Class of 76' meet for first time in 30 years

Former St Hilda's RC High School for Girls meet up for the first time in decades at their reunion.
Former St Hilda's RC High School for Girls meet up for the first time in decades at their reunion.

Classmates met for the first time in over 30 years in an emotional school reunion.

The get together for the Class of 76' from the former St Hilda's RC High School for Girls in Burnley was organised by Debbie Heron who now lives in Perth, Australia.

Keen to meet up with old friends during a visit to her hometown, Debbie tracked a couple down through social media and the event blossomed from there.

Held at the Prairie pub in Burnley, around 20 former pupils turned, several of them making the journey from different parts of the UK.

They were all at the school, which was situated in Coal Clough Lane, from 1976 to 1981, but many of them were also at primary school together.

Debbie, a nurse who has lived Down Under for almost 20 years, said: "It was an absolutely fantastic event and it was wonderful to meet up with girls I haven't seen for so many years

"The years just melted away and we chatted for hours about schooldays and also what has happened to us since.

"There was plenty of laughter and tears.

"We have all promised to keep in touch now and we have already been contacted by a few other girls who would like to come to the next one."

The first St Hilda's reunion was held in 2014 when Debbie last visited the UK and small get togethers have been held every year since then.

Text messages and good wishes were sent from a number of former students who could not make the reunion which is now set to become an annual event thanks to Debbie, who was also the prime mover behind the recent massively successful Cat's Whiskers reunion night.

Debbie, whose maiden name was Shaw, has three sons and she was joined on her trip to the UK by her youngest boy Sean who is 14.

Along with meeting up with family and friends she also made an emotional journey to the house in Park Avenue where she grew up.

* Do you recognise any of the faces on here? If you would like to get in touch please contact Debbie Heron or Susan Plunkett (Denwood) on facebook.