BELOW: HERE IS A BRIEF PICTORIAL GALLERY AT THE LAUNCH PARTY FOR FLANAGAN’S NEW AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL BOOK ….. “ONE OF THE FAMILY … 10 YEARS WITH THE KRAYS ” AT THE BLIND BEGGAR PUB , WHITECHAPEL RD , LONDON
FLANAGAN’s life started in 1941 as Hitler was bombing London. She had to be evacuated & she had to be evacuated to Hemel Hempsted but later returned to her home town of Islington.
Convent educated in Holloway Rd, North London, she grew up with a younger brother & sister, along with a little English mother & a devastatingly handsome Irish father.
Her christian name was Maureen & she started work in a hairdressers at 15 years old when her father died. She was spotted by a photographer aged 18 at a hairdressers convention where she’d been asked to model. He took some photos & showed them to an agent who suggested she model on the catwalk. Maureen worked for all the top fashion houses & stores, everything she tried on sold out in hours.
At 20 years old she married a local lad, Patrick Flanagan & for 3 years they lived in Camden, North London. Her agent sent her up to the BBC where she appeared on shows including Benny Hill, Monty Python’s Flying Circus, The Dave Allen Show, The Likely Lads & Only Fools & Horses. She also filmed ‘Dracula 72’ alongside Christopher Lee.
At 26 years old she was known as the most photographed model in Britain & her legs were insured for £25,000 which was unheard of in the 60’s! She went to Germany to advertise cars & was then flown to Amsterdam, where she was photographed covered in diamonds, then New York to model ‘Hot Pants’.
She became great friends with George Best, Malcolm Allison & Barbara Windsor & filmed with Tony Curtis, Roger Moore & Charlton Heston, while taking up using the one name – Flanagan. It worked wonders!
She had become Violet Kray’s hairdresser & on meeting The Twins & ….elder brother Charlie, became a regular visitor to Vallance Rd & is now considered an expert on all Kray memorabilia, being called upon to examine items belonging to all 3 brothers at auctions. She visited The Twins regularly until they died & arranged all 3 funerals, seating everyone in the church at them all.
Flanagan was called up to The Sun newspaper’s head office by the Editor & it worked. As she was leaving she was asked her age & replied with a smile “21”, which they duly printed. In fact she was 30 & just getting divorced!
She married again in 1976, having found the East London years before through the Kray brothers & had a son, JJ, who is a DJ. Sadly her 2nd husband, Terry Cox, died after a heart transplant & Flanagan never left the East End. Flanagan now has 3 grandaughters.
She’s currently organising the ‘Biggest Kray Memorabilia Night’ & experts to enthusiasts from all over the country will attend the event, being held at The Blind Beggar Pub in Whitechapel (Please see the ‘Events’ page).
Flanagan has a thousand stories to tell.
Maureen Flanagan, best known by her stage name Flanagan, was an early tabloid model. She later became known as a most trusted inner-circle “Godmother” and peace-maker to many of the most hardened and feared British gangland figures of the 1960’s era to the present day, including The Kray Twins (she was also the family’s personal hairdresser and friend ) and a great many others . She has been one of the key organisers behind many of the gangland funerals and to this day remains one of the inner circles most trusted confidents
She had an acting career in the late sixties/early seventies, mainly in bit parts on The Benny Hill Show, Monty Python’s Flying Circus, and several British sex comedies. She also played the lead role in the Danish film The Loves of Cynthia (a.k.a. Cynthia’s Sister) in 1971.
After her acting career ended, Flanagan continued to remain in the public eye, owing to her association with the Kray Twins and her efforts to secure their release She also wrote the book “Intimate Secrets of an Escort Girl” (Everest books, 1974). The book was serialized in the magazine Tit-Bits, accompanied by a blurb which said “Britain’s most photographed model lays bare the facts of her working life in the sauciest story of the year
In 1997, Flanagan made a one-off return to nude modeling as a mature woman, posing fully nude in the magazine Men’s World. In the accompanying interview she said her second husband had recently died after a heart transplant operation, and that she was busy raising a then-16 year old son
below is a link to Flanagan’s new website which is presently under construction , with more to be added