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Essex riding girls saddle up for charitable topless calendar

By Brentwood Gazette  |  Posted: October 24, 2012

  • MANE ATTRACTION: One of the shots from the Essex Riding Girls Charity Calendar, which will raise money for Breakthrough Breast Cancer

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TOPLESS horse riders and scantily-clad stable girls – what would the neigh-bours say?

Easy on the eye they might be, but these photographs were not taken at some niche equestrian event for exhibitionists.

They were in fact captured by a professional photographer at a livery yard near Billericay and now take pride of place in a breast cancer charity calendar.

The glossy publication, which is now on sale in Brentwood, was the brainchild of horse-lover Elaine Wernham, a teaching assistant from Stansted Close, Billericay.

Until recently, she kept her trusty steed Fleur, a 21-year-old dark bay Welsh mountain pony, at Botney Hill Farm, in Little Burstead and it was here that she met her fellow calendar models.

Mrs Wernham, 41, a mum-of-two, said: "I lost my mum Joan to breast cancer five years ago and I just feel very passionately that we have to get a cure for this. It affects all ages, not just middle-aged women and if we can't find a cure in my lifetime then I would like it to be in my daughter's lifetime."

So how did it feel to pose au naturel in front of a stranger with a camera?

"We did have some Champagne flowing around the livery yard on the day for a bit of Dutch courage but once you get going you forget you are naked," she said.

Speaking about her fellow models she added: "I am so, so grateful to them all for giving up their time and doing this for me."

The Essex Riding Girls Charity Calendar 2013 was printed by Mrs Wernham's husband David, who runs Quest Printing and Design in Moores Place, Brentwood.

The initial print run was for 100 calendars, at £9.99 with £5 from each sale going to Breakthrough Breast Cancer.

"I have sold 50 alone already but I would like to sell 500," said Mrs Wernham.

The calendar can be bought by visiting Quest or by calling the shop on 01277 222244 or 07774 668 200.

The photoshoot took place at Botney Hill Farm, in Little Burstead on September 9.

The photographer was Paul Jamieson of Crown Street Studios, Brentwood.

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