FORMER Miss Ireland Holly Carpenter has revealed her shock at hearing of her old agency's closure.
The Clontarf native, who jumped ship from John Compton's books to sign up with Andrea Roche a couple of months ago, told the Diary that she was stunned when she learnt that Compton Models would be no more.
The 20-year-old insisted that she had "no idea" about the scout's plans to opt out.
"There were no problems that I knew of at all. I've heard things from agents in general that things are a bit tougher these days, but I never thought things would be this bad. I'm very shocked and saddened by the news," she said.
"I haven't talked to him yet, I spoke to him last week to plan a lunch and he didn't mention it, I'm guessing he wanted to break it to me then.
"I joined Compton and everything changed for me after that. He helped me so much and taught me everything. It really is the end of an era," she added.
Brunette beauty Holly stressed that she doesn't believe her move to AR played a part in John's decision.
"I don't think it has anything to do with me personally. It's not the kind of decision you make overnight.
"I only moved because I was ready for a change, but we have stayed friends.
"He's so professional and he never got mean or harsh towards me about it.
"Dublin is so small and everyone knows everyone, so sometimes it does seem like a big deal when models move. But John was so supportive."
John, who was in the business for 25 years, admitted that he was bowing out of the industry as it is "not what it used to be" and as a result of its cut-throat approach.
"It probably has changed from years ago -- models are so cheap now and there are so many agencies," said Holly, who is dating Leinster rugby star Cian Healy.
"It's tougher to keep prices up and compete with the others."
NCAD student Holly, who is gearing up to kick off fundraising efforts for her Catwalk To Himalayas challenge later this year, spent the weekend chilling out with her family in Wexford and swapped her high heels for her slippers.
"I'm such a granny, I like taking it easy. And with Cian away on tour, I'm happy to stay in."
The pageant queen will be judging Miss SoSueMe next Saturday alongside Emily McKeogh, Hannah Devane and Roz Purcell.
Holly will turn out with her model pals at the Wright Venue to help select a Miss Ireland hopeful.