Harry Styles’ parents — All about his close familial ties

Harry Styles

Harry Styles, who has been in the public eye for more than a decade, is known for being open about his family since the early days of his music career. In his own words, he has had a “great childhood” and credits his family’s love and support for his level-headedness in the face of fame.

While Harry’s father maintains a low-key profile, his mother is a social media influencer and philanthropist who has contributed and raised funds for numerous charity organizations including the Believe in Magic Charity, Refuge Charity, and Parkinson’s UK.

Harry’s father Desmond Styles, worked in finance while his mother Anne, was an office worker

Harry Edward Styles was born in Redditch, Worcestershire on February 1, 1994, to Desmond “Des” Styles and Anne Selley. He grew up alongside his older sister, Gemma, in Holmes Chapel in Cheshire Village.

Harry’s father Desmond and sister Gemma styles

As per The Guardian, Desmond Styles previously worked in finance as the Operational Manager at HFC Bank for nearly 16 years. Later, he worked for The Funding Corporation as a sales and marketing director before becoming the director of Consult HS Limited in January 2014.

Harry has said that Desmond was a fan of rock music and mostly listened to the Rolling Stones, Fleetwood Mac, Queen, and Pink Floyd. On the other hand, Anne, who was an office worker, listened to artists such as Shania Twain and Savage Garden.

“I couldn’t really get [my father’s copy of The Dark Side of the Moon by Pink Floyd] but I just remember being like – this is really fucking cool. Then my mom would always have Shania Twain, and Savage Garden, Norah Jones going on. I had a great childhood. I’ll admit it,” Harry told Rolling Stone.

Harry further credits his family for how he turned out and has said that he cannot play the “tortured artist part” as he had a “really nice upbringing and always felt loved”.

Harry’s parents decided to go their separate ways in 2001 when he was only seven years old

In 2001, Des and Anne sat Harry and Gemma down to let them know that they were separating.

“He was only about seven when I sat them down and told them I was leaving. Everybody was in tears. both of them were crying. Generally, you wouldn’t see him cry as much as maybe some kids do – he wasn’t ­generally emotional or a cry baby – but he cried then,” Des told Daily Record, recalling Harry’s reaction to the news.

Harry's mother Anne Selley
Harry’s mother Anne Selley

Desmond feels that the day he told his children the news of the divorce was the worst day of his life. However, he did not immediately walk away from the family after the announcement, and instead went on to live together for two more years. This was done to make the leaving process easier and more gradual.

“I didn’t just leave, it was a decision we should split. Things weren’t good for a while and it was the best way forward. At the time, everybody was in tears but children are very resilient.”

Harry, on the other hand, has admitted that he does not remember that fateful day as he explained:

“I don’t remember. Honestly, when you’re that young, you can kind of block it out. … I can’t say that I remember the exact thing. I didn’t realize that was the case until just now. Yeah, I mean, I was seven. It’s one of those things. Feeling supported and loved by my parents never changed.”

Despite the divorce, Desmond kept in touch with his children, saw them every couple of weeks, and consistently supported them financially and emotionally. Desmond has clarified that he is “not an estranged dad” and moreover, Harry is known to have a good relationship with his father.

“I’m just very proud to be his dad but I don’t want to exploit that either, I just want to be here if he needs me,” said Desmond.

Harry was the best man at his mother’s wedding to Robin Twist in 2013

After the separation, Harry and his sister lived with their mother. In 2003, Anne married John Cox, who was a businessman and a landlord, on April 12. They had known each other for two years and had been dating for a year during the time of the wedding. But the marriage did not last as the Coxes divorced after a few years.

In 2013, Anne married her longtime boyfriend Robin Twist in Congleton, Cheshire where Harry was the best man at the wedding. Twist had two children from his first marriage, Mike and Amy, who became Harry’s stepsiblings. It is also known that Robin helped Anne raise Harry and Gemma.

Robin Twist and Anne Selley
Robin Twist and Anne Selley

“I fill up every time Harry’s on TV. I feel incredibly proud and it’s so surreal to see my boy on stage. At the end of the day, he’s my little baby and he is on stage in front of millions of people,” said Anne when asked about Harry’s achievements at a young age, The Daily Record reported.

Anne and Robin were present at Harry’s first audition on The X Factor and wore t-shirts with his name to support him. Anne had always been supportive of Harry’s singing dream and his school band, White Eskimos, and she was even the one who encouraged him to try out at The X Factor in 2010.

“I’d gone [to the audition] because my mum told me I was good from singing in the car …  but your mum tells you things to make you feel good, so you take it with a pinch of salt. I didn’t really know what I was expecting when I went on there,” Harry told Rolling Stone.

In 2017, shortly after their fourth anniversary, Robin Twist passed away following a “long battle with cancer” at 57 years old.

Anne Twist is a social media personality and advocates for the Parkinson’s UK charity

Anne maintains a public persona and is a social media personality and philanthropist who has worked in a variety of charity organizations. She also keeps in touch with fans of Harry and uses her platform to advocate and raise funds for Parkinson’s UK, which is a research and support charity for Parkinson’s disease

Anne’s involvement in the charity is inspired by a cause very close to her heart as her father, Brian Selley, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2009. She has since been a member of the charity for nearly ten years.

One of her most notable efforts in promoting the charity includes completing a wing walk in October 2020 to raise £10,000. The money went towards supporting the research efforts and improving patient care. She talked about her experience in an interview with Independent, saying:

“It was a terrifying experience but I was really determined to push myself out of my comfort zone. I know that the support Parkinson’s UK provides to people with Parkinson’s, as well as for their families and carers, is invaluable, and it’s so important to fund the research needed to find better treatments for this devastating condition.”

Anne’s father Brian Selley

Brian passed away in August 2021, aged 86, after battling Parkinson’s for nearly 12 years.

Anne supported Harry’s December 2020 Vogue cover which generated some controversy for his unconventional clothes

Harry Styles appeared in the December issue of Vogue Magazine in 2020, making history as the first-ever male star to grace the cover. However, his cover, where he is dressed in a voluminous gown, was criticized by conservatives for undermining masculinity.

While numerous celebrities chimed in defense of Harry via social media, his mother showed her support in an appearance on the British television talk show ‘Lorraine’. She embraced the cover and even said that she might have influenced Harry’s fashion sense.

“I think maybe I had something to do with it because I was always a big fan of doing fancy dress with them when they were smaller. Which Gemma hated, but Harry always embraced. But you know, who doesn’t love playing dress-up?” Anne said.

Harry affirmed his love and regard for his mother in the Rolling Stone interview as he reflected:

“Since I’ve been 10, it has kind of felt like – protect Mom at all costs. … My mom is very strong. She has the greatest heart. [Her house in Cheshire] is where I want to go when I want to spend some time.”