Single moms can now compete in Miss Great Britain

Last Updated: Dec 04, 2010, 18:11 PM IST

London: Organisers of this year`s Miss Great Britain competition are trying to make the event up-to-date. They have scrapped an outdated 65-year rule that banned single mothers from entering.

The earlier rule said that entrants must be unmarried, but if you were a single mother you were also barred.

Now, for the first time in the Miss Great Britain contest`s history, "beauties with babies" are free to compete, The Sun reported.

Corrine Marie Lee, 22, was 19 when she became pregnant with Hope, now 21 months. She had just won the Miss Lincoln title but her dream of becoming Miss England vanished with a baby on the way.

"The rules meant I was knocked out - I was gutted. It was totally antiquated. But the rule change has given me a second chance and I am so grateful," Corrine said.

Corrine believes her experience as a mum will improve her chances in the contest. "Motherhood pushes you harder to achieve your dreams and shouldn`t be looked on in any way as being a bad thing."

Louise Carroll, 25, was the first single mum to qualify for the finals - when she won Miss Glasgow. She has found entering the pageant the best tonic for the post-natal depression she has suffered since the birth of Mia, 18 months earlier.

"It`s amazing they`ve allowed mums in and given me the chance to shine. Before I had Mia I had always thought about entering, but never had. I entered to try to help my confidence. It`s been the best boost ever and I`d encourage other mums to do it," she said.

Jennifer Perkin, 27, has the youngest and oldest child of any contestant.

She was 16 when Maria, now 10, was born. But Sienna, 15 months, arrived under less trying circumstances.

"Having Maria forced me to grow up, do well and go back to college to study art and design. I am just so glad that the Miss GB rules have changed."

"Mothers after they`ve had their children can look even sexier than before. I feel that I have a lot to give and would love to catch up on a career in TV or presenting -- something I could have done several years ago given the chance," she said.

IANS