A former insurance adviser called 'freckle face' and 'ginger nut' at school has been crowned Britain And Ireland's Next Top Model. Jade Thompson, 20, from Stoke-on-Trent, was ridiculed by other school pupils because of her distinctive looks. But she has now secured a contract with agency Models 1, and a deal to grace four covers of Company magazine. Jade, who beat thousands of other hopefuls on the Sky Living HD show, said she "never imagined" getting so far in the modelling competition and that jibes had affected her confidence. She said: "At school I got called things like 'freckle face' and 'ginger nut'. It became really hurtful ... I started to wish I'd never had freckles. "People would even stop and stare at me in the street. But after leaving school, I started to like having ginger hair and freckles." She said: "It was quite refreshing that the make-up artist (on the programme) liked my freckles and wanted to keep them on show." Jade said it made her angry that people with ginger hair get a hard time, saying: "It's just another hair colour after all and I don't understand why it's a big deal." She beat runner-up Juste Juozapaityte, 20, from London, in a catwalk show final, judged by Australian supermodel Elle Macpherson and fashion designer Julien Macdonald among others. Jade, who has posed in underwater and nude shots for the Sky show, was spotted by scouts for the programme at the Britain's Next Top Model Live event last year. Elle said that Jade's distinctive look was to her advantage. "When we met Jade, she said we wouldn't meet anyone like her and she was right," she said. SUBSCRIBE to TV Times magazine NOW and you could save up to 29%
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Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix.
An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.