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Annie Lennox 'had a hand' in the Spice Girls' success

Spice Girls manager Simon Fuller has revealed for the first time that singer Annie Lennox was secretly one of the architects of the girl group's success.

Fuller explained the Eurythmics star played an important but unheralded role in encouraging the chart-topping group to "ham up" their characters, which helped them top the charts around the world.

The Spice Girls pictured in 1997 at the Smash Hits Poll Winners Party. Credit: All Action/EMPICS Entertainment

He pointed out in a documentary for BBC Radio 2, to air tomorrow at 10pm, that Lennox may not be too happy to have her formative role in shaping the band made public.

Fuller revealed, "Almost directly she was the one who who got them to be louder and more brash and more specific, so Emma, who was the sweet cute blonde girl, became Baby Spice. She just played it and hammed it up - none of these names actually existed, but Annie gave them focus."