Morecambe transplant teen’s beauty boost

Rachel Simpson, in her eco dress made from old Visitor newspapers with last year's Miss Junior North West. Picture by www.kevwisephotography.co.uk.
Rachel Simpson, in her eco dress made from old Visitor newspapers with last year's Miss Junior North West. Picture by www.kevwisephotography.co.uk.

A brave teen who had a bone marrow transplant is showing girls can be beautiful with or without hair at the finals of a beauty competition.

Rachel Simpson, from Morecambe, strutted her best outfits on the catwalk of Junior Miss Lancashire, including rounds with and without her wig.

The 16-year-old is recovering from life-saving surgery after being diagnosed with a mutated GATA2 gene.

The rare genetic condition would have led to leukaemia, a form of blood cancer which can kill.

The competition included a sportswear round, evening wear, party wear and an eco round, a dress which she made from old Visitor newspapers.

Rachel came fifth out of 20 finalists across the region and although she didn’t take the crown home she is now through to the finals of Miss Preston.

Mum Donna Simpson is “immensely proud.”

Donna said: “The day was lovely and she made some great friends but it was a long day, it completely wiped her out.

“But she is raising money and also making people aware that you don’t have to have hair to be beautiful.

“The eco dress was the hardest thing!

“We paper mached an exercise ball, so the skirt is made from Visitor’s and she went with the movie theme of Alice in Wonderland.”

Rachel said: “It was such a fun day, a real confidence boost.

“ I was tired because I think I did a little too much dancing!”

There was also a round for the most likes on Facebook and most money raised for the competition’s chosen charity, the Variety Children’s charity.

Rachel raised £300 for the charity.