4. John Lennon
Beatles star John Lennon had a reasonably middle-class upbringing after his maternal aunt Mimi and her husband George raised him in comfortable circumstances. His father, Alfred, abandoned his mother Julia, after John’s birth in October 1940 – making a failed attempt at reconciliation a few years later. With his mother apparently unwilling, or unable, to care for him, Mimi and her husband became guardians of the future Beatle when he was five. As the Beatles garnered success, John bought Mimi a bungalow on the English coast, where she lived until she died in 1991. The actress Kristin Scott Thomas played Mimi in the 2009 film Nowhere Boy.