Former Miss Newcastle and Miss Great Britain Sophie Gradon heading for Love Island
Love Island is back on our screens next week and a former Miss Newcastle and Miss Great Britain is looking to make a splash on the famous ITV dating show.
The series, hosted by former X Factor presenter Caroline Flack, made a much heralded return to our screens for the first time in almost a decade last year and a summer of love is being teased as it gets ready to air once again on itv2 from Monday, May 30.
Last year Tyneside was represented by model and nightclub promoter Chris Williamson and the Geordie flag will be flown in the new run by Sophie Gradon, who won both Miss Newcastle and Miss Great Britain in 2009.
The now 30 year old, who now works as a marketing manager, hit the headlines a year later when 65 years of pageant tradition was broken after she failed to pass on her Miss Great Britain crown at a ceremony in Somerset.
She was banned from attending because of a row over a train fine.
Sophie was also in the tabloids in 2013 thanks to her relationship with rugby star Danny Cipriani, also famous for going out with model and TV personality Kelly Brook.
Speaking about the relationship in an interview for Love Island, Sophie said: “Suddenly I was in the papers being called a ‘Kelly Brook lookalike’, which is nice, as she’s stunning!
“My relationship with Danny was intense. I fell in absolute lust with him. He bowled me over with charm. He’s a very special man. You fall completely in love with him, and I did.”
Sophie added that her party trick is that she can ”drink a lot,” joking: “I’m a Geordie. I wish I could do the splits or get my leg over my head but no, my party trick is just doing shots.”
Sophie isn’t the only Miss Great Britain heading into the Love Island villa. Among the other girls lined up for the show is current champion Hull’s Zara Holland.
The men vying for their affections include Scott Thomas, a 27 year old entrepreneur and club promoter from Manchester, 24 year old Welsh barman and fitness instructor Tom Powell, Nathan Massey, also 24, a carpenter from Essex and Javi Shephard, a 27 year old surveyor from York.
As befits the format of the show, viewers could be treated to mystery contestants being added at any stage to even out the numbers.
The final couple left in the villa will win a £50,000 cash prize.