Teenage Fenland model beats thousands to reach final stages of national beauty pageant

A TEENAGE model from Fenland has pipped thousands of young hopefuls to make the final stages of a national beauty pageant.

April Rayson, from Upwell, is one of 50 girls vying to become the UK’s Miss Teen Queen 2011. The charity competition - which attracted more than 17,000 entries - helps to raise money to renovate schools in Africa.

As well as picking up a host of beauty treats and modelling opportunities, the eventual winner will be flown out to Ghana to see where the money is being spent.

The 16-year-old, who needs public votes to help her achieve her dream, said: “I was looking online at modelling agencies and this competition popped up. I thought I’d apply and just 12 hours later they rang me back.

“I never thought I’d get through. I couldn’t believe it - I was absolutely speechless.”

April shone in front of the camera at a fashion shoot in London and returned home to find out she had made the final 50.

She said: “My mum dropped everything to take me to London. My auntie came as well - they loved it. We thought it would only be a little studio but it was massive.

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“It’s all I have ever wanted to do. It would mean the world to me if I won.”

The Downham Market High School student - whose mother runs her own photography business - is awaiting her GCSE results and hopes to go to college to study photography.

Text lines are now open for the beauty contest. The two girls who receive the most votes will go through to a live final in London on September 2.

To vote for April text TQ45 to 81319. Texts costs 75p plus your standard network charge. For more information on the contest visit: missteenqueenuk.com

April added: “I would love people to ring up and try to get me to the final. It would be a dream come true.”

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