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Beauty Queen or Bust

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From Blackpool to Hull and Wolverhampton an exploration of the world of regional beauty pageants, charting the highs and lows of being a beauty queen

About the Show

From Blackpool to Hull and Wolverhampton an exploration of the world of regional beauty pageants, charting the highs and lows of being a beauty queen

Series 1 Summary

The glitz and glamour of Miss World has to start somewhere. Each year regional heats take place in ordinary towns and cities across England. This three-part series follows some of the young entrants hoping to make it through the regional pageants in Blackpool, Hull and Wolverhampton.

  • Episode 1 - Miss Black Country

    Three entrants to the Miss Black Country elimination round are put through a rigorous round of challenges to see if they have what it takes to win the coveted crown. There're interviews, bootcamp and catwalk.

    Wolverhampton, Walsall and Dudley used to be powerhouses of industry, but, after decades of decline, the Black Country region has the country's highest rate of unemployment, particularly among women.

    Eighteen-year-old Diamond was kicked out of school for 'being naughty' and now worries about ever finding a job. As the beauty competition progresses, will she have the self-control that it takes to get to the final?

    Sammy Jo has been unemployed for the past two years and lives in a hostel with other jobless teenagers. Surviving on the dole is a constant struggle, especially with the added pressure to have perfect hair, makeup and dresses for the pageant.

    Nineteen-year-old Natalie has a long list of places that have refused her work - from a job packing frozen chickens, to a role as one of Santa's elves. She's decided to take matters in to her own hands and, with the profits of her fledgling mobile hair extension business, is saving to buy the perfect pageant dress.

  • Episode 2 - Miss Hull

    Fish factory worker Lacy is stuck in a job that she can't wait to escape from. She's got the looks, but can she overcome her insecurities and the temptations of Hull's nightlife?

    Kiem is 17 and left school with no GCSEs. She now works part-time in a local chip shop - but it's definitely not where she wants to end her days.

    Twenty-year-old Lauren left school to train as a fire-fighter. But this didn't work out and now she dreams of becoming a successful businesswoman. But as one of the most inexperienced of the entrants, she has a lot to learn about getting to the top.

  • Episode 3 - Miss Fylde Coast

    Out of work party girl Tasha believes that beauty beats brains in Blackpool and sees the Miss Fylde Coast regional heat of Miss England as her meal ticket to a better life. But can she show the strict self-control required to be a beauty queen and resist the temptations of the town's night life?

    Jo-Ellen is 16. She dropped out of school a couple of years ago. Heavy drinking has taken its toll on her. She also had to care for her mum after she suffered a series of strokes.

    Can this unlikely beauty queen and self-confessed tomboy put the past behind her and make it all the way to the final?

Beauty Queen or Bust synopsis

From Blackpool to Hull and Wolverhampton an exploration of the world of regional beauty pageants, charting the highs and lows of being a beauty queen

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3 Episodes