Last year we spoke to Lucie Richardson, a waitress and zumba instructor, who was competing in the longest reigning beauty pageant in the UK, Miss Great Britain. After getting through to the finals again, we decided to catch up with Lucie to see what’s changed since we last spoke.
When we last spoke to Lucie she had only been in the pageant world a matter of months, since then a lot has changed but she admits, “I can’t believe how quickly the time has gone!” After the last interview, Lucie had just competed in Miss Great Britain 2016. She tells us “[she] had such an amazing time [she] applied again for this year’s competition and won the title of Miss Portsmouth 2017!” Lucie gushes, “I feel so honoured to be a part of the Miss GB experience again for a second year!”
Speaking to the mother of two about her experiences in the pageant last year she goes on, “I made so many good friends and the experience of the final itself was so empowering for me!” In regards to her competition, it’s clear that there was no bad blood, “There was no feeling of being judged by each other or competitiveness at all between the girls.” According to Lucie there was nothing but love for her fellow Miss GB contestants, “We all really built each other’s confidence up and supported each other the whole way through – it was really lovely” she adds.
Exciting times ahead ❤ Thank you so much to my amazing sponsors The Circle Brighton and Bomboutique ❤ I can’t wait to start working with you guys!! The Circle is a fantastic health and fitness venue in Portslade offering a huge spectrum of different classes at an incredibly affordable price for everyone!! They also have an amazing cafe which offers a selection of yummy but healthy food and drink for you after your workout to refuel your body exercise and nutrition is obviously a big passion of mine so I’m very excited to start working with these guys to promote health and wellbeing in our community ❤ Bomboutique is a new brand which offers a selection of shapewear for women including underwear, tips and jeans with more being added in soon!! the material is one of a kind and the products do the job of top waist trainers but with sooooo much more comfort and so much easier to wear I’m so excited to show you all their fab products!! This brand strives to help make women feel more confident everyday and I’m excited to be a part of it Watch this space everyone….. #missgb #missportsmouth #begreat #bomboutique #thecirclebrighton #confidence #missgbfamily #missgreatbritain
On how she felt when she found out she had gotten through to compete again this year, Lucie says “I was obviously very excited!” whilst acknowledging her position of fortune too, “I feel very privileged! I have so many ideas in my head that I can do now with the platform…”
When it comes to priorities, it’s clear where Lucie’s lie when I ask her what it would mean for her to win the title, “It really would mean so much to me to have a year of having the most prestigious title and an incredible platform to be able to be the role model that I strive to be for younger girls and women and help certain charities be heard with the help of my voice as Miss Great Britain”.
As Lucie prides herself on setting a good example for young women around the UK, I question what she might say to those who would argue that beauty pageants of this nature are unfeminist. She responds confidently, “People don’t understand beauty pageants these days – a lot has changed!” She goes on, “You are not judged just on the way you look but the way you are as a person, your personality, your mind and how you want to make a difference.” Lucie is very clear on stressing the emphasis that it’s all about being yourself. On the topic of the controversial bikini rounds, Lucie says “People always say to me about the bikini round and ask me how I feel about it. And I say ‘fine!’ It’s no different to the other rounds and it’s about all us girls, no matter what shape or size, showing that you should be confident no matter what you look like!” She finishes her response by quoting Ariana Grande, “We are not objects or prizes. We are QUEENS”.
Returning to her experience in the competition last year, Lucie claims “I put a lot of pressure on myself last year and for some reason wasn’t myself”. She recalls, “All the other girls embraced their different qualities but I let my nerves get to me on stage”. Lucie acknowledges that when you want something so badly it’s easy to try to put on a show, but that’s something that she hopes to change this year.
#throwback to one of the most fun and scary times of my life!! Missing all the girls lots!!!!!❤ #missgb #classof2016 #missgreatbritain #missbrighton #misspublicity #eveningwear #bikini #red #mum #zumba
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I ask Lucie what advice she may give to other young girls hoping to pursue a similar path, to which she responds excitedly “Go for it! You get so much from it, you learn a lot about yourself”. She continues, “Be yourself! …Because that’s what makes you different which makes you beautiful”.
It’s clear that things have changed a lot for Lucie this past year due to the Miss GB pageant, “I’ve learnt how to accept myself and love myself for who I am”. Showing her female solidarity yet again she continues, “I’ve learnt what an impact it can make when women come together and work with each other and support each other, rather than against each other.” Offering some sage advice she says, “If you believe in yourself, work hard and never give up you can get anywhere you want in life! Never let anyone tell you otherwise!”
Lastly, I ask Lucie what she might say to other young boys and girls who are facing similar issues to those she faced when she was younger, in terms of mental health and eating disorders, “You’re not alone and there is always someone out there going through the same thing and others who have been through the same thing as you.” She sympathises, “You just need to talk to someone as scary as it may seem I promise you you will not be judged you just need to know you’re not alone and you need to ask for help”.
The Miss Great Britain Grand Final will take place across Thursday 14th and Friday 15th September 2017 at the Athena in Leicester. Lucie, who was crowned Miss Portsmouth 2017 will be competing on the 15th.
You can follow Lucie on Instagram here for updates.
To read our interview with Lucie last year click here.