AN ASPIRING model from East Preston has been selected from more than 19,500 entrants to appear in the national finals of a beauty pageant.
Hannah Armstrong, 13, a student at The Angmering School, was ‘stunned’ when she received the news that she had been selected to be a Teen Queen UK finalist.
She was spotted by scouts at a dance event she attended with her Littlehampton-based performing arts group Razzamataz Theatre School, earlier this year.
Hannah’s proud mother Mandy said: “She was stunned into silence when she heard the news. It came as a real surprise.
“But she has been walking around the house grinning like a Cheshire cat ever since.
“I don’t think it’s sunk in yet for her and probably won’t until she is there on the day.”
Hannah’s bid had initially been a disappointing one, having been beaten at the voting stage by other candidates.
However, as the weeks went by more and more girls in her Teen Princess UK category dropped out, eventually giving her a shot at the title.
Mandy said: “It was a difficult stage. She had got to the point where she was totally out of the running.
“So she just thought that there was no chance she would ever make it to the finals.
“It’s come as a really nice surprise.”
The UK’s first teen beauty pageant was launched in the UK in September, 2006. This year’s finals are being held at Alexandra Palace, London, on August 30.
And on August 29 – Hannah’s 14th birthday – she will be involved in a press day at the venue.
Along with other finalists, Hannah will have a day of catwalk training and will model three outfits at the evening show’s grand finale.
Mandy added her ambitious daughter hoped it could lead into a fashion career.
“She has her feet firmly planted and is happy to just get this far,” she said. “But whatever happens, it’ll be a great experience for her.”