family friend told MailOnline: ‘Lucy was a very well-mannered, polite young lady and so were her two sisters.

‘She was probably in her early teens when she lived her. But the family have been gone for the best part of 20-years.

‘We used to socialise with her parents Paul and Linda and would go out quite a bit into Brentwood.

‘I’m glad Lucy’s gone on to have a successful TV career.’

Since finding fame on the show, mum-of-two Lucy, 31, has invested in property and now has properties in both Essex and in the north of England.

She bought a small but modern looking bungalow in 2015 for £525,000, which is located just two miles away from her childhood home.

Lucy has made some improvements to the property over the years and it is now now estimated to be worth around £750,000, according to property website Rightmove.

The bungalow was at the centre of a planning row two years ago after Lucy and fitness guru and former Coronation Street star husband Ryan Thomas, 38, had their plans for a first-floor front extension, hip-to-gable roof extension and new porch turned down.

A couple of neighbours objected to her proposals to further extend the property with two more bedrooms, a built-in wardrobe and bigger en-suite.

In a letter to the local council, one wrote: ‘I am totally opposed to this planning application. When I moved in seven years ago, it was a cul-de-sac of bungalows.

‘I have been living next to a building site for six-and-a-half years and the house next door is still boarded up and not finished.

‘We have had builders merchants’ lorries, skip lorries, concrete mixer lorries and many more. As a result, the road is now full of potholes.

‘There appears to have been no council oversight of the works to ensure completion in an acceptable timeframe to help minimise the impact to both the road and the community within it.

‘If this application is granted, we will once again suffer the inconvenience of more lorries coming up and down the road.’

Nowadays, the couple and their two children spend most of their time at their renovated Edwardian family home in Cheshire, where they plan to turn the basement into a utility room wine cellar, and cinema room, and possibly a gym.

Lucy charts her home improvement updates on Instagram. 

The star left TOWIE in 2013 and her time on the show will be remembered for her romances with co-stars Mark Wright and Mario Falcone.

She’s since gone on to launch her successful Results With Lucy fitness programme, which she later rebranded to Results Wellness Lifestyle.

Lucy also appeared on reality shows including BBC1 series Tumble, where celebrities competed against each other in gymnastics, and Tour De Celeb, a Channel 5 cycling-based series.

Lucy has found her niche in property development and home improvements and keeps fans updated with what’s going on in her house in Cheshire through Instagram stories (above)

Lucy likes to give her fans a glimpse inside her home – even her slightly messy wardrobe 

James ‘Arg’ Argent

James Argent’s former family home in Essex on the left, and his current home (right)

After stints in rehab, James appears to have turned his life around and is now sober and 14 stone lighter, after undergoing gastric sleeve surgery

The TOWIE stalwart is still one for the show’s most recognisable faces, five years after he was sacked due to drugs and alcohol issues.

The crooner’s family home is located on a tree-lined road in Woodford Green where houses are worth upwards of £1million.

His parents, Martin and Patricia, still live in the large villa-style home decorated with exterior shutters, a large bay window and built-in garage.

The area is popular with stockbrokers and city high-fliers and is just ten miles from central London.

In 2019, James splashed out £1.3million on a five-bedroom just around the corner, featuring a huge lounge-diner and spacious garden.

However, not long after moving in, his addictions spiralled out of control, sparking two suicide attempts inside the property.

Thankfully, after stints in rehab, James, 35, appears to have turned his life around and is now sober and 14 stone lighter, after undergoing gastric sleeve surgery.

His rehabilitation has sparked rumours of a potential TOWIE comeback, a show he still holds dear to his heart.

James, or ‘Arg’ as he’s most commonly known, was another ‘Original’ who joined the show as Mark Wright’s best pal.

But his failed romances with childhood sweetheart Lydia Bright and subsequent turbulent relationship with Gemma Collins were his most notable storylines.

James earns most of his income from touring with his Arg Band, singing crooner classics at corporate events, mostly in the UK and Spain.

Lydia Bright

Lydia Rose Bright was brought up in a lovely £1.8million home in Woodford Green (left) and only in February left this property (right) in Buckhurst Hill, Essex for her ‘forever home’ 

The location of her new home is unknown, but on February 18, she posted this picture on Instagram and wrote: ‘Nearly two years since I started the search, one failed house purchase, seven months bunking in at my parents and probably/maybe 50 viewings later… Our forever home fairytale can finally begin. I am so emotional right now. I am so proud of this moment and extremely grateful for every opportunity that I have been given in life that has led me to this day. I can not believe this is ours, a new chapter in our life together, happily ever after.’

Lydia posed for a snap outside her new four-bed property and posted it on Instagram

James ‘Arg’ Argent’s former girlfriend grew up in the affluent Woodford Green in an impressive mock-Tudor semi-detached home in a well-to-do street.

Her father David, originally from South London, worked in construction while mother Debbie initially worked in fashion for Debenhams but in 1993 became a carer and has fostered more than 200 youngsters over 30 years.

Former neighbours described them as a ‘lovely family’, which also came across on Towie, with Debbie providing words of wisdom to various castmembers who crossed her path.

At the start of this year, Lydia moved into her £1.5million ‘forever home’ in nearby Buckhurst Hill, not far from Arg’s house.

The end terrace three-storey house features a series of sash windows as well as an extension that boasts a skylight, as well as boasts bathrooms with freestanding baths, high ceilings, and a long driveway with a private gated entrance.

Lydia, 32, posed for a snap outside her new four-bedroom property and posted it onto her Instagram page.

She wrote: ‘Our forever home fairytale can finally begin. I am so emotional right now.

‘I am so proud of this moment and extremely grateful for every opportunity that I have been given in life that has led me to this day. I can not believe this is ours, a new chapter in our life together, happily ever after.’

Lydia is now a mum to three-year-old daughter Loretta who she shares with former partner Lee Cronin.

She quit TOWIE in 2017 shortly before releasing her first book, Live, Laugh, Love Always Lydia.

The former ITVBe star calls the property her ‘forever home’ after moving in with three-year-old daughter Loretta, following a two-year search for her dream abode

Lydia moved into the £1.5m four-bedroom Georgian house in Essex, which is a stone’s throw away from where her TOWIE ex-boyfriend James Argent lives

The former TOWIE star gave birth to her daughter in 2020 and has been involving Loretta in the house move, getting the tot to help build pieces of furniture

Lydia has shared an image of her guest bathroom on Instagram, saying the room needs few changes and she adores the copper bath, which overlooks the London skyline

Joey Essex

Living the reem! How Joey Essex went from a humble Chigwell house (left) to a £2.2m mansion (right) with an Ibiza-style pool after building an empire from his TOWIE fame

Success story: Joey is TOWIE’s most lovable star, famous for coining his own ‘Reem’ catchphrase and turning his lack of brain cells into his most valuable asset

The lovable star, known for his ‘Reem’ catchphrase, grew up in a semi-detached home with dad Don, a former boxer, mum Tina and older sister Frankie, who also appeared on TOWIE.

The family moved into the property, on a small close-knit road near the centre of Chigwell when Joey was aged around six.

Tragically four years later, Joey’s mum took her own life and he and his sister were brought up by their father.

Family friend and former neighbour Chris Johnson, 71, said: ‘I remember Joey. He was a lovely kid and was friends with my son. They were in the same class at Chigwell Primary.

‘He’d come over and play football in our garden. He was a real sweet-natured young lad, very humble, not full of himself at all.

‘We sort of lost contact with him because he and my son ended up going to different secondary schools and so drifted apart.

‘But fame and fortune haven’t changed Joey one bit. I still see him around locally and he’s always free to chat and asks after the family.’

Joey’s dad Don still owns the property, although as a staunch Millwall fan he won’t be happy that his tenant has positioned a West Ham gnome – sporting a claret and blue football strip – outside the front door.

Joey, meanwhile, has splashed out £1.4million on a gated-five bedroom home – equipped with an impressive kitchen diner which has bi-folding doors leading out to an Ibiza-style pool in the back garden.

The property – which is a five-minute walk from his childhood home – also has three dressing rooms and is now worth about £2.2million.

Joey, 32, recently finished runner-up in ITV series Dancing On Ice, the latest of numerous reality show appearances since he quit TOWIE in 2013.

He also made two Educating Joey Essex docuseries, as well as a moving one-off BBC special called Joey Essex: Grief and Me in 2021 about his mother’s suicide.

Chloe Sims

Chloe’s current home (right) looks very similar to her childhood home (left).  The family home is a large five bedroom detached property, valued at £900,000

The TOWIE veteran’s name is linked with a large detached house situated in a private gated cul-de-sac. However, she is currently in the US, and staying in a luxurious Californian mansion

Girls: In recent months, Chloe (right) has been filming her own Kardashians-style reality series with her sisters Demi (centre) and Frankie (left)

Joey’s cousin Chloe is one of TOWIE’s longest serving castmembers, starring in the reality series between 2011-2021.

Her family home is a large five bedroom detached property just off a busy road in Romford valued at £900,000, which she shared with sisters Demi and Frankie, and brother Charlie, who have all appeared on the ITVBe show.

Before moving to the US to work on her new reality show House of Sims, she lived in a house owned by the parents of Amy Childs in Essex.

However, her name is also linked with a large detached house situated in a private gated cul-de-sac, which has just two other homes.

That property – in the village of Doddinghurst close to Brentwood – is currently being redeveloped, potentially earmarked as a future UK base for Chloe once her US adventure comes to an end.

While she’s in the US, Chloe, 41, is staying in a luxurious Californian mansion, which includes an outdoor swimming pool and huge bedrooms, along with her sisters who will also feature in her new reality show, which is to be screened on OnlyFans.

They hope to become the UK version of the Kardashians.

The TOWIE veteran, who has a 17-year-old daughter called Madison, had notable relationships with co-star Elliott Wright – cousin of Mark and Jess – and Pete Wicks during her decade-long stint on the show

Kirk Norcross

Kirk grew up on a tough estate in Grays in a ground floor flat (left), but the devoted father now lives in a lovely home in Thetford (right)

The TOWIE star shares his five-year-old son Harry with Danielle Louise Carr, called Harry

The TOWIE original was a nightclub promoter of Brentwood nightspot Sugar Hut, which became synonymous with the reality series.

The club was owned by his father and co-star Mick who tragically took his own life in January 2021 aged just 57.

Kirk, who quit TOWIE in 2013 following two stints, grew up on a tough estate in Grays in a ground floor flat with his mum Julie and brother Daniel in the late 1990s.

Neighbours remembered a 10-year-old Kirk playing with friends – two brothers – who lived a few doors down.

He also spends many of his days playing in a local park close to the Thames.

The devoted father of two, 34, now leads a quiet life away from the glare of the TV cameras living in Thetford and running his company, KN Jet Services, a jet-washing and drain unblocking company.

His time on TOWIE was hugely memorable, particularly his relationships with Amy Childs and Lauren Pope, plus spats with Mark Wright.

Kirk was another cast member to also appear on Celebrity Big Brother, signing up for the 2012 series which was famous for Loose Women star Denise Welch jumping into a hottub topless with X Factor bad boy Frankie Cocozza.

He suffered from drugs and alcohol problems, which sparked his decision to turn his back on fame.

But he was back in the headlines following his dad’s passing, after it was revealed Kirk discovered his body inside the businessman’s gated home near Tilbury.

Kirk recently revealed his dream of returning to TOWIE to ‘make his dad proud’ and show viewers the real side of him, claiming he ‘didn’t know who he was’ during his time of the series.

Lauren Pope

While Lauren Pope lived in a bungalow (left) in Devon, she now lives in a £1.4million semi-detached house in East Finchley, North London (right)

 Lauren now focuses on motherhood and her Hair Rehab London cosmetics brand and millionaire boyfriend Tony Keterman, who is the father of her children

The model and DJ is one of the few TOWIE stars who did not grow up in Essex.

Her childhood home was instead a smart detached bungalow 200-miles west in Torquay, Devon.

The £400,000 property is located on a sloping street in the Shiphay area of the coastal town away from the harbour and beach and popular with families and older residents.

Lauren, 40, lived here as a teenager with mum, Susan French, in the mid-1990s to 2003.

Before joining TOWIE, Lauren had already made her name for herself in the modelling world but starring in the reality show significantly increased her profile.

She had romances with co-stars Kirk Norcross, Lewis Bloor and Tom Pearce, and a close friendship with Chloe Sims.

Lauren left the series in 2019, after nearly a decade, the year before she had the first child of her two young daughters.

She now lives in a £1.4million semi-detached house in East Finchley, North London, with millionaire boyfriend Tony Keterman, who is the father of her children.

The house – which has an attic extension – is located between the busy North Circular road and celebrity hotspot Hampstead Heath.

Lauren now focuses on motherhood and her Hair Rehab London cosmetics brand.

Source: Read Full Article