UK's Sun pulls topless models from Page 3

Page 3 replaces topless model with actresses in bikinis.
Page 3 replaces topless model with actresses in bikinis.

Steady protests have dogged the "Page 3 Girl" feature

LONDON — The Sun newspaper here appears to have stopped its longstanding practice of printing photographs of topless models on Page 3, following increasing pressure from a multitude of groups over many years.

The decision has come quietly, with no mention in The Sun itself, but a short story has appeared in its sister newspaper The Times, on Page 3. (Both papers are owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp.)

The Sun didn't have a topless model in Monday's edition, instead there was a photo of model and actress Rosie Huntington-Whiteley wearing lingerie. Today the third page of The Sun has a photo of two Hollyoaks actresses in bikinis.  

The Times reported that the model on Friday, Jan. 16, would be the last to appear topless. A Sun spokesman was reported as saying, "Page 3 of The Sun is where it's always been, between pages 2 and 4, and you can find Lucy from Warwick at"

A News UK spokesman said the news was "idle speculation by people who don't work on the newspaper," but the lack of a firm denial will has allowed a firm consensus that it looks like Page 3 is history to build online

The feature has run continuously since 1970, when newspaper mogul Rupert Murdoch bought The Sun, then a struggling newspaper with a circulation of around 800,000, from IPC. 

Murdoch transformed the newspaper, making it the best-selling daily in the UK.

The first Page 3 girl was the German model Stephanie Rahn, who appeared in November 1970 under the editorship of Larry Lamb. For many years the shots were taken by the photographer Beverley Goodway, who died in 2012.

The Sun will continue to show pictures of topless models on its website.

Pressure groups have called for the end of topless models on Page 3 ever since the feature began. That pressure has increased in recent years.

The site has won more than 217,000 signatures for its campaign, but at the time of writing had not updated the site with the news, although its Twitter account was abuzz with messages of congratulations from its many supporters, including the MPs Caroline Lucas and Sadiq Khan.

There have been signs that Page 3 might be coming to an end. In November, Page 3 featured naked men in support of Movember for the first time, while The Irish Sun dropped the feature in 2013.

This article first appeared on

Subscribe today for just $116 a year

Get the very latest news and insight from Campaign with unrestricted access to , plus get exclusive discounts to Campaign events

Become a subscriber


Don’t miss your daily fix of breaking news, latest work, advice and commentary.

register free