This weekend, dozens of women will compete for the Miss Transgender UK crown.
For the first time on Sunday, London will host Miss Transgender UK, a pageant for transgender women. The competition, which will take place at EGG Nightclub in north London, is the brainchild of Rachael Bailey, a head chef and hospitality supervisor in Cardiff.
“Isn’t it about time we were noticed and accepted?” she wrote on the event website. “It’s up to us to show the UK that we’re here. We work, live and function as part of society, and as women together we will bring the UK in line with Europe for acceptance and equality for all…We need to see an end to living a life crushed by stealth”.
The pageant had five different heats across the UK, and the winners from each will be competing for the ultimate title of Ms Transgender UK. Each contest consisted of three parts: a question-and-answer session, a talent showcase and a formalwear catwalk.
Here, we meet Natasha Scott, who is entering the competition in Brighton.
She recently returned to university after a career in the civil service, following a breakdown before starting her transition from male to female. She was apprehensive about competing, but eventually entered because the event is not based on looks, but rather, who would be a good role model.
“This isn’t about me. This is about the community. I hate the thought of future generations going through those feelings that I’ve had to endure,” she says.
“We all know and have experienced the sense of isolation, which so, so many people within the trans community have felt,” she said during the competition.
“What I really love about tonight is not just about raising the awareness, but it’s actually celebrating our community...and it’s one that I love being in.”
In addition to the title, the finalist on Sunday night will go home with £5,000 and a voucher for full gender correction surgery. But according to Bailey, the entire community comes out on top, as some proceeds from all events will be donated to several LGBT charities.
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