I’m A Celeb stars’ real names revealed – from what AJ stands for to what Shane and Ruthie are actually called


I’M A Celebrity has seen plenty of changes this year after being hauled over from Australia to a crumbling Welsh castle.

But change is nothing new for the class of 2020 – with many of them having ‘rebranded’ themselves or even come up with new names over the years.

Some of I’m A Celeb’s stars are hiding names you would never have guessed

Here, we reveal what the stars were called when they were born – from what AJ stands for to how Shane Richie and Ruthie Henshall were known before showbiz came calling.

The Strictly star swapped his real name ‘Alex Joseph’ for the edgier ‘AJ’

AJ Pritchard

As a hot young dancer, AJ needed a hot young name – and we can only assume ‘Alex Joseph’ wasn’t going to cut it.

That’s what the 26-year-old was called before he adopted the far more showbizzy ‘AJ’.

By the time he auditioned on Britain’s Got Talent aged 18 – his first but far from last encounter with Ant and Dec – he’d ditched plain old ‘Alex’.

A stint as a Strictly pro soon followed for the lad, who even has an tattoo of his famous initials on his arm. Now that really is branding.

He made the change before appearing on Britain’s Got Talent in 2013

Eagle-eyed I’m A Celeb fans will have spotted he has ‘AJ’ tattooed on his arm

Shane Richie

Showbiz Shane has been in the entertainment biz longer than most people can remember.

But he was called Shane Roche when he was born – before embarking on a variety of increasingly bizarre stage names, including at one time Shane Skywalker.

The 56-year-old explained that he was welcomed onto the stage when he was performing as a Neil Diamond tribute act by a bloke who mispronounced ‘Roche’.

Shane said: “I was rebelling against my dad as well so I stuck with Richie – it confused the hell out of the taxman as well!”

The former EastEnders star was born Shane Roche – but changed it for showbiz

The ‘Ritchie’ name was accidentally invented by a bungling compere

Ruthie Henshall

I’m A Celeb’s premier musical star (sorry Shane) might be known as Ruthie – but she was born ‘Valentine’.

The 53-year-old made her West End debut in Cats back in 1986 using her stage name – and even went on to star in Valentine’s Day.

However, the ‘Ruth’ didn’t just come out of nowhere – it’s her middle name.

What Prince Edward – who she excitedly told the campmates she had dated, called her has not been recorded.

Ruthie Henshall was born with the romantic first name ‘Valentine’

The star, seen here in 1990, got the new name before her stage career took off

Beverley Callard

Corrie star Bev has been known by many names – not least of them ‘Liz McDonald’.

She started life as Beverley Moxon, becoming Atkinson in her first marriage, Sowden in her second and Callard in her third.

But the story didn’t end there, with 63-year-old Bev going on to marry fourth husband Jon McEwan in 2010.

However, this time Bev – perhaps bored of getting new passports – didn’t change it in public and the Callard name stuck.

Actress Beverley has had many names – but she started life as a Moxon

Beverley rose to fame on Corrie as a Callard – but it’s no longer her name


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