More than 250 women lit up the night at the Sparkle Midnight Walk.

A sea of light and colour lit up the night as more than 250 women took part in St Andrew’s Hospice’s Sparkle Midnight Walk.

In a blaze of glitter, flashing bunny ears and tutus, the participants departed from the iconic Grimsby Minster on 10 and five mile routes around Grimsby and Cleethorpes, but not before being entertained by a spectacular fire show from the Earthbound Misfits and the chance to get glittery at a Sparkle Station.

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Prior to lining up for the midnight klaxon, they also enjoyed a disco and a warm-up by Cleethorpes fitness guru Paul Walker. And there were surprises along the route, in form of outlandish stilt-walkers.

Best friends Catherine Redgraves and Annalee Pennington (pictured above) were first to arrive for the event, sparkling from head to toe in glitter. Annalee celebrated her 23rd birthday on June 30, while 22-year-old Catherine’s is on July 12, so they said the Sparkle Midnight Walk’s 10-mile route was a unique way to celebrate.

Annalee, from Healing, said:  “We signed up for a laugh and  also to support a great cause.  My cousin is a personal trainer,  so I have been preparing.”

Keen runner Catherine, who  has a five-month-old son,  Rueben, added: “I had a look  around the hospice once and it  was a lovely, happy place. It’s  a very good cause.”

Emma Bakes, 23, was recently crowned Miss Charity Queen 2016 as part of the Miss Grimsby contest. She raised more than £1,000 in four weeks during the contest, half of which is being donated to the hospice, and was among the Sparkle walkers.

Emma, who began training as a hairdresser at the age of just 15 and started her own business at 21, said: “The work done at St Andrew’s is amazing, and Sparkle is a great opportunity to show my support and raise even more money.

“I was over the moon when I won the title of Miss Charity Queen. I worked so hard to raise as much money as possible, but this wouldn't have happened without the support from my friends, family and also my clients. I am truly honoured to hold this title for the next year and I promise to continue that hard work.

“Supporting charity is so important to me; it really does open my eyes to how many great people are out there. If I can make a difference to just one person’s life, then there is no better reward than that. I strongly believe everyone should have this outlook. No one knows what is around the corner and we never know when we will be in need.”

Mum and daughter team Jennie Cartwright and Polly Mooney, 24, (pictured below) took part in the 5-mile route.

Polly, from Waltham, who works in logistics for DFDS, said: “We don’t get to spend that much quality time together so this is a chance for a good natter, while supporting the hospice at the same time.”

Jennie recently worked on the Threads of the Past project at the hospice; a creative heritage initiative to aid dementia sufferers and their families.

“Sometimes you can put money in a collection box and not see where it goes to,” said Jennie. “With the hospice, all the money is spent locally and that’s heartening. It really is such an important service for the community.

“Being a history enthusiast, it’s brilliant to see such an ancient church as Grimsby Minster filled with the very modern sight of women wearing flashing bunny ears!”

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