A Hartlepool woman was given the chance to get up close with popular TV personality and presenter Rylan Clark-Neal.
Sue Thompson, who manages Slimming World groups in Hartlepool, met the much-loved celebrity at the organisation's annual awards.
Rylan, who shot to fame after appearing on hit talent-finding show The X-Factor, co-hosted the annual Slimming World Awards with the organisation’s founder and chairwoman Margaret Miles-Bramwell.
They came as Slimming World is set to mark 50 years since Margaret opened her first group in 1969.
Sue said: “I couldn’t be more proud of the members of the Hartlepool groups. Not only have they lost fantastic amounts of weight throughout 2018 – with many of them hitting their target weights – they’ve also improved their health, boosted their confidence and are heading into 2019 with new healthy habits that will help them stay slim for life.
“Watching people change before my eyes and start being able to do things that they didn’t think possible before losing weight absolutely amazes me.
"Every week I feel privileged to play even a small part in supporting consultants to help people towards these achievements and to celebrate with them, so I felt especially honoured to represent Hartlepool at the Slimming World Awards.
“Rylan was blown away by the difference Slimming World makes to people’s lives too.”
Rylan, who is now a seasoned presenter, having appeared on This Morning and Channel 5’s Big Brother’s Little Brother, said he was thrilled to meet Sue at the event, which was held at Birmingham’s International Convention Centre.
He said: “I met so many people who had lost incredible amounts of weight and made a huge difference to their lives.
“While the stories I heard were obviously very personal, the one thing they all had in common was how much support they received from their ‘Slimming World family’ and how so many of them were achieving their dreams.
"Every one of them spoke passionately about how they couldn’t have made those changes to eat more healthily and become more active without support week-in, week-out, so people like Sue who run and manage Slimming World groups are clearly worth their weight in gold.”