The Rear of the Year is a British award given to the supposed possessor of the best posterior, although quite what criteria are applied in the decision making process is unclear. Much loved by the British media as it provides an easy way of filling a few column inches and providing the excuse to display a few mildly titillating photographs.

First awarded to the actress Barbara Windsor as a one off promotional gimmick and on a reasonable regular basis since 1981 as a continuous promotional gimmick. Male winners began appearing in 1986 with Michael Barrymore, and regularly since 1997 presumably to avoid accusations of gratuitous sexism.

The award was previously sponsored by Slendertone Flex a manufacture of body toners, and is now sponsored by Matalan, a discount retailer that now claims to be the UK’s largest jeans retailer. Clearly considered to be a valuable commercial property as 'Rear of the Year' is a registered trademark (number 2180937 as it happens). Although presumably there is nothing to stop you from launching your own competing award if you so wished so long as you selected an alternative title.

Famously and rather controversially awarded last year to the Welsh classical singer Charlotte Church, who had only just turned sixteen at the time. (See Charlotte Church wins Rear Of The Year.) Although generally speaking regular appearances on television seems to be a prerequisite for nomination - soap stars, singers and TV presenters preferred.

Those Rears of the Year in full

Female Winners

Male Winners

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