A South Tyneside beauty queen is making her final pamper preparations for this year’s Miss England contest.
Ashley Robertson, 26, from The Lawe Top, will be strutting her stuff against finalists from across the country when she dons her sash in the prestigious final, which takes place on July 14 in Birmingham.
The beauty queen won a place in the final after winning the Miss Durham Tees Valley competition earlier this year.
Now she is preparing to compete in rounds including Miss Sportswoman, Miss Knowledge, Miss Talent, Miss Popularity, Miss Charity and more.
A highlight is set to be the Miss Eco round in which Ashley has made an eco-friendly dress made from recycled plastic bottles.
Ashley is no stranger to the pageant world after competing in Miss England for the past five years with various titles.
She says she’s hoping to build on her experience this year.
“I’m hoping to take everything I’ve learnt to help put in a better performance,” she said. “I think having that experience will definitely help because I already know what to expect, what is involved and how much hard work goes into it.
“Pageants aren’t what they used to be. Today it’s all about finding an all round girl, with talent, fitness, knowledge and creativity but, most importantly, someone how cares for their community and charity.”
Competing in pageants has led to a career change for Ashley who has swapped being a beauty therapist for becoming a full time charity fundraiser.
Over the years, she’s raised thousands of pounds for the Heel & Toe charity, which supports young people in the North East with disabilities with events such as the Great North Run and a skywalk.
She was so inspired by their work that she has become a fundraiser for the charity, who are also her official sponsor in Miss England.
Ashley said: “As part of Miss England you carry out charity fundraising which is how I found out about Heel & Toe. I’ve done lots of sponsored events for them over the years and feel so inspired by what they do.”
•As part of Miss England there is a public vote, that will open from noon on Friday, which will help fast-track a girl in the final. You can vote for Ashley by texting MISS ENGLAND03 to 63333
(Texts cost 50p)