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My first Thin-mas! Pauline Quirke celebrates her eight stone weight loss with glamorous new look

By Holly Thomas

Transformation: Birds Of A Feather star Pauline Quirke has lost eight stone this year

Many of us embrace the new year with a vow to get in shape.

But for most such a resolution is usually abandoned before January is out.

Pauline Quirke defied the dieting stereotype to lose an astonishing eight stone in a year- and she's celebrating in true festive style.

The former Birds Of A feather star opened up to Woman magazine about how she achieved her incredible weight loss.

The actress admitted that previously she 'never had anything nice to wear' and had 'no interest in fashion'.

'I’ve developed an interest in clothes at the age of 52,' Pauline revealed.

'When you’re a size 28, you wear what fits. When I was in Birds Of A Feather, I’d turn up for work and there’d be huge racks of clothes for Linda and Lesley to choose from and there, in the corner, would be a tiny rack for me.'

New look: The actress has discovered a stylish side since shedding the weight

Pauline has certainly discovered a new love of fashion, as she confessed: 'Once I’d reached my goal, I bought a pair of black Gerry Weber trousers and a turquoise coat from Betty Jackson.

'I’m learning to walk in high heels. I’ve never worn them but you need to get the old pins out when you’re wearing a dress.

'I wore a little pair of kitten heels recently but they didn’t last longer than an hour – I like dancing too much.'

She continued: 'After 30 years, I’ve finally said goodbye to my elasticated waist- bands. I didn’t buy many clothes during the diet because I was still losing weight so there wasn’t much point,' she explained.

'I don’t like things that are low on the waist, as far as I’m convinced my waist stops where my chest starts!'

Drastic action: Pauline, pictured at the Granada TV Summer Ball in September last year, weighed 19 stone when she resolved to turn her life around

It's clear that Pauline's motivation to lose weight was not related to her career, as she emphasised: 'I’ve never been an oil painting but I’m living proof you don’t have to be a size 8, young and gorgeous to be an actress,'

'I’ve worked solidly for 43 years and I was very overweight for a lot of that time.'

'I weighed 19st. I know the whole world starts their diet in January and most of us stop it by March but I was determined to do it,' she divulged.

Pauline credits the Lighter Life plan for her drastic change, stressing: 'I won’t have surgery though.

'I’m a mother of two and I won’t put myself under a surgeon’s knife unless I desperately have to and they’ll be for medical reasons, not cosmetic.'

Pauline spoke to the Mirror last month about the moment she realised she needed to tackle her weight.

The Emmerdale actress found it embarrassing when she had to ask a flight attendant for a seat belt extension as she set off for a family holiday.

'As I walked up the stairs to the plane I just got the fear. I thought of something I knew was going to go wrong and cursed myself for not thinking of it six months before, and doing something about it,' she said.

'I felt like c**p, to have to do that in front of my husband and kids.'

That incident, together with being told by doctors she would need a hip replacement, made Quirke realise she would have to conquer her weight.

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