Woman Who Lost Eight Stone Has Been Crowned Miss Great Britain
A woman who lost eight stone (50kg) by swapping takeaways for healthy eating has been crowned the new Miss Great Britain.
Jen Atkin, 26, won the longest-running pageant in the UK at a glittering national final in Leicester.
The aviation administrator, who lives in Ulceby, Lincolnshire, has been keen to promote a healthy lifestyle after her remarkable weight loss, which came over a two-year period and also included regular visits to the gym.
After slimming from 17st (108kg) down to 9st (57kg), Jen was named Miss Scunthorpe before going on to compete for the title of Miss England in 2018, where she finished as first runner-up.
She then briefly retired from competing in pageants after getting married but decided to give it one more shot after having her name put forward to represent Great Britain. Bet she's glad about that now.
After being named the 75th Miss Great Britain following a whirlwind couple of years, Jen said: "It was such a shock - three years ago I would never ever expected to be winning Miss GB. Hard work really does pay off."
After turning her life around, Jen featured on Good Morning Britain with Ben Shephard and Kate Garraway for a debate on weight loss.
She is also a country singer and released her first single in 2018 through the record label MHMG, reaching number two in the ReverbNation national charts.
It's not only Jen representing the country for her family either - her twin brother Sam Atkin is an international athlete who competed for Great Britain at last year's European Indoor Championships over the 3,000m distance.
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Jen said: "I'm so incredibly honoured to be the 75th Miss Great Britain, representing our country alongside my twin brother who runs for Team GB.
"There were 45 Miss Great Britain finalists and I was lucky to not only win the personality award but take home the crown and title of Miss Great Britain 2020. It felt absolutely incredible, I'm over the moon."
Speaking about her plans for the year ahead, she said: "I have so much in the pipeline for my reign, including the release of my next country single this spring."
More than 400 guests watched the Miss Great Britain live event at the Athena in Leicester, where contestants took to the stage in fashion wear, swimwear and evening wear before being interviewed live on stage.
Kate Solomons, the national director of Miss Great Britain, said: "The ladies have a strong, entrepreneurial spirit and have already worked so hard in the build-up to the competition, supporting our charities and promoting the brand.
"The contest now attracts such a versatile mix of women, from full time mums, those studying for various careers and this year we had a farmer, a rugby player, a doctor and a dentist taking part in the final.
"Miss Great Britain really does attract an eclectic mix of independent and empowered women who work together to help build the brand and various amazing causes."
The event this year supported two charities, Cancer Research UK and Midlands-based Alex's Wish - which helps raise funds to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy - and collected a staggering £42,000 for these worthy causes.
In the past eight years, Kate and her team have changed the ruling to allow married women and mothers to enter. This year, a new division open to women aged 28 and above was introduced.
Featured Image Credit: MEN Media