Straid Primary celebrates major milestone

Mr B Evans, Mrs F Mairs and Mr R Cromie.
Mr B Evans, Mrs F Mairs and Mr R Cromie.

Former staff and students joined with the current school family at Straid Primary to celebrate 190 years of Elementary and Primary education at the school.

During a series of recent events to mark the special milestone, the community came together to look at old photographs and record books, as well as enjoying a concert at Ballyclare Secondary.

Principal, Mrs Florence Mairs said: “It was fantastic to see so many past pupils ranging from the teenage years to some in their 80s and 90s perusing the archive of old photographs and registration books.

“One group of very attractive mature ladies spent hours and hours going through records with a fine-tooth comb and while consuming copious amounts of tea and buns, managed to identify nearly everyone in many of the old black and white photographs of the 40s and 50s.

“Many old friendships were renewed, and it wasn’t unusual to hear people say, ‘I haven’t seen you in 50 years.’

“There was a real buzz of excitement in the school and village. We had three generations of families coming along together to find information from the old records and there was much reminiscing and laughter.”

Mrs Mairs added: “The concert closed the week of celebration and was excellent. Present and past pupils provided a variety of entertainment which included vocal soloists, instrumentalists, jazz - dance and ballet. The Uster–Scots poems (Murphy’s Sick Note and Willie’s Motor Car) recited by John Magill, had the audience rolling around with laughter.

“The standard of all those who took part was excellent and it would be difficult to single out any one item. The Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 Choirs sang beautifully and with evident pride, pleasure and gusto.

“It’s a long time since I’ve encountered such a sense of enjoyment, excitement and community ranging across the generations.”