Bullet bra sweater girl – Vera Day

British actress Vera Day

By 1960 George Harrison Marks was looking towards the film world. In that year alone, he produced twelve short films, and in 1961 his debut feature Naked as Nature Intended was released. So it should be no surprise that his third book, Vera, was dedicated to the British actress and glamour girl Vera Day. Unlike many of his models, Vera was a genuine actress and had been in several films already.

She was born in London just before the war and grew up in Forest Gate, East London. Leaving school at 15, she tried several jobs, such as office work, shop assistant, and waitressing, but beneath it all was a burning desire to go “on stage”. Eventually, she obtained employment in a hair salon and a little while later started modelling for hairstylists. Inevitably with her talents, she became a full-time professional model.

One day she saw an advertisement in a theatrical paper for showgirls, so taking time off from modelling and securing the tiniest bikini she could find, she attended the auditions. The impresario, Jack Hylton, noticing this cute little blonde with an abundance of confidence, was impressed, and so Vera got her first part in the West End production of Wish You Were Here at the London Casino in 1953.

At the end of the run, Hylton put her straight into his new show at the Princes Theatre, Pal Joey, and from there to the Victoria Palace to appear with the Crazy Gang in Jokers Wild. 

Glamour girl cum actress Vera Day poses in her bikini on top of a camera, circa 1955.

During these shows, other producers noticed the talent of Miss Day, and film parts were offered. Val Guest used her in Dance Little Lady, then came an important role in Carol Reed’s A Kid for Two Farthings, to be followed by a much sought after role in the Monroe-Olivier film The Prince and the Showgirl. From here, films and T.V. plays followed in rapid succession. Radio was not left out of her plans, and she won the role of the daughter in The Huggetts.

Vera Day with Roger Moore in The Saint, S1. E11 – The Man Who Was Lucky.

She appeared alongside Roger Moore in the T.V. show The Saint, and she made an appearance in the Hammer science fiction film Quatermass 2. One of her few leading parts was in the horror film Womaneater, in which her tight jumper and bullet bra steal the show. She even had a small part in one of my favourite films, Hell Drivers. More recently, she played Tanya in the Guy Ritchie film Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

Vera Day married the boxer cum actor Arthur Mason in 1954 but got divorced in 1961. In 1963 she married the photographer Terry O’Neill. They got divorced in 1976. Terry went on to marry the actress Faye Dunaway.

The fabulous Vera Day in the1959 movie Too Many Crooks. 

Vera Day was Britain’s very own bullet bra sweater girl. She will be forever burned in the nation’s collective glamour consciousness, or at least mine.

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One thought on “Bullet bra sweater girl – Vera Day

  1. Vera was one of the guests at the 18th Festival of Fantastic Films, held in Manchester in 2007.

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