Itís no mystery, says Toyah
and actress Toyah Willcox is so mean her husband says that her purse screams
if she opens it.
Willcox shot to fame during the punk rock era. Her appearances in Derek
Jarmanís 1977 film Jubilee and the cult classic Quadrophenia launched her
as an antiestablishment figure.
the 1980s, she sang hits such as I Want To Be Free and Itís A Mystery.
In 1983, she was voted Best Female Singer at the British Rock and Pop Awards.
She has also starred in many West End plays, including Taming of the Shrew
and Cabaret, and has recently started filming a drama for ITV2, The Secret
Diary of a Call Girl, starring Billie Piper.
49, lives with her husband, the former King Crimson guitarist Robert Fripp,
much money do you have in your wallet? I have £100 which is about
normal. I very rarely use cash, though Ė itís purely for emergencies.
you have any credit cards? Iíve got three but I only really use one.
I use the other two when Iím abroad Ė an Amex card for emergencies, and
a Lloyds TSB Visa card which I use in France.
main card is a Marks & Spencer Mastercard which earns me points, which
I use to renew my underwear drawer. It doesnít take long to collect points
as I get through thousands each month on that card.
you a saver or a spender? Iím a saver. My husband says my purse screams
when I open it. I go through every bill Ė itís amazing to find so many
things that shouldnít be there, like bank charges. I claimed back my bank
charges even though it was only about £200. Itís the principle of
it Ė Iíve been known to reclaim 1p.
a savings account, a current account and a Lloyds TSB tracker savings account.
much did you earn last year? Iím earning more now than Iíve ever done.
In terms of acting, singing and writing, I made around £400,000.
I have just over £2m in investments if you include all my properties,
but the income from that is about £75,000 a year Ė shockingly low.
I think Iíll need an investment portfolio worth more like £8m to
retire with the kind of lifestyle Iím used to now.
you ever been really hard up? When I first moved to London at 18, I
was living on £5 a week. I remember sharing an apartment with two
drama students and pinching two brussels sprouts out of the freezer. The
longest I went without food was three days.
is the most lucrative work you have ever done? Did you use the fee for
something special? I did a Mum deodorant advert in 1986 that paid £40,000
a year Ė I think it ran for two or three years. It involved one dayís work
with Griff Rhys Jones directing. I made two albums from that money.
you own a property? I have two properties on the Côte díAzur
which I rent out, and three properties in England. I also have three other
properties with my husband.
of the French houses is a new-build. I rent it out to an IT firm. It cost
me £200,000 but itís worth twice that now.
completed on the second. It was something that comes on the market so rarely,
I pulled out every stop.
two riverfront properties in the Midlands, which I bought in 1999 and 2000.
I bought the first one for £147,000 then the one next door for £170,000.
Theyíve tripled in value. My parents live in one and the family uses the
other for holidays.
have a one-bedroom house in Chiswick, which I will never get rid of because
I canít envisage buying into London again. I bought it in 1994 and I use
it as a work studio.
main residence is in Worcester with my husband. It is a six-bedroom Georgian
house we bought in 2001.
you invest in shares? I bought a £20,000 bond from Standard Life
in 2000. I cashed in recently to buy the house in France. It was worth
£1,000 more than my original investment, a poor return for six years.
I also have premium bonds, but I cashed in £30,000 for the house
in France, as well as about £10,000 from savings. I have a self-invested
personal pension with Selestia into which I put £64,000 last year.
Itís made £13,000 this year.
you have any Isas? I have a cash Isa with Nationwide into which I put
the maximum each year.
you have a pension or other retirement plan? I have four but the highest
performing one is with Legal & General. I havenít put anything into
that since 1989, but itís grown beautifully every year Ė double digits,
I would say.
you believe pensions are a good thing? I think I could have made my
money go 10 times further by investing in property.
has been your worst investment? The Standard Life bond was a complete
waste of money. I could have bought a place in Sheffield for a little bit
your best? The place Iíve just bought. Itís already gone up by 100,000
Euro (£68,000) since February.
you manage your own financial affairs? I have an accountant and advisers,
but I choose where things are placed.
aspect of our taxation system would you change? I get very angry that
hard working people get taxed as much as the billionaires. I would add
another tax bracket for the ridiculously wealthy.
Iím a carer for my parents and I think carers in general should be helped
out with tax breaks.
is your financial priority? To feel safe, especially when weíre living
in such an unstable society. I worry that something awful may happen and
then any wealth I have may not be worth much at all. Iím also worried about
what Gordon Brown will do.
you have a money weakness? I probably travel too much. I often just
go off to places like Brazil or Ecuador to have a look at the property
market. I like the idea of buying a house where nobody knows who I am.
is the most extravagant thing you have ever bought? I once bought a
£2,000 emerald necklace after doing 74 performances of Peter Pan
in Canterbury in 1994.
you play the lottery? Yep. I think itís a fantastic charity. On opening
nights, I put a lottery ticket in the good luck cards I send round to the
rest of the actors.
would you do if you won? Probably give it away.
is the most important lesson you have learnt about money? I think you
need to treat money like itís an alien from another planet. You have to
learn its language.