Review of May Procession Reminiscence Event

May 17 the Queens

Former May Queens

The St Marie’s Heritage Group were delighted to welcome former parishioners back into St Marie’s for a recent May Procession Reminiscence Event.

The event proved to be a great success as attendees swapped anecdotes about the various roles they had during processions, the clothes that they wore and the sacrifices their families made so that they could join in. A few hymns were sung too and there was a great deal of laughter and conversation.

Perhaps more importantly, the event provided guests with the opportunity to see old friends & acquaintances and come together over a cup of tea and chocolate hobnob.

Incredibly, the event saw the reuniting of the 1947 May Queen (Ann Newton) and her Train Bearer (Dan Moran) a mere 70 years after their procession (see photo below).

May 17 Dan and Ann Newton

The St Marie’s Heritage Group decided prior to the event to only promote it through the Parish Newsletter. This was because we’d had a few recent events which had “sold out” within 24 hours of being promoted online. People would read about them in the Parish Newsletter and then feel frustrated to find out the events were already full. We will return to promoting events online in future though.

Thanks very much to everyone who attended (especially the volunteers from The St Marie’s Heritage Group). We hope you enjoyed the event as much as we did.

Here’s the feedback we collected on the day:

Was there anything you particularly liked?

– Was a great afternoon.
– Roger’s delivery and bringing together the many aspects of this topic.
– Lovely, memorable day. Met my May Queen after 70 years! Special.
– Very fulfilling event. Bringing back lots of happy memories and meeting people who have been in the Parish of St Marie’s in the early years.
– It was lovely to firstly come into my old church and to recall happy memories of school days. People spoke about their recollections. A truly magical event.
– Everything was wonderful and I felt a tear in my eye.
– I very much enjoyed listening to everyone else’s memories.
– Bringing back such lovely memories and meeting old friends.
– Nice to get a cup of tea.
– Most enjoyable seeing all old photos from the past. First visit back to St Marie’s since it closed. Lovely afternoon.
– Memories.
– Sharing photographs. Igniting memories. Thank you.
– Made very welcome. Lovely stories.
– It was lovely to reminisce and brought lots of happy memories, nice to meet school friends.
– Really enjoyed meeting people who I haven’t seen for years, especially as I was May Queen in 1946 and met up with one of the train bearers, Danny Moran.
– It was lovely to reminisce and brought back lots of happy memories. It was the first event I have attended but will definitely return.
– It was nice to hear forgotten memories.
– Almost like having a family get-together, rekindling memories of St Marie’s.
– I particularly liked the events of the matron of Honour and Queen and the Boys, dress up as well, in white pants and shirts.
– It was a very enjoyable afternoon meeting old friends I had not seen for many years and brought back many happy memories.
– Meeting people
– Loved everything especially photos
– The photographs. Discussions.
– I enjoyed the event listening to everyone’s stories.
– Hearing stories of what went on in the background. IE Having dresses made, being chosen as a May Queen, Pages etc.
– Meeting old friends from school days and seeing the way some had changed and others I recognised immediately.
– Meeting people who you haven’t seen for a while, and enjoy thinking about times gone by.
– Enjoyed meeting old friends. I loved looking at all the photos and listening to all the speakers.
– Lovely to see old friends again.
– Very good.
– Group and individual contributions were very interesting and brought back lots of memories of what it was like to be part of the May processions at St Marie’s, Widnes. Great discussions. It was lovely to see people who you hadn’t seen for years and photographs were a great help for this.
– Looking at all the old photographs from the processions (all black & white) and listening to all the comments.
– I enjoyed it very much.

Was there anything you particularly disliked?

No responses.

Any ideas for future Heritage Events at St Marie’s?

– Maybe. A microphone!!!
– More of the same. It’s important to keep the memories of St Marie’s alive.
– More events of the same.
– More aspects of school life in St Marie’s
– We need to carry on in the future with these meetings. Very enjoyable.
– Christmas event – carols
– Carol concert

May 17 the Room

Roger welcomes attendees to the event

May 17 Roger and Queens

Roger interviews 4 former May Queens

May 17 Mary Queen Walk

Mary shows us the official “May Queen Walk”

May 17 Peter & Roger

Moving the statue of Our Lady proved a challenge for Peter & Roger.