SHE was one of the biggest glamor models in the UK, known for drunkenly walking out of clubs, wearing next to nothing and partying most nights of the week.
But life couldn’t be more different for Jodie Marsh now, after she shunned the limelight to run an animal shelter – Fripps Farm in Chelmsford, Essex.
Since opening in 2020, the farm has grown rapidly and the 44-year-old now looks after around 350 animals, including meerkats, sheep, emus, birds, rabbits and even a baby deer.
Wearing a baggy T-shirt, pants and muddy wellies, she jokes, “You might recognize me as someone who used to be glamorous, sexy, a bodybuilder and everything else, but now I’m just a farm girl and I look like a… off.” Mess.”
For her first full-length interview in seven years, Jodie sits us down at her former gym, where the walls are covered with posters of Jodie’s favorite photo shoots from the past few years, many of which are topless.
But their gym equipment is buried in the hay, and as we talk, a deer and a lamb trot in and out.
Jodie says she doesn’t get to bed until 2am most nights — not because she’s outside, but because she’s taking care of her animals. Then she gets up again at dawn to feed them.
She tells us, “The reason I’m fat now and don’t have a six pack is because I don’t have time to eat properly or even shop for groceries. Never.
“I used to cook healthy meals and I don’t have time for that anymore.
“I’m not going to the gym at the moment either. I have no time. It’s manic.”
‘Life is too short’
It was Jodie’s mother, Kristina, who was diagnosed with terminal cancer that was the driving force for Jodie to break into the world of show business and fulfill her dream of running an animal shelter.
She explains: “I’ve said my whole life that when I retire I’m going to have an animal shelter.
“I’ve always thought about when the time is right, when I’ll retire and when I’ll have enough money.
“But then my mother got sick and I realized life is so short. Why don’t I do what I want to do now?
“So I just thought, ‘Fuck it, I’ll do it.’ And I started and it snowed and now here we are at 350 animals.”
The reason I’m fat now and don’t have a six pack is because I don’t have time to eat right or to shop for groceries. Never
Unfortunately, Kristina passed away in September 2020, just months after Jodie opened the sanctuary, so she never got the chance to see it grow.
But Jodie, who reveals her mum was the mastermind behind her infamous rhinestone belt outfit, says: “My mum was my best friend. She would be proud. 100 percent.
“She loved animals herself and was proud that I am so passionate and fight for what I believe in.
“Now that I’m doing what I should always be doing, I know she would be so happy for me. I just hope she looks down and can see everything.”
It’s clear that Jodie is in her element as she shows us around the farm and introduces us to her many animals.
When she opens the gate, the horny emu Pam gives her a try.
It’s terrifying to watch, but Jodie casually admits it happens “every month for two weeks.”
Loud, munching turkeys run towards us, including one named Damon, and Jodie tells us it’s their way of chatting.
“That’s Damon showing off to you and saying, ‘How pretty am I?'” she adds.
My mother got sick and I realized that life is so short. Why don’t I do what I want to do now?
In the pen next door there are sheep, more like giant dogs, who lick Jodie’s hand and snuggle up to us for a cuddle.
“That’s Klaus,” says Jodie, pointing to a particularly woolly one. “I saved him and his brother from slaughter when he was a baby and bottle fed him so he thinks I’m his mother.”
Jodie has six sheep on the farm and has been taking care of all of them since she was a child.
“They all still think I’m their mother,” she says. “They are very affectionate and loving, they know they are safe here. They know they are loved and cared for, so they all come straight to you. They think you’re a friend, they’re just happy.”
There are also three lambs recently rescued from a slaughterhouse and a young muntjac deer rescued after falling into a swimming pool.
The deer has yet to be named – we recommend Bambi.
Jodie was devastated when Fripps Farm was recently raided by the RSPCA after she took her meerkat Mabel to the pub.
Jodie claims it’s from a troll who’s after her.
Recalling the incident, she says: “They looked at the center and asked about the meerkat incident.
“I explained to her that she was an orphan, that I was raising her and that she needed to be fed regularly every hour.
“I went to my local place for a moment and took her with me because she cried when I left her.
“Nobody raised a fuss or complained. Everyone is very supportive, but I have a troll who’s out to cause trouble.”
Jodie also slammed officers for investigating claims that an emu had a tube stuck in its throat – explaining it was a life-saving feeding tube.
Jodie was right after the RSPCA spoke to a veterinarian who visits the farm every two weeks to check on the animals and was satisfied that there was no neglect or abuse at Fripps Farm.
We were introduced to both Mabel and the emu and it was clear that they are both very happy.
Funding from OnlyFans
Jodie is now looking forward to the future as she is about to move to a new, larger farm 20 minutes from the current location in Chelmsford.
She says: “We will have more help with the animals and the situation will be much better.”
“There is so much more land, which means I can give all the animals more space and save more animals in the future.”
Jodie needs to raise £100,000 to finish building all the new enclosures.
Currently, most of the funding for the farm comes from OnlyFans – which sometimes sees Jodie completely nude – but she says the money is “going out as fast as it comes in”.
She says: “We get a lot of money from OnlyFans, but every penny of it goes to Fripps.”
“Our vet bills are probably £10,000 a month at the moment and vet bills aside, it costs four thousand a week to run this place!”
Still, Jodie says she’s happier than ever.
She concludes by saying, “I can’t describe the joy I feel every day of my life, the satisfaction, the sense of contentment of just knowing I’m doing something good.”
“I’m doing what I should have always done, 100 percent.”
She tearfully added: “The only sadness in my life is that my mother is not here to see it. this is killing me
“But she would be really proud.”