BRAVE women and one man took to the catwalk to raise money for a breast cancer charity.

Thirty-five models who have all been affected by the disease took part in the fundraising Blossom Fashion Show in Leeds in aid of Breast Cancer Haven, Yorkshire.

Hundreds of guests turned up to help them raise more than £28,500 for the charity in an emotionally charged event in March at the Queens Hotel.

The eighth Blossom Fashion Show was aimed not only at raising money but also at empowering the models who took part.

A spokeswoman for the charity said: “The thirty-five models involved in this year’s Blossom Fashion Show have all had experience of breast cancer and accessed the charity’s free support. Breast Cancer Haven is the charity that supports people through their breast cancer treatment. When breast cancer tries to rob a person of their individuality, confidence or strength, they provide a tailored package of emotional, physical and practical support that helps to hold on to them.”

This year was the first time a male visitor to Breast cancer Haven took to the catwalk to increase awareness of breast cancer in men - and his appearance was met with a surge of support from the audience .

Models wore clothes from both national and local retailers including John Lewis, Anthropologie, Swanky Pants, Diva Classic Ladieswear, Up & Running, Marks & Spencer, Georgie’s, Cordings, Rigby & Peller and Maid to Fit.

The event was compered by BBC Radio Leeds presented Liz Green. Guests enjoyed two performances on the day from Julia Martin as both Dolly Parton and Tina Turner as well as lunch and a luxury auction.

The models were supported by their friends, families and colleagues as well as some famous faces including, Billy Pearce, Kay Mellor, Emmerdale’s Gaynor Faye, Amy Walsh and Michelle Hardwick.

Breast Cancer Haven Manager, Debra Horsman, said: “This year’s Blossom Fashion Show was monumental and pivotal for increasing awareness of breast cancer in men as well as women. All models were inspirational, and we were overwhelmed with the support we received on the day. I would like to thank everyone for their generosity.”

One of the models taking part was Brenda Jackson, from Guiseley.

She said: “I first became a visitor at Breast Cancer Haven in 2013 when I was diagnosed with secondary breast cancer. The minute I walked in I felt the warmth and caring nature of the people there. Following a chat with Debra Horsman I was offered various therapies. I experienced acupuncture, counselling and had advice from Breast Cancer Haven’s herbal and nutrition experts. Hypnotherapy and reflexology with Jean was, and in fact still is, brilliant and helped me greatly to cope with the diagnosis and living with it.

“Taking part in the Breast Cancer Haven Blossom Fashion Show is an amazing experience. This year was my fifth time on the catwalk. I’m no model but we are guided through our routines very well. Its great fun and I have made new friends. I am personally grateful to my family for their support in encouraging me to model – they find it very inspirational. My granddaughter, Molly, would love me to model swimwear but I think that’s a step too far for me!

“I feel it has been a privilege to take part in the Blossom Fashion Show for two reasons. Firstly it is saying to everyone ‘hey look – there is life after a breast cancer diagnosis’, the ladies, and one man this year, are so inspirational and amazing. Secondly, it raises awareness of Breast Cancer Haven, the fantastic help they offer, and also raises must needed funds, as they rely on donations and fund-raising to carry out their valuable work.”

The money raised will enable the centre, based in Leeds City Centre, to continue offering free support to anyone affected by breast cancer.

For more information about Breast Cancer Haven, Yorkshire, contact the team on 0113 284 7829 or email to hear more about events taking place in the region.