In 2006 the members of Rosemarkie WRI decided to emulate the members of Rylstone WI, Yorkshire, by producing a calendar, and the article, below, is by courtesy of the author, Jane Candlish of The Press and Journal, and photographer Phil Downie.
Members of Rosemarkie WRI have followed in the footsteps of the women made famous by Helen Mirren and Julie Walters, by posing naked for a charity calendar.
The twelve ladies, the oldest aged 77, have been snapped in their birthday suits after being inspired by Rylstone Women’s Institute in Yorkshire, who made headlines by stripping off in 2000.
Their story was later turned into a million pound movie, starring actresses including Celia Imrie and Annette Crosby.
Like the original Calendar Girls, the Rosemarkie ladies used a selection of household items to protect their modesty.
As well as poses to mark St Valentine’s Day and Hallowe’en, the women were photographed playing golf, baking cakes and arranging flowers.
The December snap features the twelve members wearing only their pearls and a Santa Hat.
President Edith Grigor, who will appear in the calendar as Miss May, said the idea developed as part of the group’s annual show of work.
Mrs Grigor, of Corslet Farm, said: “We like to try and attract people into the show by giving them a bit extra. In the past we have put on a fashion show and on another occasion we stripped down to reveal big knickers and huge vests.
“But this time one of our members, Betty Hiddleston, said we should do a remake of Calendar Girls.”
So, for this year’s coffee evening, the group put on a live show and posed naked in front of an audience, including local residents and two church ministers.
Afterwards the ladies decided to pose again for a photographer and turn the shots into a caledar for next year.
It is hoped the calendar will be on the shelves of local shops by the end of the year.
Mrs Grigor said: “But, of course, we didn’t take our clothes off. We have tried to create the illusion that we are naked by using items to cover us.
“We have a combined age of 876, but no one was nervous about stripping off.”
She added: “We knew some people would not approve but we haven’t done anything immoral. It’s all good fun.
“Everyone seems to be really positive about it and I have heard nothing derogatory about what we did.”
[Article courtesy of the author, Jane Candlish of The Press and Journal, and photographer Phil Downie.]