THE now-legendary members of the Rylstone Women's Institute may have set the ball rolling with the nude calendar trend with their sunflowers, cakes and jam jars.

And thousands of charities have benefited from the barefaced cheek of people up and down the country since that first publication in 1999.

But a more unusual charity calendar is launching in aid of Swindon's own Prospect Hospice.

A group of naturists have collected snaps from their personal photo albums to form an unofficial 2008 calendar to raise money for the Wroughton-based organisation.

Mike Gould features on the majority of the pages in the calendar, including posing in the snow as Mr December, and is responsible for rallying his naturist friends together for a good cause.

"I can't run a marathon or walk from Land's End to John O'Groats but I did want to raise some money," he said.

"This is a natural lifestyle and it seemed to be a good idea for a fundraiser - and Prospect agreed.

"We thought we could put what we do to good use and put remuneration to a worthwhile cause.

"We hope to sell as many as we can, we have a small quantity printed but can do more.

"The sky's the limit."

Images came from the group's personal collections, taking in local attractions including the naked gardeners' Abbey House Gardens, near Malmesbury, and the Savernake Forest, as well as the Isles of Scilly and their own back gardens.

But far from being inspired by the WI's efforts, Mr Gould describes the more standard nude calendars as "cream bun" affairs.

"The cream bun calendar wasn't considered by us, because we wanted to do something respectable that you could give to your granny," the Greenmeadow resident said.

"This is a new slant on it and quite respectable and open because that's what naturism is like.

"The ones with strategically places objects are titillating and like partially clothed ones are not about the open lifestyle we have. They are just nudity and posing.

"Naturism is about having nothing to hide."

Mr Gould, 66, became attracted to the naturist way of life just eight years ago after retiring from the railway works and becoming a life model for Swindon College.

"When people separate it from pornography it's not even in the same ball park - it's a separate thing, a healthy lifestyle."

Prospect spokesman Andrew Thompson said: "Mike approached us with the calendar he was producing and kindly offered to donate proceeds from its sale to Prospect Hospice.

"We are appreciative that he and his friends have chosen to raise funds towards our work."

Derryck Evans, one of the hospice's founders, said he "applauds" people raising money for the hospice in any form.

"Beauty is of course in the eye of the beholder, but if they think they can sell it that's fine," he said.

The calendars can be ordered from Mr Gould by sending a cheque for 7.50, plus 1 for postage, to Ardendean, 54 Severn Avenue, Greenmeadow, Swindon SN25 3LJ. Orders will not be sent out until after July 18.