Two North East pre-schoolers have taken their first steps towards a career in front of the camera following a nationwide model search.

Alexander King and Elsie Bennett, both three, were chosen from more than 700 entries to showcase Charles Clinkard’s range of school shoes.

The North East-based family footwear retailer invited parents and carers to send in fun snaps showing how excited their child was to start school.

The two winners, who are both starting school in September, were invited along to Clinkard’s HQ in Middlesbrough with their parents for a fun photoshoot that will see their faces – and feet – on the company’s new national advertising campaign.

As well as starring in the campaign, the pair also won free shoes for a year.

Alexander’s proud mum, Lyndsey King, 33, from Coulby Newham, Middlesbrough, said: “We felt so proud when we found out Alexander had been chosen as one of the winners.

“He’s never done anything like this before but I thought he’d be the perfect fit as he can’t wait to start school.

“He wakes up most mornings asking ‘is it September yet?’ and was so excited to wear a school uniform for the photoshoot – he’s school mad.”

Elsie’s mum, Kate Bennett, 36, from Linthorpe, Middlesbrough, said she couldn’t believe it when she found out her daughter had won.

“It’s one of those things, you enter a competition and don’t actually expect to win.

“Elsie loves shoes and she’ll often try mine on at home – she even has her own set of high heels.

“She couldn’t wait for us to buy her school shoes because she’s so excited to start in September – now she’s won shoes for a year!”

The company has been providing children with their first school shoes for generations.

Managing director Charles Clinkard said: “With such a high number of entries it was so difficult to choose our winners.

“Alexander and Elsie both stood out and their personalities really came across in the pictures. They were both great on the day and there was plenty of dancing and funny faces.

“It’s great working with our very own customers and we can’t wait to see the final campaign in stores this August.”

Since the company was founded more than 90 years ago it has gone from strength-to-strength and is now a nationwide success with more than 30 stores across the UK.