Russell Brand’s personal life was once the subject of regular media headlines, surrounded by scandal and controversy due to his very public antics.
In recent years, however, Brand, 44, appears to have made efforts to keep his home life out of the spotlight, following a tumultuous marriage and subsequent divorce from pop star Katy Perry.
While the comedian, actor and presenter is back in the headlines as he denies allegations of rape and sexual assault, little is known about his wife of six years, Laura Gallacher.
The couple have three children together and dated briefly before Brand’s first marriage to Perry in 2010, while he was still growing his comedy career. They then reconnected after splitting from their respective partners.
Gallacher’s father is Scottish golfer Bernard Gallacher OBE, formerly a Ryder Cup captain for several European teams. Growing up in Surrey, England, she was raised on the Wentworth Estate, a sprawling estate in Runnymede comprising several luxury houses.
She is the sister of broadcaster and radio presenter Kirsty Gallacher, who rose to fame as a Sky Sports presenter in the late Nineties and has more recently presented for GB News and Smooth Radio.
It was, in fact, Kirsty who introduced her sister to Brand back in 2007, when Gallacher was 19 and Brand was 30.
“She fully loves me for what I am,” Brand once told Stylist. “She’s not interested in the famous person at all.”
They dated briefly but split soon after, and Brand went on to marry Perry in 2010. The couple separated just two years later, with Brand telling the “California Gurls” singer he was filing for divorce via text, just moments before she was due to go onstage.
Gallacher, who works in fashion, was once interviewed about her relationship with Brand on the Made By Mammas podcast.
“I hadn’t seen Russell for years,” Gallacher recalled. “He was so different. We both immediately knew it was going to be serious.”
She explained: “You have to rebuild your foundations and trust again, we did it the right way. It was very slow, it was getting to know each other and going out on day trips together.”
She recalled to Grazia that the day they ran into one another, in 2015, her ex had “literally moved out of our flat that day and I was heartbroken, with mascara running down my face”.
“A friend dragged me out on a walk to the canal in east London, where I’d never been in my life, and as we came on to the footpath Russell was standing there, like he’d organised it,” she said.
After they resumed dating, she told You: “I remember him saying, ‘I think I want a quiet life and a family,’ and it was exactly what I wanted. So, then it was about seeing if we could build a foundation to make that happen.”
Brand and Gallacher’s first child, daughter Mabel, was born in 2016. They married a year later in August, in an intimate church ceremony near their home in Henley-on-Thames, Oxon. The nuptials were attended by close friends and family, along with a then-nine-month-old Mabel.
Their second daughter, Peggy, was born in 2018. A year later, Brand came under fire for admitting he left Gallacher to do the majority of the parenting, claiming he was useless at basic duties such as nappy-changing and mealtimes.
Brand went on to praise Gallacher’s parenting skills, describing her as “astonishing”.
Asked why he doesn’t take on more of the practical tasks of parenting, the Get Him To The Greek star said he’s “still of a romantic and reflective... disposition,” adding that he often feels “inept” when looking after his youngest child.
In a 2017 interview, Brand told The Guardian that he was enjoying a new-found domesticity with Gallacher.
“I’ve never had domesticity before,” he said. “Most of my life has been an extension of the grandiose idea of what glamour would look like if it had to have a kitchen. And I feel sometimes like a refugee in my house with this woman, this calm, beautiful woman, who in the most beautiful way possible doesn’t care about what I do. She’s not interested, in the most delightful way. ‘Oh, that sounds nice.’”
In June, Brand revealed that he and Gallacher were expecting their third child while appearing on the podcast The Diary of a CEO. It is believed that Gallacher has since given birth.
While she previously had an Instagram account under the name Laura Brand, with over 145,000 followers, it appears to have been deleted.
As well as fashion, Gallacher has written and illustrated several books, including The Joy Journal for Magical Everyday Play: Easy Activities & Creative Craft for Kids and Their Grown-ups.
In March 2022, Brand promoted Gallacher’s latest book, Slow Down and Be Here Now: “You might not know that my wife @thejoyjournal writes children books thats because I only talk about myself!” he wrote in the caption. “But this book she wrote teaching children to be present in the moments and appreciate nature, is fantastic. And god knows if you are a parent you need it!”
Brand and Gallacher also run The Stay Free Foundation together, which supports people with addiction and mental health issues.