Spotlight on Angie Beasley
I’ve been organising modelling & beauty competitions for both men and women since 1988. I started off in the early 1980s entering competitions myself! My confidence grew, I made lots of friends and eventually won a few regional competitions (25 to be exact). I was offered a job for a leisure company as a promotions manager. At the time I was living in Leeds and I was the reigning Miss Leeds Metro. I trained with Mecca to learn how to organise events such as competitions, this is the best thing I ever did. One of the events I co-organised in 1988 was a regional heat for Miss England in 1988! I also organised dancing competitions, learnt how to host events and organised Pete Watermans 1980s Hit Man & Her TV show to visit, giving the club national publicity on the show.
I met a man in the events business then moved to Leicester. It didn’t work out so I started organising a local Miss Leicester contest and sent my winner to the national final of Miss UK in 1990. At the time Miss UK went to Miss World. Having come out of a bad personal relationship, I threw myself into work and wanted to make new friends and contacts. I then ran Miss UK for 3 years in the mid-1990s for the late Eric Morley at Miss World. I had a maternity break with my son and then became the organiser of Miss England in 2002.
My biggest challenge is trying to find sponsors to invest in the contest. We have a lot of product sponsors who give gifts to contestants but I'm always looking for financial sponsors to help make the contest final more exciting and financially viable. It's hard work even though the contest has moved with the times. We have a sports round and a talent round along with the Eco and fundraising Beauty with a Purpose rounds and we don’t parade women in swimwear anymore. This year due to international travel restrictions, I've introduced a new round called “Explore the nation” which is promoting tourism in England in association with UK Staycations! The competition attracts thousands of women aged 16+ and now we have an app we are able to reach lots more people. But I'm always looking for more sponsors who would like to reach thousands of women with their brand!
I've been lucky enough to have “Mauritius Tourism” as my destination sponsor most years since 2012 (with the exception of 2015 when Sri Lanka came on board). I've always done my best to give sponsors as much exposure as possible with the events both on social media and our website, I always had their promotional banners around for the contestants to be photographed against. Miss England and I have been lucky enough to be invited to visit a luxury destination every year which I believe is a fantastic opportunity for any youngster.
What is an important initiative that you feel passionate about in your role?
Introducing and highlighting the importance of recycling to contestants which I still do. I introduced the Ethical Fashion round to Miss England in 2007 by making it into a round in the contest called “Miss Eco”. This idea came from me not being able to afford new clothing as I was growing up. I'm the eldest of 5 children and didn’t get my first new dress until I was 14. We always shopped in 2nd hand shops or were given clothing to wear by family or friends.
I now encourage the contestants in the contest to create an outfit for this round using recycled materials/clothing who then take part in a catwalk show. It doesn’t matter what background the contestants are from, everyone has the chance to show their creative and ethical side. This year, the Ethical Fashion contest is sponsored by Plastfree, a Plastic Free Sanitary pads company. I'm also encouraging this year's contestants to become local ambassadors for WASUP ( World Against Single-Use Plastic).
Drive and determination
I come from a humble background and we couldn’t afford much. I'd never been abroad until I was 17. I also like a challenge and I like creating an idea and turning it into a reality.
Three tips you give to those starting their careers
Try to be the best version of yourself, listen to advice.
Always be kind to people, both on social media and off.
Stay humble and kind to people, never forget how you started and don’t take anything for granted.
Advice to those who are wanting to start a business
It's easy to start your own business these days with the use of social media and websites. My advice is to try and be unique. Think of something that will make you stand out and be different from the rest, no matter what you are planning to do.
Advice for people aiming for leadership positions
Work hard, dream big and show loyalty and commitment. You will get there in the end if you really want it.
The best and worst part of your job
The best part of my job is meeting so many inspiring people from all walks of life. I meet new people every day, albeit virtually at the moment! The worst part is working on a computer for hours on end and I feel sometimes I haven't achieved as much as I would have liked to. It's also not good for your posture hunched over a desk all the time!
I now have 44 Miss England national finalists, most of whom have been selected virtually, all ready to take part in a big summer final event on the 27th of August. Everyone is raring to go out, dress up and have an excuse to look glam. With the media coverage we have had even during the pandemic by continuing with the competition virtually, I'm hoping this year's Miss England final will be one of the most glamorous memorable events of the year!
Tickets are limited for the red carpet style event which includes a sit-down dinner and entertainment from Ruby Lemon at the Heart of England Conference Centre in Coventry and available by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website to watch our Livestream events over the summer for the different rounds the First one is going out on the 24th June on here.