Children as young as seven have been hiring limousines to take them to their school prom. The American invention has caught hold in the U.K thanks to the popularity of films such as High School Musical where the prom is built up as the highlight of school life. Traditionally the prom is meant for 16 and 17 year-olds leaving secondary school however, not wanting to miss out on all the fun, primary school children have now begun having their own end of year celebrations – and there’s no scrimping on the prom experience.
£800 dresses, luxury stretch limousines, professional hair stylists and make-up artists are just some of the extravagances these mini-prom queens are indulging in. Not wanting to be outdone by their peers, children and putting their parents under significant financial strain in their quest to have the perfect prom.
The news has sparked anger from some groups who see the trend as worrying. They argue that dressing these little girls and boys up to look like adults is an unhealthy practice and one which is forcing them to grow up to soon.
Others, including many parents, see the prom as a fun diversion for their youngsters and revel in the fun of preparing their little ones for their big day. Adele Wilk arranged for her 7-year-old daughter Ellie to have “the time of her life” at her school prom in South Wales last year. The mother of two treated her daughter to a new dress, glitter make-up and a stretch limo to take her to the prom. She said “We hired a limousine for her and eight friends, which cost £12 each, and the limo took them around the village before dropping them at the school.”
The popularity of the prom looks set to snowball with kids looking for flashier and more extravagant means of transport; at a prom in the Midlands earlier this year, the group of sequinned youngsters arrived by helicopter. Love it or loathe it one thing’s for sure; limo hire businesses look set for a windfall.