April Ashley - Updated Apr 2024

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Liverpool, England
Birth Sign

Liverpool, England

April Ashley


April Ashley was a transgender history’s leading model, socialite, and pioneer. She gained fame in the 1960s for her press-outing, her landmark divorce case, and her advocacy for transgender equality.

Early Life and Education

April Ashley was born on April 29, 1935, in Liverpool, England, as George Jamieson. Assigned male at birth, she realized her gender identity at a young age and underwent gender confirmation surgery in 1960, becoming one of the first British people to undergo such a procedure.

Information about her early education is limited, but she grew up in Liverpool and navigated challenges related to her gender identity from a young age. She grew up in Liverpool in a working-class family. Details about her parents and siblings are not widely available in public sources.

Career and Professional Life

April Ashley’s career and professional life were characterized by her groundbreaking contributions to the modelling industry and her fearless advocacy for transgender rights.

After undergoing gender confirmation surgery in 1960, Ashley emerged as one of the first openly transgender individuals in the public eye, challenging societal norms and paving the way for greater visibility and acceptance of transgender individuals in mainstream media.

As a model, April Ashley achieved remarkable success, gracing the covers of prestigious magazines such as Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar. Her striking beauty, poise, and confidence captivated audiences and challenged traditional notions of gender in the fashion world.

Despite facing discrimination and prejudice, Ashley’s trailblazing presence shattered barriers and inspired countless individuals within the LGBTQ+ community and beyond.

April Ashley

April Ashley during her song and dance act at the Astor Club, London, 1962, source: IMAGO- Images

In addition to her modelling career, April Ashley pursued acting, appearing in films like “The Road to Hong Kong” (1962). While her acting career may not have reached the same heights as her modelling career, her film roles further cemented her status as a pioneering figure in the entertainment industry.

Beyond her professional endeavours, April Ashley’s advocacy for transgender rights was a defining aspect of her career. She fearlessly spoke out about her experiences as a transgender woman, advocating for greater visibility, acceptance, and equality for transgender individuals. Her courage in living authentically and her unwavering commitment to advocacy left a lasting legacy, inspiring future generations to embrace their true selves and fight for social justice.

April Ashley’s career and professional achievements represent a triumph of resilience, courage, and authenticity in the face of adversity. Her groundbreaking contributions continue to resonate within the LGBTQ+ community and serve as a beacon of hope and inspiration for all those who dare to defy societal expectations and embrace their true identity.

Awards and Nominations

In the 2012 Queen’s Birthday Honours List, April Ashley was appointed as a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in recognition of her contributions to Transgender Equality.

April Ashley’s contributions to the LGBTQ+ community and her trailblazing efforts in the modelling and entertainment industry have earned her recognition, but specific awards and nominations may not be extensively documented.

April Ashley

April Ashley during an Investiture ceremony at Buckingham Palace on December 13, 2012 in London, England, source: Daily Mail

Personal Life

Throughout her life, April Ashley engaged in relationships with various partners. However, extensive documentation of her romantic partners may not exist. She married twice, initially to Arthur Corbett in 1963.

However, legal challenges surrounding her gender identity led to the annulment of this marriage. Despite the challenges she faced, April Ashley’s resilience and advocacy efforts inspired many within the LGBTQ+ community and beyond.

April Ashley

April Ashley in a swimming pool with her boyfriend Arthur Corbett, source: Pinterest

Later Life and Death

Following a heart attack in London, April Ashley retired for a period to the Welsh border town of Hay-on-Wye. In her book “April Ashley’s Odyssey,” she mentioned that Amanda Lear was assigned male at birth and that they had worked together at Le Carousel, where Lear used the drag name Peki d’Oslo. Although Ashley and Lear were once close friends, according to Ashley’s book “The First Lady,” they had a significant falling out and had not communicated for years.

In the 1980s, Ashley married Jeffrey West on the cruise ship RMS Queen Mary in Long Beach, California. They later divorced but remained on amicable terms. In the 1990s, Ashley worked for Greenpeace and later at an art gallery. She shared her life story at St George’s Hall in Liverpool as part of the city’s Homotopia Festival in November 2008 and at the Southbank Centre in February 2009.

April Ashley resided in Fulham, southwest London, in her later years. She passed away at home on December 27, 2021, at the age of 86.

Body Measurements

As of available information, specific details about April Ashley’s body measurements are not readily available in public sources.

Net Worth 2024

As of 2023, April Ashley’s net worth is not publicly available or widely reported. Net worth figures for individuals in the entertainment industry can vary. This variability depends on factors such as career earnings, investments, and other financial endeavours.

April Ashley is not present on social media.