Joan Templeman Facts
Born On:- 1948-00-00
Her Age:- 73
Famous As:- Richard Branson's Wife
Place of Birth:- Glasgow
Born Country:- Scotland
Wife/Husband/Ex:- Richard Branson (m. 1989)
Children:- Clare Sarah Branson, Holly Branson, Sam Branson
Joan Templeman, also known as ‘Lady Branson,’ is the wife of British business mogul, investor, author, and philanthropist Sir Richard Branson (the owner of the Virgin Group, which controls over 400 companies). Born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland, ambitious young Joan did various jobs (including nude modeling) to manage her finances. She grew up with musician Ronnie/Ronald Leahy of ‘Nazareth’ group and later got married to him. After marriage they moved to London, where entrepreneur Richard Branson saw and fell in love with Joan. He left no stone unturned, but couldn’t win her over. Ultimately, Branson won her with his simplicity. Leaving her husband, she moved in with Branson, and the couple got married in 1989, after the birth of their two children. She maintains a low profile and supports her husband in all his endeavors.
Early Life & Marriage
Joan Templeman was born on July 6, 1948, in Glasgow, Scotland, to a shipping industry carpenter. She was one of the 7 children of her parents and was independent by nature. Her family was friends with musician Ronnie Leahy’s family.
Ronnie started his own band, ‘Stone the Crow,’ which soon gained popularity. Joan was his fan and supported his efforts. The two got married and moved to London. He continued his music journey with the band, ‘Nazareth,’ while Joan pursued various jobs.
Joan Templeman had a little clothing business in Kensington market in London. Simultaneously, she also did nude modeling. They were married for over 12 years when her life took a turn.
In 1976, Joan Templeman accompanied her then husband, Ronnie, for his album recording in Branson’s country house recording complex, ‘The Manor Studio.’ Branson met Joan for the first time in the kitchen of the studio, where she was making tea for herself. He fell for her in the first meeting.
At that time, Branson was going through a broken marriage, as his ex-wife Kristen Tomassi had left him for musician Kevin Ayers, allegedly after a wife-swapping session. Joan wasn’t interested in him initially, but he persuaded her relentlessly.
A week after their first meeting, Branson dropped in at the antiques shop near Portobello Road, where Joan worked. He purchased several things (which he didn’t actually needed), only to get noticed. He took her out to ‘Duveens,’ a nearby restaurant which he owned. He also invited her for dinners whenever Ronnie was away on music tours.
Branson acquired the nickname ‘Tag,’ or ‘Tagalong,’ because he regularly requested Joan’s friends whether he could tag along whenever they were meeting Joan Templeman. She was older to him and a poised lady, whereas he was known for his poor dress-sense, which she detested. He showered her with many gifts, but she wasn’t impressed with his wealth.
Branson wanted to take her away for a weekend, for which he contacted a travel-agent, posed as a customer interested in purchasing a Caribbean island. They organized everything, including a helicopter ride for both.
When Ronnie got aware of the situation, he personally met Branson, and asked him to stay away from his wife for the sake of their marriage. Branson promised that he wouldn’t contact Joan for 3 months.
In 1978, Ronnie and Joan Templeman went to Los Angeles where he had some music work with singer Donovan, but two weeks later Joan left him and called from New York (where Branson had reached to meet her, breaking his promise) to say that their marriage was over. Ronnie prefers to remain silent, as he feels that his silence speaks volumes.
Living-in With Branson And The Marriage
Joan moved in with Branson and together they lived (in his houseboat) in Little Venice, London. When she became pregnant in 1979, Branson wasn’t apparently happy, so she decided to go away, and give birth by herself. However, a complication of appendicitis in her 6th month led to premature birth of their first daughter, Clare Sarah, who died after 4 days. This tragedy brought the couple closer.
Their daughter, Holly, was born in 1982, followed by son, Sam, in 1985. Later, the couple got married on December 20, 1989, in an impressive wedding ceremony at Necker Island. Reportedly, their daughter, Holly, coaxed her father to propose and get married. Branson gave Joan a £2 million house in Holland Park as wedding gift. Later, the family bought homes in west London and Oxfordshire.
Life As Lady Branson
Branson gives the credit for his success and their successful married life to Joan. She maintains her cool through all his dare-devil endeavors and record-breaking attempts. She has been an understanding and tolerant wife, who acknowledges his two weaknesses – sticky pudding and pretty women. But she dismisses his flirting as ‘typical Richard.’
When Joan’s nude pictures surfaced years later, far from getting annoyed, Branson asked for a set of the same for himself.
Branson continues to surprise her with unexpected gestures. He once boarded a flight in Majorca for business trip, leaving Joan at the airport. But then stopped the taxiing plane, and got off to meet her.
Quiet by nature, Joan Templeman enjoys reading, and spending time with grandchildren – daughter Holly’s twins, Etta and Artie, and Sam’s daughter Eva-Deia.