Sheffield TV star Rebekah Vardy's '˜intimate' smear test photo sparks surge in women booking appointments
An '˜intimate' photo of Sheffield TV star Rebekah Vardy having her smear test has sparked a surge in the number of women booking appointments.
The wife of Leicester and England star JamieÂ shared the candid snap on Instagram asÂ she waited to undergo a smear test.
She was trolled by some Instagram users who said there was "too much on show" and "some things are best left private".
But Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust said the post had already reminded some women to book in for cervical screening.
Millions of womenÂ in England have missed out on the "life-saving" tests.
The photo showed her in red jungle socks from I'mÂ A Celebrity, Get me Out Of Here!Â which she appeared on last year and which sheÂ wore to remind her she could "brave" the smear test.
"I dread smear tests andÂ I don't even know why,"Â she wrote.
She tagged Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust in the post but is not formally working with the charity to raise awareness.
Trust chief executive Robert Music said the charity was "really pleased to see Becky sharing her smear test experience".
"We want women to know they're not alone if they feel worried about going for their smear test, and that there's also lots of support available to help them feel more comfortable when they go for their appointment," he said.
Sign up to our daily newsletter
The i newsletter cut through the noise
The charity pointed out that many women have commented under the photo saying it has prompted them to get tested.
Cervical screeningÂ rates rose after reality TV star Jade Goody diedÂ from cervical cancer, but the numbers have fallen back and areÂ at their lowest for two decades in England.
Recent statistics show that 1.28 million women in England did not take up their invitation for cervical screening last year, which amounts to more than one in four women not attending.
Jo's Cervical Cancer Trust said there was a wide range of reasons which could make going for a smear test difficult, from psychological and social barriers to physical barriers such as access and literacy.
In response, to her photo, one follower wrote: "I think it's fantastic you're raising awareness! I cry every time i go for mine as im so embarrassed but I always go, and its thanks to people like yourself, raising awareness."
Mrs Vardy was also quick to defend herself against the trolls.
To the man who posted saying there was "too much on show", she replied: "My thighs, knees and feet....the Victorian era called and they want you back home ASAP."
The 36-year-old partner of the Sheffield-born England and Leicester City striker first met her husband-to-be when she was hired to organise his birthday party back in 2014.
Following a two-year relationship, Rebekah and Jamie, 30, got married in 2016.
Sheffield born Jamie started his career with Stocksbridge Park Steels at 16 after being released by Sheffield Wednesday making his first team debut in 2007 and earning Â£30 a week.
Since then, he has enjoyed a meteoric rise in the game, winning the Premier League with Leicester City, becoming one of Britain's hottest goalscoring talents and becoming a regular in the England line-up and featured at this year'sÂ World Cup in Russia.