A Preston beauty queen appeared on ITV’s Granada Reports this week to warn about rogue modelling agencies.
Mary-Kate McKay, 23, said many young people were being conned out of money for fruitless photo shoots.
She is the current Miss Lancashire and deputy Miss England but took to the news broadcast to warn others of a scam she nearly fell victim to.
Mary-Kate,23, told how after being crowned as this year’s Miss Lancashire event she started looking for a modelling agency.
“I found it quite challenging,” she said. “After filling in loads of application forms and getting lots of rejections, I finally got a positive response, but it turned out to be a scam.
“I was really excited when I finally got a really positive reply from a firm telling me that I was exactly what they wanted.
“They told me that they would be sending me for a really high-end photo-shoot, and that if I didn’t respond there and then, I would miss the opportunity, which terrified me.
“But a couple of days before the shoot, my mum came across a website highlighting all the rogue modelling agencies. Unfortunately, the company that was putting me forward for the high-profile photo-shoot was top of the list.
“It turned out that I would have had to pay for the photos, which can cost thousands of pounds. I discovered that they would have told me that if I didn’t buy the photos, I would never make it in the industry. When I realised that it was a scam, I was devastated.”