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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 April, 2005, 11:46 GMT 12:46 UK
Calendar Girl widow to wed vicar
Angela Baker, Julie Walters, Dame Helen Mirren and Tricia Stewart
Angela Baker (l) with Julie Walters, Helen Mirren and Tricia Stewart
The widow who inspired the hit movie Calendar Girls is to marry the vicar who helped her through her grief.

Angela Baker, 58, of Linton-in-Craven, North Yorkshire, shot to fame when she posed naked for a calendar with friends from Rylstone Women's Institute.

The idea for the calendar - to raise money for Leukaemia Research - came after the death of Mrs Baker's husband, who died from the disease in July 1998.

Mrs Baker is to marry the Rev Charles Knowles, a friend of her husband.

'It's brilliant'

She told BBC News: "It's great because he knew John. They went to Sheffield University together.

"He has supported us all the while and will continue to support us with things we have done with Calendar Girls. It's brilliant."

The couple plan to marry in November in East Sussex followed by a civil ceremony in Linton-in-Craven.

Ms Baker, who was Miss February in the 1999 calendar, currently works as a part-time weddings registrar.

'Very proud'

Mr Knowles, 61, from Coventry, said: "I'm delighted and amazed that Angela's agreed to marry me.

"I'm not used to all the publicity, but it's very exciting.

"She's done a wonderful job raising all the money and I'm very proud of her."

It is nearly six years since the 11 middle-aged members of the Rylstone WI decided to strip for charity, raising more than 1m for Leukaemia Research.

Thousands of people bought their calendar and their exploits were turned into a film starring Julie Walters in the role of Mrs Baker.

The money raised by the women has already help open a pioneering cancer research unit at the University of York.

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