The grandfather cast in the role of Mr February

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The Independent Online
HE'S A 60-year-old grandfather and part-time caravan enthusiast, but Alan Beecroft is about to break into the big time as Mr February, the angling pin-up from the Real Yorkshire Millennium Man calendar.

The calendar, a riposte to the Women's Institute of Skipton who, four months ago, bared all in the cause of charity, features a selection of male caravanners, aged between 35 and 70. The Yorkshiremen say they wanted to "show the WI how it's done".

Many of the men's wives did not know they would be appearing. But they had no difficulty recognising their men. "I'd know that profile anywhere," said Mr Beecroft's wife, Eileen, 63, when she saw the snap of her husband revealing a chink of cheek. .

Mr Beecroft was gratified. "I knew she'd love it," he said. "Everyone thinks it's a giggle and it was fun doing it, although there was a road close to where we took the photos and we had to pray no one would drive along."

A thousand Millennium Men calendars are being printed and sold for pounds 5 each. The money will go to the Daniel Yorath Appeal for a cardiomyopathy and brain rehabilitation unit in Leeds.

Hilary Haresign, a director of the Maustin Caravan Park at Kearby, West Yorkshire, persuaded the men to take part in the photo shoot . "They are all ages, shapes and sizes and there are no rippling muscles," she said yesterday. "They think `gym' is a man's name."

Staff at the DIY store where Mrs Beecroft works may be taken aback by her husband's performance, but Mr Beecroft is unabashed. "I'm sure they'll get into the spirit of it and have a giggle," he said.

Mr Beecroft is confident that the calendar will adorn the best walls in town. "There will be one in the local chip shop, the chemist and the doctor's surgery wants one."