A DARTFORD woman has beaten thousands of hopefuls to be crowned Britain’s first black plus-size model.

Philomena Kwao has already completed a photo shoot in Miami for Cosmopolitan Magazine, which appears across eight pages in the May issue.

Dubbed 'The body is back' Philomena features in beach and holiday wear and is introduced to the readers as "A sexy, statuesque beauty with the kind of killer curves we'd all, well, kill for".

Miss Kwao says it was "a complete surprise" to win the competition, run by curvy clothing brand Evans, Excel Models 1 and Style369.com.

After seeing her pictures in Cosmopolitan, she said: "I was actually really shocked and surprised at how I looked, I love the pictures and was very pleased with the outcome."

The 22-year-old, who was entered into the competition by a friend, graduated from Bristol University with a first class degree in economics and is currently undertaking a masters at Imperial College, London.

She told News Shopper: "Time management is extremely important as I have a lot of study at the moment.

"I am doing international health management and it is very time consuming but the agency have been very helpful in this respect."

She added: "I plan to make the most out of all the opportunities that this may bring and do the best in them."

Since winning the competition, Miss Kwao has met Nicolette Mason from US Marie Claire and has also done studio based shoots in London.