Boston-area professional mermaid claims European pageant title

A ‘mermaid’ from the Boston area has made a splash in an international pageant, swimming off with a top honour.

Laura, during the National Costume round, wearing a replica of the Queen's Coronation gown (which she made herself). Picture: Adam Hornsby

Laura Hudson, 31, of Donington, represented the UK in the first Miss Ocean World competition, held virtually at the end of 2020.

She was one of 12 contestants from around the world taking part in the event, billed as a celebration of beauty, intelligence and female empowerment, underpinned by a message of pollution-free oceans.

Rounds ran as follows: Introduction, Bikini, Talented, National Custom, Evening Gown and Final Speech, with members of the public helping shape the results through online votes.

Another shot of the National Costume submission. Picture: Adam Hornsby

At the end of the month-long process, Laura was crowned Miss Ocean World Europe, finishing third runner-up overall. Alongside this, she was named winner in the Talented sub-category for her pole dancing routine.

She said she was ‘thrilled’ with the result, posting to her followers online: “I threw my heart and soul into this the past few months, and I could not have possibly done any more.”

This, however, is not Laura’s first title-winning success in a pageant. In 2018, the fashion graduate was named Miss Mermaid UK after beating off competition from 18 other British hopefuls (as we reported here); rounds there included underwater photoshoots and a 75m distance swim in costume.

Today, Laura works as a professional mermaid performer (alongside some other, non-aquatic roles such as a sewing teacher and Bikeability instructor).

A still from Laura's pole dancing routine that saw her win the Talented round. Picture: Laura Siddall

This part of her life came to the fore in the Miss Ocean World competition, as she was able to talk about she has used the role to promote efforts to cut marine pollution.

With her new title, Laura has been invited to compete at another Miss Ocean World pageant in India later this year (providing it is allowed to go ahead).

In a separate development, she has chosen to take on the role of UK national director for the competition, meaning she will oversee future British representation.

In addition, she says the ‘green’ campaigning will continue – for example, she has launched her own range of environmentally friendly products on her Esty shop, starting with reusable face wipes.

The Bikini round. Picture: Adam Hornsby

“I am excited to be able to use my new title to drive this forward, to help people make small changes in their way of living to help make a bigger difference as a ‘green’ community,” she said.

The Evening Gown round. Picture: Adam Hornsby