Sunday will be a big day for Coral Hopkinson.
Of course, it will be for all of the finalists in the Miss Fylde Coast 2016 competition, but for Coral, being the centre of attention will be extra special.
As she suffers from anxiety, Coral finds activities like standing up onstage in front of hundreds of people a difficult task. But taking part in the beauty pageant, the 18-year-old says, has helped her greatly.
Coral, who works as a photographer with Picento, at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, said she was delighted to get through to the final.
The former Hodgson Academy pupil, of Thornton, said: “I was ecstatic when I found out. I wanted to do it a few years ago, but was doing my GCSEs, so in the end I had to drop out the contest because I just didn’t have time.
“I love everything about the competition, but I think it’s mostly the confidence it gives. I suffer from anxiety, so getting up in front of all those people is quite a big task. But I also love meeting people and raising money for charity.
“We had to do an interview day, where everyone met each other and I made some really good friends. Everyone supports and helps each other.”
Coral has already hosted a fundraising event at Blossom Boutique at Marsh Mill, Thornton, in aid of the contest’s chosen charity, Variety, The Children’s Charity, and a Get Scared For Variety Day at her former school Anchorsholme Academy, with a Halloween theme. Children took part by dressing up and bringing in a donation, a well as helping Coral put together her eco dress for Sunday’s final.
She said: “I’m trying my best to set a good leading example for the Fylde coast and I loved talking to and meeting the pupils. I think it’s important to get children involved in fundraising. I like getting involved with doing things for the local community. The thing I am most looking forward to is seeing the other girls again.”
To support Coral, text Miss FY09 to 63333 or search Facebook for Coral Hopkinson Miss Fylde Coast 2016 Finalist.