BIG is beautiful, says Hannah Goble.
And on Saturday the 22-year-old will be hoping the judges agree she is the most beautiful of them all.
Hannah, who grew up in Milton before moving to Brighton for university, is one of the finalists in the Miss Plus Size International competition.
It is only open to people who wear a size 18 or above, and its aim is to ‘celebrate the beauty of size’ and to ‘prove that there is life after size 18’.
Hannah, who now lives in Worthing, said she was inspired to take part after watching a television show called Britain’s Biggest Beauty Queens this time last year.
She said: ‘I saw it and thought I’d love to enter, looked it up and saw there was only a week left to enter.
‘I had to send in a few photos, write about why I wanted to be in the competition.’
And Hannah had a simple reason for wanting to take part.
She said: ‘It was a good way to show I’m not ashamed of my body and no matter what size I am I can pursue any path in life I want.’
Hannah says having a pageant celebrating overweight people is not about promoting an unhealthy way of living, and says she has not been criticised for her weight.
She said: ‘I’ve never had anyone saying I’m unhealthy. I’ve done musical theatre and I’ve always been on stage dancing and performing, and I can stand on stage and do a 10-minute dance routine like someone who weighs eight stone.
‘Some of the other girls have had harsh comments about it.
Hannah was initially one of 1,000 entrants whittled down to 100 on a short list invited to go to a rigorous day of interviews in London.
She said: ‘We had to take part in a pageant, answer a few questions. Some were sent home but I was called back for an individual interview.
‘I was a bit shocked I got through.’
She found out in February that she had made the final shortlist of 35 finalists, and has had to wait until now to finally prepare for the ceremony.
She said: ‘It’s been a whirlwind since then. I’ve set up a Facebook page, we went to a boot camp in Somerset in the summer and we’ve been given confidence training.
‘I’ve learned that I can do anything I want to now, regardless of my size.’