Denise Van Outen’s new boyfriend Jimmy Barba’s many brushes with fame
Denise Van Outen’s new boyfriend Jimmy Barba was once an Italian reality star who sent flirty messages to Cheryl and Laura Woods, MailOnline can reveal.
The singer, 48, went public this week with new husband Jimmy, 55, as they attended the Grand Prix Ball – five months after she split from cheating ex Eddie Boxshall.
Denise has had a long life in the spotlight, starring in several shows and demonstrating her West End vocal talents, and it has now been revealed that her new partner has forged a similar career path.
Brushes of fame: Denise Van Outen’s new boyfriend Jimmy Barba was once an Italian reality star (pictured right on Big Brother Italy) who sent flirty messages to Cheryl and Laura Woods, MailOnline can reveal
In 2010, Jimmy became a household name in Italy after starring in the 11th series of Big Brother (Grande Fratello), where he finished in fourth place.
While he may not have won the series and bagged the top prize of €300,000, he kept audiences entertained during his stint by having romances with two of his roommates, Rosa Baiano and Margherita Zanatta.
What followed was a short-lived pop career, with Jimmy releasing three singles between 2012 and 2013 – though they failed to light the charts.
More recently, Jimmy — who described his career as a dancer and farmer when he appeared on Grande Fratello — has shunned the world of showbiz to become a property developer.
Cute couple: The 48-year-old singer went public this week with her new husband Jimmy, 55, as they attended the grand prix prom – five months after she split from her cheating ex Eddie Boxshall
However, the British-Italian star revealed that he still has an interest in celebrity culture when he struck up a conversation with Sky Sports singer Cheryl and Laura Woods.
In 2019, Jimmy quickly offered himself as a romantic prospect for Cheryl, 34, who tweeted, “Will you be my Valentine?!” Jimmy is asked to quickly answer ‘Yes’.
In December 2021, Jimmy was quick to call Laura “Beautiful” with a kissing emoji after she shared a photo showing off one of her outfits.
Jimmy is said to have dated Denise for a few weeks after he was introduced by All Saints star Shaznay Lewis, with an insider telling MailOnline that they were “on a few dates.”
“It’s still early days but everything is going very well and Denise is happy,” the source revealed.
Singing sensation: Jimmy became a household name in Italy in 2010 after starring in the 11th series of Big Brother. What followed was a short-lived pop career, with Jimmy releasing three singles between 2012 and 2013.
Sources told MailOnline that the couple had been dating for a few weeks after being introduced to each other by a mutual friend.
The entrepreneur owns Whiteditch Lane Development LTD and, based on photos added to his Twitter account, turns out to be a father of a young daughter.
Denise is mother to 10-year-old Betsy who she shares with ex-partner Lee Mead and although she has appeared in many West End shows, Jimmy is also a singer.
Denise officially took to Instagram with Jimmy on Thursday morning, sharing photos of the two cuddling at the event and dining with friends.
Cheeky! In 2019, Jimmy quickly offered himself as a romantic prospect for Cheryl, 34, who tweeted, “Will you be my Valentine?!” Jimmy is asked to quickly answer ‘Yes’.
Hi There: In December 2021, Sky Sports’ Jimmy Laura Woods quickly dubbed “Beautiful” with a kissing emoji after she shared a photo showing off one of her outfits
The pair seem to have a lot in common with photos posted to his social media showing him taking the stage with a microphone in hand.
It’s Denise’s first relationship since she revealed that she had split from partner of seven-year Eddie in a New Years post on Instagram after discovering his infidelity in November 2021.
She caught Eddie sexually flirting with three women and described his behavior as “disrespectful and devastatingly hurtful.”
Denise claimed she found photos and Instagram posts on Eddie’s iPad, detailing the ordeal in her autobiography, A Bit Of Me: From Basildon To Broadway And Back.
Denise wrote: “There were also Instagram posts referring to phone sex with a third woman. I quickly found the woman’s profile by her screen name, only to find that I’d previously blocked her from my Instagram account – which seemed odd to me.”
She continued: “This was a woman I didn’t know who clearly had an online connection with my boyfriend. Why would I have blocked her from my Instagram account. I immediately unblocked her and messaged her how she knew Eddie.’
She added: “She suggested that Eddie probably went into my phone and blocked her so she couldn’t message me.
“She’s apparently been talking to Eddie via FaceTime and texting for a long time – often from our house and sometimes from my flat in Hampstead, which she thought was his.
“They had never met in person, but she said the conversations had turned sexual in nature fairly quickly – some of the things I found on the phone seemed to support that.
“But she was mad at Eddie for apparently ghosting her.”
Split: Denise announced she split from Eddie Boxshall in January after discovering he cheated on her during their seven-year relationship (Photo February 2020)