Chartered accountant who has been helping businesses through the pandemic is crowned the new Miss Gloucester
A chartered accountant who works for one of the county’s biggest and best-known firm’s of business advisershas won the title Miss Gloucester – helped partly by a performance of Adele’s “Someone like you”!
If judges in the competition, which aims to single out role models to the younger generation, had run into any difficulty adding up the scores they needed only have called in the woman who walked off with first place.
Twenty-five-year-old former apprentice Cherrell Ford, who did her A-Levels at Chosen Hill Sixth Form, is also rather good with numbers.
And she is now through to the finals which could see her crowned Miss England.
“I am a chartered accountant at Hazlewoods LLP based in Staverton, Cheltenham and I have been specialising in farms and estates for almost seven years,” she said, the two-year apprenticeship being followed by three years of exams to qualify as a chartered accountant.
A place at university in Bristol had been secured and funding in place (you would not expect anything else from someone destined to help others with their own finances), but the offer of a chance to train with such a well-known company, and get paid, changed her mind.
“Recently my time has been spent supporting businesses through this pandemic both in financial and emotional terms in order to ensure that businesses survive and jobs are retained.
“It is easy for the younger generation to have a misconception of accounting as a career and it is my aim to change this perception.
“I regularly take time out to attend career fayres at local schools, using the time to educate students about the profession itself and the importance of the finance industry, especially at times like these.
“As a young female professional in a male dominated industry, I have learnt the importance of confidence, networking and social skills. It is my goal to be a role model and empower young female professionals whilst increasing their knowledge of the industry.”
The resurgence of apprenticeships and the quality of the training on offer is a message she hopes to get across to those who are told the only option is university.
Ms Ford’s progress through the competition is being sponsored by The Linda Mary Clarke Fund which has been established in memory of Linda Clarke.
Linda is said to have been passionate in her support and encouragement to young women to achieve their potential in pursuing careers within Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM).
“I am beyond grateful to have been crowned Miss Gloucester and cannot wait for the opportunities that will come with it, whether it be fundraising for local charities or further career talks in local schools,” said Ms Ford, whose first job was at Chez Rose in Westgate Street, Gloucester.
“Hopefully I can be a role model for the young girls in Gloucester on their path to being the best versions of themselves.”
As if to underline the mission statement for the modern competition to represent the whole person, the current Miss England who crowned Cherelle Miss Gloucester, Bhasha Mukherjee, is also an NHS doctor.
The new Miss Gloucester won the title after taking part in the recent virtual Miss England semi-final which saw 35 contestants from across the country compete for the chance to represent their home towns and cities in a contest which took place on a platform now familiar to many, Zoom.
Ms Ford is one of 15 contestants who now goes through to the final.
As part of the competition contestants were invited to submit up to three videos including an introduction, a catwalk and a talent video – which is where the Gloucester-born-and-bred winner was able to draw on yet another talent – a grade eight in music.
Her efforts also raised more than £300 for the Miss World charity Beauty with a Purpose.
Hair for the photo shoot shown on these pages was done by Gloucester Docks-based Head Kandy with make up by Badet Maria Giorgiana (pictured above), also available at the salon, and pictures by Gloucestershire’s Sean Smiles Photography.