Police probe 'all ages' model advert

A POLICE investigation has been launched after a notice urging girls of “all ages” to call a telephone number for glamour modelling work was displayed in a newsagents frequented by schoolchildren.

By Danielle Nuttall

A POLICE investigation has been launched after a notice urging girls of “all ages” to call a telephone number for glamour modelling work was displayed in a newsagents frequented by schoolchildren.

The typed notice appears in the window of Balfour News Ltd in Woodbridge Road East, Ipswich, and asks girls with a “good figure and a pretty face” to call either a mobile or landline telephone number.

The advert says beginners will be paid at an hourly rate of £25-£30 but there is no mention of a business name or a named individual.


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When the East Anglian Daily Times telephoned the landline number, we were met with an answering machine message of a man's voice asking to leave a number.

The notice has appalled parents who say the row of shops that includes Balfour News is a meeting place for schoolchildren from nearby St Albans High School and Copleston High School.

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They fear something more sinister could be behind the message.

Police are now investigating and a spokeswoman for Suffolk police said: “We can confirm it has been reported to us and we are aware and we are looking into it.”

The headline of the notice reads: “Models wanted” and goes on to say that all types of glamour work are available. It is not known who placed the notice.

A worried parent, who has three young girls, said: “Hundreds of schoolchildren go past there. We are extremely concerned. It says females wanted at any age, what does that mean?

“You see on the television that all these people are putting things on trains and you start to think about what an advert like that could mean.”

Shy Keenan, chief advocate of Phoenix Survivors, a support group set up for the victims of child sexual abuse, said: “I think it's inappropriate to put such an advert in the eye line of children, especially vulnerable school-aged children. It's an extremely irresponsible thing to do.

“The newsagents ought to know better. That sort of ad should be put at the back of magazines. There are children who are vulnerable and do not know if they're putting themselves into danger.

“If it's a legitimate organisation, why isn't there a business address?

“I'm pleased that the police are investigating. I would like to know more about this individual and see why girls of all ages are underlined. That gives the impression girls of all ages can apply.”

A spokeswoman for the Co-operative Group, which owns the Balfour News chain, said last night: “The store manager normally monitors any advertisements that go on the community notice board in the shop.

“However, on this occasion, a new member of staff accepted the notice when the store manager was not there. Regrettably, neither the manager or any other staff member noticed the content of the advertisement otherwise it would have been removed.

“It was the police who brought it to the manager's attention. We do apologise for not living up to our usual standards on this occasion and staff have now been informed that no notices can be accepted without the manager's permission. We are taking this matter very seriously and can assure local people that such a situation will not occur again.”

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