16 April 1999

YFs TAKESTRIDES DOWNSTYLEST…

LIGHTS, camera, action! Glamour comes to Helmsley Young Farmers Club as UK Style, a BBC Digital tv channel, films in the Yorks town for a new leisure and activity series.

Presented by Ailsa Greenhalgh and Paul Roseby alongside the inimitable Russell Grant and a team of resident experts, Style Street will come from different streets in the UK throughout the series and cover a host of varying lifestyles. The task in hand at Helmsley, amid filming underwear and winkles in the locality, is to make-over Young Farmers Ian Peasdale (19) and Helen Fall (16) for a night at a casino – this years theme for the NFYFC AGM at Bournemouth.

"Club secretary Andrew Carter is to blame as he answered an auditioning advert in the local paper," says club chairman Ian, who got involved because "we thought this would be a good advert for the YFC." He has been in the YFC for six years and is an agricultural engineer. He lives at home on the 77ha (190acre) tenanted High Farm, Pockley, where his father John farms pure bred Suffolks and Rouge lOuest sheep.

Helen, who is an account clerk at Rydale Travel, was introduced to Helmsley YFC two years ago by her 18 year old brother Lee, a gamekeeper, as is his father, on the Reivaulx Estate. "Its good fun at the YFC and there is nothing else for young people to do around here, although most of our 20 – 25 members are juniors as older ones leave the area as careers take off," says Helen.

&#42 Guide dog funds

Last year the club raised £400 for Guide Dogs for the Blind. This year on May 30 theyre holding a sponsored duck race for the Methodist school rooms which is where the club meets each Tuesday at 7.30pm.

After a quick piece of outside filming at Helmsley Abbey to introduce Ian and Helen we move on to the beautifully converted Ryedale Country Lodge, run by Peter and Gerd Handley, up the road at Nunnington. This used to be a railway station on the Gilling and Pickering line until the 60s and now becomes a film set for the day.

Senior hair stylist Carla and assistant Sam, from Saks of York, are ready and waiting for the willing models. Style Street expert Stephen Glass is on hand to make-up and style our duo. Stephen runs Face Facts in Wigmore Street, London and is a dab hand at putting people at ease. He organises a large room for hairdressing and make-over and asks to see the clothes chosen for the occasion – the result of a foray in House of Fraser, Leeds, the previous Saturday.

With the help of a "personal shopping assistant", it took Helen an hour and Ian half the time to get kitted out – except for his shoes. "They couldnt cope with my size 12 feet," he says, but a visit to Dolcis sorted the problem.

Helen chose a black Linea dress £80, gloves £7.50, bag £12, Shawl £15, Tiara £20 and shoes £30. Ians selection came to a white Tuxedo £130 (for the 007 look), trousers £60, shirt £60, cufflinks £10 and a borrowed bow-tie, thank you Peter.

&#42 Washing first

Sam begins washing Helens hair then Carla trims to tidy and balance ready for the hair to go up. In go dry Velcro rollers with heat added for bend at the roots and a slow cool down.

Now its off with Ians baseball cap. "Do you use any hair gels, Ian?" asks Carla. "All the time, usually the grease from under a tractor Im working on," quips Ian. He gets a quick wash and weight reducing trim, then "a light bleach can be added to the top to shatter through some life."

Helen is all eyes, pleased to see what is happening. Ian is not quite sure why he said yes to all this. Yet hes in capable hands and likes the subtle end result.

Helens face is prepared by cleansing, toning and moisturising followed by concealing blemishes, applying face powder, eyelash curling then toning. "This should be based on natural colouring," says Stephen. "Im using lilac shadow to compliment Helens green eyes." Attaching false eyelashes, a first for Helen, demands patience from then both. "Dont pluck your eyebrows so aggressively, you shouldnt be so hard on them," Stephen tells her.

Ian is then brought forward. You have a mark between the eyes that needs concealing, how did that happen Ian?" asks Stephen. "Well I had a big spring in the workshop that knocked me out a while back and then last week at the Hunt Ball I was helping out as a bouncer and was decked by someone!" laughs Ian.

Carla gives Helens hair a gentle back combing and then its fixed up and looks a real picture. "Just like that girl in Breakfast at Tiffanys," says one of the film crew girls.

Though it seems Helen is too young to remember the film, she is impressed by the make up and hair, likes her dress but is not sure about the gloves. There is also a black feather boa shes fallen in love with, alas Stephen says "no, well stick with the shawl."

Helen looks stunning and Ian reckons he looks smart and will be "straight off down the pub tonight and on the pull."

"Im sure to get a ribbing about my hair from work mates, even though the bleaching is subtle and Im not too sure about wearing a bowtie, its not to my liking," he says.

&#42 Four others

Four other Young Farmers, Andrew Carter, brother Phillip, Rebecca Dunn and Jenny Flinton have been invited to join presenters Ailsa Greenhalgh and Paul Roseby to see if theyre suitably impressed and to question Stephen about how they can dress likewise on a tiny budget. "All quiet please," and in comes the famous clapper board and "action."

A brief introduction and on come our glamour twins, Ian and Helen. Wow, the audience is suitably impressed, "absolutely gorgeous" is the exact phrase. Are they really the friends they usually see dressed in jeans, Tee-shirts and trainers? These Young Farmers never fail to get to the annual Harrogate County Ball and the local clubs Valentines dance, in whatever they have, can borrow or afford to buy. Now they, like Helen, have had their eyes opened to other options that will make them look a million dollars just for the night.

Unfortunately, like Cinderellas finery, these clothes are a temporary illusion, tomorrow they will go back to the shop and all that will be left will be happy memories and the knowledge of how to put on the glitz!

&#8226 Style Street (BBC Digital channel) from Helmsley will be broadcast nightly during the week starting April 26 and the Young Farmers make-over will appear Wed 28.