Miss World 1970

Miss World 1970, the 20th Miss World pageant, was held on 20 November 1970 at the Royal Albert Hall in London, UK.[5] 58 contestants competed for the Miss World title. Jennifer Hosten from Grenada won the crown of Miss World 1970.[3][4] She was crowned by Miss World 1969, Eva Rueber-Staier of Austria. The event was marked by controversy in the days beforehand, during the contest itself and afterwards.

Miss World 1970
MW 1970 - BBC.png
Miss World 1970 Titlecard
Date20 November 1970
PresentersMichael Aspel, Keith Fordyce, Bob Hope[1][2]
VenueRoyal Albert Hall, London, UK
DebutsAfrica South, Grenada, Mauritius
WithdrawalsChile, Costa Rica, Czechoslovakia, Paraguay
ReturnsCeylon, Hong Kong, Italy, Malaysia, Puerto Rico, Spain, Thailand
WinnerJennifer Hosten[3][4]
← 1969
1971 →



Countries and territories which sent delegates and results for Miss World 1970[2][3][6][7][8]
Final results Contestant
Miss World 1970
1st Runner-Up
2nd Runner-Up
3rd Runner-Up
4th Runner-Up
Top 7
Top 15

Continental Queens of BeautyEdit

Continental Group Contestant
  •   Sweden – Marjorie Christel Johansson[9]



A panel of nine judges evaluated the performance of the contestants in Miss World 1970.[2][10][11] Judges included Joan Collins, Roesmin Nurjadin (the Indonesian Ambassador), Eric Gairy (the first Prime Minister of Grenada), Glen Campbell and Nina.[2][10][12]



  •   Africa South
  •   Grenada
  •   Mauritius


  • Last competed in 1959:
    •   Hong Kong
    •   Puerto Rico
  • Last competed in 1964:
    •   Spain
  • Last competed in 1966:
    •   Malaysia
  • Last competed in 1968:
    •   Ceylon
    •   Italy
    •   Thailand

Protests and controversyEdit

There was controversy before the contest began because the organisers had allowed two entries from South Africa, one black, one white. On the evening of the contest, a bomb exploded under a BBC outside broadcast van in an unsuccessful attempt by the Angry Brigade to prevent the contest being televised. There were no injuries. The audience then had to enter the hall past noisy demonstrators who were penned behind barricades.[13]

During the evening there were protests by Women's Liberation activists.[8] They threw flour bombs during the event, momentarily alarming the host, Bob Hope.[14][15] He was also heckled during the proceedings.[2][13][16] The protests are the subject of the film Misbehaviour which was released in 2020.

Even greater controversy then followed after the result was announced. Jennifer Hosten won becoming the first Black woman to win Miss World and the black contestant from South Africa was placed second. The BBC and newspapers received numerous protests about the result. Four of the nine judges had given first-place votes to Miss Sweden, while Miss Grenada received only two firsts, yet the Swedish entrant finished fourth. Furthermore, the Prime Minister of Grenada, Sir Eric Gairy, was on the judging panel. One of Gairy's obituaries described his corruption and use of a gang of thugs when in government.[17][13] There were many accusations that the contest had been rigged, with counter-accusations that scrutiny of the results was motivated by racism and pointed that favouritism of white contestants had been typical in the contest's history. Some of the audience gathered in the street outside Royal Albert Hall after the contest and chanted "Swe-den, Swe-den". Four days later the organising director, Julia Morley, resigned because of the intense pressure from the newspapers. Years later Miss Sweden, Maj Christel Johansson, was reported as saying that she felt she had been cheated out of the title.

Julia Morley's husband, Eric Morley, was the chairman of the company (Mecca) that owned the Miss World franchise. To disprove the accusations, Eric Morley put the judging panel's ballot cards on view[6] and described the complex "majority vote system". These cards showed that Jennifer Hosten had more place markings in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th positions over Miss Sweden and the other five finalists. Julia Morley then resumed her job. However many still felt Sir Eric Gairy on the judging panel had influenced the other judges to give Ms Hosten token placings.[13]


  1. ^ Pelling, Rowan (13 July 2015). "What's so wrong about being a beauty queen?". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "The Owosso Argus-Press". Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  3. ^ a b c d "Miss World Competition Through the Years". E!. 12 December 2014. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
  4. ^ a b c Shin, H. (2006). Beauty for the World: A Spiritual Odyssey. AuthorHouse. p. pt60. ISBN 978-0-595-40022-5.
  5. ^ Chaudhuri, S. (2006). Feminist Film Theorists: Laura Mulvey, Kaja Silverman, Teresa de Lauretis, Barbara Creed. Routledge Critical Thinkers. Taylor & Francis. p. pt48. ISBN 978-1-134-34667-7.
  6. ^ a b "Misses World on stamps". The Philippine Star. 11 November 2015. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
  7. ^ a b c Drum: A Magazine of Africa for Africa. African Drum Publications. 1971.
  8. ^ a b "Daytona Beach Sunday News-Journal". Retrieved 27 January 2016.
  9. ^ a b c Times Daily
  10. ^ a b Daytona Beach Sunday News-Journal
  11. ^ The Glasgow Herald
  12. ^ Ottawa Citizen - Google News Archive Search
  13. ^ a b c d Baker, Rob (2015). Beautiful Idiots and Brilliant Lunatics: A Sideways Look at Twentieth Century London. Amberley Publishing. ISBN 978-1445651194.
  14. ^ "Miss World 2006". Archived from the original on 3 August 2008. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  15. ^ "L–ast milestone on a record-breaking comedy Road ... Bob Hope dies at 100". Buzzle.com. 29 July 2003. Archived from the original on 16 March 2009. Retrieved 24 May 2011.
  16. ^ "Cattle show: Miss Grenada wins, Bob Hope loses". Ottawa Citizen. 21 November 1970. Retrieved 18 January 2019.
  17. ^ O'Shaughnessy, Hugh (25 August 1997). "Obituary". The Independent.

External linksEdit