Entertainment

Mel B made MBE for domestic violence campaigning


Mel B, whose full name is Melanie Brown, has been made an MBE for her tireless campaigning to stop domestic violence and to help victims of abuse.

It was previously reported that the former Spice Girls singer would be named in the Queen’s New Year Honours list before Christmas, wth the official list now being released.

The 46 year old mum-of-three is being recognised for her services to charitable causes and vulnerable women.

Amongst her other work, Mel filmed a poignant short film earlier this year that depicted one woman’s escape from her abusive husband through a beautiful yet haunting dance for Women’s Aid.

The video was choreographed by The Greatest Showman’s Ashley Wallen and was set to an instrumental track from composer Fabio D’Andrea.



VENICE, ITALY - AUGUST 28: Melanie Brown walks the red carpet ahead of the opening ceremony during the 76th Venice Film Festival at Sala Casino on August 28, 2019 in Venice, Italy. (photo by Rocco Spaziani/Archivio Rocco Spaziani/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)
Mel B is being named in the Queen’s New Year Honours list



Earlier this year, Mel played the role of a woman beaten badly for a devastating video for Women's Aid
Earlier this year, Mel played the role of a woman beaten badly for a devastating video for Women’s Aid

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In the film, Mel can be seen portraying the horror of a wife repeatedly mentally and physically abused by her husband.

The trauma is brought together through the work of contemporary dance and Mel eventually gets free, as she’s seen running away from her abuser at the end.

The powerful video was praised by fans and critics alike, as the Leeds-born star continues to focus on helping women and victims of domestic abuse.

Mel said at the time that she was inspired by some of the women’s stories she’d heard as a proud patron of the charity.

The TV personality has also used her position within politics as she delivered a report on domestic abuse to the government at 10 Downing Street in 2019.



UNIVERSAL CITY, CALIFORNIA - DECEMBER 04: Mel B visits "Extra" at Universal Studios Hollywood on December 04, 2018 in Universal City, California. (Photo by Noel Vasquez/Getty Images)
Mel B was praised for her work in the short film for Women’s Aid

Mel has also come forward and spoken bravely about her own experiences with domestic abuse, claiming her ex-husband and film producer Stephen Belafonte physically and mentally abused her.

The star split from Belafonte in 2017 after nearly a decade and then applied for restraining orders against him and their former nanny Lorraine Gilles, also filing for divorce from her ex-husband.

The star claimed Belafonte subjected her to years of mental torment and physical abuse, and Gilles had conspired with him to threaten to release explicit videos of her.

A domestic violence trial was set to go ahead but it was halted in November that year after the singer settled with her estranged ex-husband and their former nanny.

Judge Mark Juhas told the court at the time that the case was resolved and the temporary restraining orders had been dissolved.



GREENHITHE, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 28: Mel B meets fans and signs copies of her new memoir "Brutally Honest" at Waterstones Bluewater on November 28, 2018 in Greenhithe, England. (Photo by Mark Milan/Getty Images)
Mel B released her autobiography Brutally Honest in 2018

The former couple, who share 10 year old daughter Madison, reached a settlement for their divorce in court in 2018.

Mel then released her autobiography Brutally Honest later that year, in which she made further claims against Belafonte about the mental and physical abuse she suffered by him.

The producer has repeatedly denied all of Mel’s allegations.

Gilles also denied all claims made against her, and filed a defamation lawsuit against Mel in April 2019 after she called her former nanny a “prostitute” and “homewrecker” two years earlier. The former Spice Girl paid out $1.8million to settle with Gilles.

Mel, who will be joining the likes of Good Morning Britain star Kate Garraway and Diversity dancer Ashley Banjo in the prestigious list, is receiving the award because of her “passionate” campaigning for the cause, according to a source at The Sun.

Along with a string of new MBEs, Absolutely Fabulous actress Joanna Lumley, British star Vanessa Redgrave and EastEnders icon June Brown will all be given Damehoods via the Order of the British Empire.

If you or someone you know has been affected by issues raised in this article you can contact Women’s Aid or call The Freephone 24 hour National Domestic Violence Helpline, run by Refuge on 0808 2000 247.

If you or someone you know has been affected by issues raised in this article you can contact Women’s Aid or call The Freephone 24 hour National Domestic Violence Helpline, run by Refuge on 0808 2000 247.

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