A keen rider has made the Miss England final by winning her regional heat.
Charley White, who enjoys team chasing, was crowned Miss Northamptonshire on 24 March at Kelham Hall.
She was also a winner of the MeSheMe Top Model contest, which was held at the same event.
Charley, 18, said she is a “true country girl” and used her rural roots as inspiration for the “eco dress” round of the regional final.
“I thought ‘what can I do that will represent the countryside?’ so I made a dress out of 600 pheasant feathers,” Charley told H&H, thanking her mum and friend for their help.
“I wasn’t really nervous until I was about to walk out on the stage for the final time, and then I was really nervous as I haven’t done anything like this before.
“I still can’t believe it!”
Charley admitted she loves the “thrill and speed” of team chasing and has ridden on Dapper Dobbins’ intermediate teams with her 17.1hh sport horse “Hero”, who came free with another horse bought by her family.
This is the first time Charley has taken part in a pageant — and it was quickly back to reality afterwards.
“The next day I was back down at the yard, I still had acrylic nails, eyelashes and hair extensions on from the day before, my hair was pulled back and I said to my friends ‘I’ve gone from all glam to knee-deep in mud trying to catch ponies’,” laughed Charley.
The 18-year-old is on her gap year and has a place at De Montford University in Leicester from September.
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She is carrying out fundraisers for charities Beauty With A Cause and Hope With Cancer ahead of the finals, which are set to take place in the summer.
This includes taking photos at a show at Moulton College recently, with the proceeds donated to the charities, and is planning on organising a sponsored ride.
Charley added it was her late grandmother who inspired her to enter the Miss England contest.
“Until three years ago I lived with my nan and she is the biggest inspiration in my life,” said Charley.
“She passed away nearly three years ago and I had really bad social anxiety. I didn’t want to do anything, I became really depressed, started failing my A levels at school when I had always done well before and was really down.
“The horses pulled me through and out of the hardest time of my life.”
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