YES, we know it’s almost April, perhaps not the most appropriate time to feature Father Christmas on Memory Lane, but we have the answer to reader Patti Birkett’s question: “I wonder if anyone can identify the Fairy Godmother?”
Her poser came as Patti (nee Meddings) was featured back in December with her brother Vic meeting Father Christmas in the grotto of RHO Hills in the late 1950s.
Now Peter Fowler writes from Chester: “Mrs Patti Birkett, of Marton, asked for the identity of the Fairy Godmother.
“In fact her title was the Snow Queen, and the lady is Patricia Fowler nee Lightbown, who at the time also lived in Marton.
“She has been married to me for some 47 years, has three sons and five grandchildren, and lives in Chester.”
Peter reveals: “At the time of the picture she was employed at RHO Hills in the window display department, whose staff were seconded to the grotto each December.
“She is still in contact with members who were employed there at the same time.
“Here is a photograph taken a few years ago showing some of them on the store site in Bank Hey Street when it became Littlewoods, and another one of Patricia and myself.
“This year the ladies are off again for a reunion and along with the usual catching up this will give them more to talk about.”
Peter adds: “Incidentally, Lightbown Avenue in Marton was built by Patricia’s family on land that formed part of the garden of Blaydon House, my wife’s grandfather’s family home.”