In June 1978, a Gala Queen was chosen from pupils at Auchinraith Primary School. The lucky winner was 12 year old Nancy Gilchrist, of 1 Mossbank, Blantyre. I know the gala photos weren’t great that day, so here’s a brilliant picture of Nancy at the time!
Nancy was crowned on Saturday 1st July 1978, (not 1975 as another site keeps repeating) with other maids of honour chosen from the other schools. The maids of honour were Heather Kalinsky, 110 Glenfruin Road of High Blantyre Primary, Lynn Riva of 63 Dalcraig Crescent who attended David Livingstone Primary School, Karen Bell of 8 Craigton Place who was a St Josephs School pupil and Carol Ann Ferns of 23 Greenhall Place from St Blanes Primary School.
On the Tuesday before the event, Nancy met up with 2 of her maids of forebeaerers to discuss arrangements for the crowning. The girls pictured are Nancy, Heather and Carol Ann, all 12 years old at the time.
The ceremony took place in Stonefield Public Park. Mrs Annie Dickson, a senior citizen of 44 Coatshill Avenue took the role of being the lady to crown Nancy. The crowning was the end of a marvellous civic week of celebrations. Here’s another fantastic picture of Nancy on the day.
Gerry Kelly who is now married to Nancy told me, “Nancy also took time to be photographed at a grandparents grave that day.”
From “Blantyre Explained” by Paul Veverka (c) 2017
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