Scooped! The first page 3 girl dressed

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The Independent Online
The Independent scoops the Daily Star and the Sun today by becoming the first British newspaper to print pictures of a page three girl suitably attired for a winter afternoon in London, writes Rob Brown.

Melinda Messenger agreed to don a wax jacket and pose outside a hotel where she has been based since she was brought to the capital by The Sun.

She admitted that she didn't know if her fame was going to last 15 minutes or 15 years. "But I'd certainly like to have a long-term relationship with The Sun."

Was the 22-year-old from Swindon praying for superstardom when she slipped into daring lingerie to promote a local double-glazing firm on bus shelters?

"I've always been an optimist and I do hope for the best things in life, but I was aware that there was only a one in a million chance of anything coming of it."

And how did she feel being interviewed by one of the broadsheets?

"It's all very encouraging from my point of view that people are interested and want to find out more about me. But my brain is full to capacity at the moment with everything that's been happening to me. After a very thrilling few days I probably need time to assimilate it all and get back on an even keel."

Having gone to London on Tuesday morning thinking she was only lined up for a one-day shoot, she was eager last night to get back to her boyfriend Wayne, a 21-year-old production supervisor with EMI, whom she plans to marry in June. "Yes obviously he's going to have to make some adjustments if this carries on at this level, but he has full trust in me and confidence in my decision-making.

"It's certainly different from what I've been used to. I'm always expecting someone to put up and say: `It's only Melinda. Send her home to Swindon!'"