Revealing Charmian Biggs

Carol By Carol, 11th Oct 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Celebrities>TV

I watched the series on ITV Mrs Biggs, with great interest. What an interesting character she is. Read on to find out more.

Revealing Charmian Biggs

Years ago I lived in Redhill, which is very close to the town of Reigate in Surrey. Charmian, who became the wife of the notorious train robber Ronnie Biggs lived there with her parents. Her father was a headmaster, and when she met and fell in love with Ronnie, who was a small time criminal, it was in the eyes of her father, the worst thing that could have happened to her.

So when ITV made a series about their life together, I was most interested in watching it, as I can remember the news paper headlines screaming out. ” Local headmaster’s daughter elopes with small time crook.” or words to that effect. Her father disowned her, poor mum was stuck in the middle, she could not harden her heart to the fact that her daughter was so in love with Ronnie, and also pregnant by him

This is what happened next

So Charmian and Ronnie got married, welcomed their first son, her father was not interested, but her mother did come to visit her new grand child. Ronnie tried so hard to be a better person for Charmian, they had a love that was so strong, it seemed it could survive anything, so he turned his back on his life of crime and set up his own business, working hard to prove to Charmian that he could turn his life around for her.

They wanted to buy their own house, but he had no money for a deposit. His friend Bruce Reynolds came along, inviting him to take part in what became the Great Train Robbery, and although initially Ronnie tried to resist, the thought of being able to provide his wife and baby with their own home became too much for him to turn the offer down.

Charmian was in blissful ignorance of what was happening, believing that Ronnie was doing a tree felling job, and when she found out, she was hurt, angry and disgusted with him, but it did not dent their love in any way. But from then on she lived in fear that justice would catch up with him, and when it did, she was heartbroken to discover that he would serve 25 years for his part in the robbery.

Ronnie escaped from prison

When Ronnie managed to escape, the family fled to Australia, changed their name, and started a new life. Whilst they were living there, Charmian gave birth to their third son. But once again, the police caught up with Ronnie, and he had to flee to Brazil.

Whilst Charmian was trying to carry on as usual, fate dealt her a very cruel blow, when her eldest son was killed in a car crash. Charmian and her other two sons escaped with minor injuries. She then had the heartbreaking task of writing to tell Ronnie about his death, and then trying to cope on her own, as she knew if Ronnie returned too offer her support, he would be captured immediately.

But such was her strength, instead of sitting down and feeling sorry for herself, she went back to university and got a degree, enabling her to have a career in journalism and writing, ensuring she could provide for herself and her two remaining sons.

The police caught up with Ronnie again in Brazil, but they had to get permission to deport him, and when Ronnie discovered that a girl he had slept with called Raimunda was pregnant, even though he couldn’t be sure he was the father, he had the idea of marrying her to protect himself from being captured.

But Charmian proved to be the strong person then

After explaining the situation to Charmian, she came out to visit him bringing his two sons, and then he asked her for a divorce. The story then finished with Charmian returning to England to make peace with her parents and announce her imminent divorce. Her father then said ” I told you so.” and welcomed his grandsons in to the family fold.

After that,, Raimunda gave birth to a son called Michael, and finally in 2001 Biggs gave himself up to English justice because of his failing ill health after a series of strokes, and he now lives in a North London Nursing home.

Charmian Biggs, who reverted to the name Powell after her divorce fascinates me more than Ronnie does. I don’t see Ronnie as a bad man, more a weak one, and he still maintains that Charmian is the love of his life. Raimunda was a means to an end, it kept him free, but in the end that freedom meant nothing without Charmian.

The story shows Charmian walking away from Ronnie in disgust, and wanting to divorce him because of his infidelity with Raimunda. But I believe it was because of her love for Ronnie, that she gave him a divorce. She sacrificed her own right to be his wife so he could keep his freedom.

After all these years, Charmian still has contact with Ronnie, because no matter how much he has made her suffer over they years, he is the man she married for better or worse, and the father of her children, and she still loves him.

Charmian was the driving force in their relationship, and she was left to cope on her own, and bring up their sons. I admire her driving force and strong character. She has never married again, and I hope she has managed to find contentment and happiness that she deserves, through her sons and grandchildren.

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Australia, Brazil Great Train Robbery, Bruce Reynolds, Charmian, Criminal, Escapes, Fugitive, Michael, New Life, Nursing Home, Pregnant, Prison, Raimunda, Ronnie Bigg, Son, Sons, Strength Of Character, Wife

Meet the author

author avatar Carol
I am a proud mother and grandmother, and an author. I have had 7 books published. My hobbies are walking, swimming, and playing badminton. I try to raise more awareness of autism with my writing.

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author avatar Buzz
12th Oct 2012 (#)

A gripping story told in wonderfully absorbing words. Glad to see you again, Carol. God bless!

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author avatar Carol
12th Oct 2012 (#)

Thanks Buzz, great to have you back.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
12th Oct 2012 (#)

Sometimes real life stories are more thrilling than fiction with twists and turns! Great share, Carol - siva

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author avatar Carol
13th Oct 2012 (#)

Thanks so much siva for reading

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author avatar Md Rezaul Karim
3rd Nov 2012 (#)

You always update us about contemporary issues... interestingly, and you have got a good heart in it...which I like most-- just like the gleaming lips (check your photo!)....
Thank you anyway...

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author avatar Carol
7th Nov 2012 (#)

Bless you Rezaul for your kind words.

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