Real name: Tracy Shaw
Birthdate: July 27, 1973
Partner: Robert Ashworth
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Shaw was born into the hotel and pub trade, at the time when her parents ran the Talbot Hotel in Belper, Derbyshire. Shaw attended St. Benedict's School in Derbyshire, and went to the Arden School of Theatre in Manchester in 1990, where she got a degree in theatre studies.
Her best known work at present is hairdresser Maxine Peacock in the long-running, popular British soap 'Coronation Street' which is set and filmed in Manchester, England. Shaws's character met a tragic and unfortunate end in 2003 when she was murdered by serial killer Richard Hillman.
She has also appeared in numerous ITV dramas. In 2003 Shaw appeared naked as Sally in the stage play 'The Blue Room', starring alongside a nude Jason Connery (Sean Connery's son).
Following marriage, and battles with anorexia and drinking, Shaw divorced her husband post a two month period in rehab. She now has two children with her partner of four years.
She also had a short lived pop career in 1998, releasing two singles under the PWL label, neither of them reached the top 40 tho.
Shaw has struggled with anorexia and bulimia (falling from eight stone to just over five stone). She was also caught shoplifting, which she put down to simple absent-mindedness, and no charges were pressed. In May 1996 things looked up as she was presented with the '1996 Rear of the Year' title. She had a series of high-profile romances, including engagement to Darren Day, which falsely lead to media stories of cocaine addiction.
Shaw married Robert Ashworth in June 2001, but a series of early problems occurred including a row on a return flight from the Caribbean having been filming ITV1's "Wish You Were Here". In 2003, her father Karl Shaw was featured in an article in the News of the World, and said that Shaw survived on "three bottles of wine and a packet of crisps a day". He also said that if "she carries on this way it will kill her".
Shaw made moves to turn her life around and including spending two months in rehab in the US and leaving her husband. Prior to this she had set up an eating disorder charity called "The Tracy Shaw Foundation" which helps teenagers combat eating disorders.
Her marriage ended in divorce in 2004, and Shaw set up home with and subsequently became engaged to childhood friend and businessman Ashley Poundall, son of her mother's partner of eight years, Colin. The couple now live in Caversham, Berkshire and have two sons Louis (born March 2005), and Luca (born September 2006). Shaw plans to return to stage or screen when the children are a little older.
In 2000, alleged stalker Kevin Sedgwick plead guilty to harassing Shaw over a period of five years. He had written a number of letters to her, as well as Coronation Street co-stars Jacqueline Pirie and Jennifer James, and hung around the grounds of Granada Studios in Manchester, put his arms around Miss Shaw, and asked for a kiss. Sedgwick plead guilty later that year to multiple acts of gross indecency with children and had suffered from hearing voices in his head.