December 6 2013 Latest news:
Wednesday, August 21, 2013
It all began when a Gorleston mum-of-three jokingly suggested “let’s get our tops off”.
Hobbyist photographer Angela Buttifant, 42, took some cheeky snaps with friends in barley fields near Corton, and the idea for a naked calendar was sown.
But she did not realise how things would spiral when she told friends the project could raise cash for Cancer Research.
“Most people know someone who has had cancer,” explained Mrs Buttifant, who works as a supply teacher.
In no time at all she had rallied a group of two dozen friends willing to bare their flesh for charity.
And calling themselves the Vintage Belles, they set about finding photoshoot locations that would give the calendar a Great Yarmouth flavour.
The Mercury caught up with the group at the Hippodrome Circus, one of their chosen venues, this week and they have also posed up shots with beach umbrellas off Yarmouth’s Golden Mile.
Lacons Brewery, Grosvenor Casino, Champagne Charlie’s and even Leo’s Ice Cream Parlour at the Pleasure Beach are also set to feature in the calendar.
“It’s just improvisation wherever we go,” said Mrs Buttifant.
She said businesses have been supportive, and her ladies will pose for tasteful photos with feather boas and stockings in a pin-up style.
The most risque pictures - the Calendar Girls scene where they strip off completely - will be taken at a friend’s Gorleston home, where she has a piano.
Mrs Buttifant said the friends - from beauticians to care assistants - live across Yarmouth, Gorleston and Caister and many had met through a shared love of the 1940s and 1950s, attending dance events at the Star Hotel.
They are aged from 21 to in their fifties.
She hopes the calendar will show off some of Yarmouth’s architecture, and wants a collection of photos that show “just a lot of girls having fun together” rather than mirroring the seasons.
And with a smile, she revealed why she picked her unorthodox method of raising cash for charity.
“None of us could jump out of an aeroplane,” she said. “That’s why we’re doing it.”
The calendar is in the early stages of production, and Mrs Buttifant said she would be grateful for any firms to help sponsor printing costs or offers of photoshoot locations.
She is also seeking businesses that can stock the calendar, with all profits going to charity.
To help, call Mrs Buttifant on 01493 601399.