Racier 'Calendar Girls' bare a little too much for locals
After the success of the film Calendar Girls, it was perhaps inevitable that some people would decide to take the idea to the next level.So when the women of Castleside in the Durham Dales got together to raise funds for their crumbling community hall, they were not quite as intent on protecting their modesty as the Rylstone Women's Institute in North Yorkshire had been.
While the original calendar girls used strategically positioned cakes to keep things as respectable as possible, the Castleside women had a little more on show in their version.
In one shot, 10 of them pose naked on hay bales, while in another, a local beautician, the parish council clerk and a sales rep run hand-in-hand across a cornfield, their bottoms fully bared.
Spurred on by the unkind suggestion by some members of their village hall committee that donors might be pay more to see them keep their clothes on, they rounded up would-be models of all ages in their bid to save the 100-year-old hall.
Heather Thompson, 45, who organised the Castleside Calendar, told the Daily Mail: 'The original Calendar Girls calendar is lovely but they are hiding behind their buns.
“We are in for a penny, in for a pound and it is all out there. It is more Geordie than North Yorkshire in that respect.”
Miss Thompson’s idea was initially rejected at the hall’s committee meeting, but she was undeterred.
“It made me quite annoyed,” she said. “I was so determined, I literally went out that night and knocked on people's doors to ask them if they were willing to do it.
“I was amazed how many people said "Yes", even though we didn't know each other.”
With the help of a local photographer, who offered her services free of charge, and the donations of well-wishers, the £10 calendar was published.
Sadie Ayton, 76, was the oldest of the group to strip for the cause.
She said: “My wedding reception was held in the village hall, so I knew I had to do something. First of all, I thought it was just sponsoring them.
“Then they asked me to take my clothes off. I am naked when I go to bed each night anyway, so I thought, ‘Why not?’”