Looking heavenly! Female vicar swaps dog collar for party dress after losing 21lbs and winning makeover in slimming magazine
Reverend Carol Hayden, 48, astonished parishioners in Radcliffe Parish Church, Greater Manchester
10:57 GMT, 15 November 2012
Reverend Carol Hayden's parishioners hardly recognised her when they saw the photographs.
Not only had the super-slimming vicar shrunk by 21lbs, she had also swapped her traditional dog collar for a stunning purple party dress, her neat bob for cascading curls and her minimal make-up for a professional touch-up.
The 48-year-old blond head of Radcliffe Parish Church in Greater Manchester had won a makeover competition in Weight Watchers magazine, then brought the photographic evidence of her transformation into church to show her congregation the results.
Before and after: Mrs Hayden submitted a photograph of herself outside her church, left, to win the makeover in Weight Watchers magazine, right
To enter the competition, Mrs Hayden had to explain, in 25 words or less, why she deserved a makeover. She wrote: 'As a busy vicar wearing clericals all the time, it would be heavenly to be pampered for the day.'
She also submitted a photograph of her outside the church, in Church Green, in her robes and was chosen as the winner.
Mrs Hayden underwent a makeover, chose the Kate Fearnley dress, and received a champagne lunch and a goody bag of chocolate, champagne and treats.
Heavenly: Mrs Hayden underwent a makeover, chose the Kate Fearnley dress, and received a champagne lunch and a goody bag of chocolate, champagne and treats
'It was lovely to wear something different and it's a really pretty dress. My daughter is getting married next year and I'm going to wear the dress then.
'I was delighted to win. I was shocked because I never win anything. Then
I panicked because as a vicar, I'm quite a public figure, but the
congregation were delighted. They have all been really excited about
their vicar looking glamorous.'
The photographs will appear in the magazine, but Mrs Hayden brought them in to church on Sunday to give her parishioners a sneak preview.
She said: 'They think they're
lovely. They said it's the first time they have seen my legs!'
She has lost 21lbs since May, when she joined the Weight Watchers group at Radcliffe United Reformed Church run by Claire Benson.
She started dieting to ease arthritis in her knee, and the health fanatic now runs and does Muay Thai boxing.
Before the makeover: Mrs Hayden, 48, started dieting to ease arthritis in her knee, and the health fanatic now runs and does Muay Thai boxing