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Friendships made 60 years ago are still flourishing for a group of women who first met in 1958 on the first day of school.
As 11 year-olds starting Notre Dame, Everton Valley they would never have imagined that they would still be in touch and sharing stories with each other so many years later. When they left school some friendships endured and others got lost along the way. But it was the website ‘Friends Reunited’ which brought many of them back together again 15 years ago.
The women enjoy two reunions each year: one every summer to fit in with the annual visit to Liverpool of Kay Roney (nee Williams) from Arizona and Sheila Maddocks (nee Manley) from Canada and a Christmas get together for those closer to home. Christine Williams (nee Walsh) comes up from Shropshire and Rosemarie Marshall (nee Smith) from Cardiff.
One of the group, Anne McCann, said: ‘We realised that this year it would be 60 years since we started school and so we made a particular effort to get as many of us as possible together. We had a big banner made, so everyone else eating at Ego restaurant in Hope Street was in no doubt about why there was such a large group of women there having a great time.’
When Anne and Rosemarie learnt that the school, on Everton Valley, was to be demolished, they made a special journey to the building to witness for the last time some of its beautiful and historic features. Said Rosemarie: ‘We both remembered the huge sweeping staircase, wooden floors which shone and exquisite stained-glass windows. We raced down to catch a final glimpse but unfortunately it was too late.’
Instead, determined to keep a piece of history for their friends that they asked workmen on the site if they could take a brick. The pair, who are also first cousins and grew up in Norris Green, left that day with a brick and a plan to create souvenirs for themselves and their friends. Said Anne: ‘We managed to get someone to slice the brick into pieces and this summer those pieces found new homes in places as far away as Arizona and Canada’.
And in an effort to accommodate as many of the group as possible there was even a second, and slightly smaller reunion a few days later. ‘Not all were able to come to Ego,’ said Rosemarie, ‘last minute calls to help with the grandchildren don't stop for reunions, so we held the mini reunion a couple of days later in the Bluecoat buildings.’
Currently planning the Christmas get together Anne said: ‘Let’s hope that we are all able to get together for our 65th and 70th reunions, and if there are others from Everton Valley’s class of ’58 who would like to join us please get in touch via Facebook.’