Looking to pass on a box full of memories

Sandy Atkinson looks at some of the photographs and documents from Betty Boyle's box
Sandy Atkinson looks at some of the photographs and documents from Betty Boyle's box
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A Bellshill family are hoping to find a good home for a box full of memories belonging to a former occupant of their house.

Natalie Williamson was in the loft of her aunt and uncle’s bungalow at 9 West End Drive, when she found a cardboard containing hundreds of pictures, letters and paraphernalia.

Betty Boyle (right) at a wedding with her sister, who is thought to be called Ina.

Betty Boyle (right) at a wedding with her sister, who is thought to be called Ina.

She said: “It was tucked away in the corner so I presume when the house was being cleared it, either it was missed or no one knew it was there.”

On opening the box it was discovered to contain items going all the way back to 1916, with many of them having belonged to an Elizabeth (perhaps nee Weir) and Danny Kelly.

A previous occupant of the house, which is part of the West End Sheltered Housing complex, was an Elizabeth Boyle (pictured, right), who had the maiden name of Kelly.

Current occupant Louise Atkinson said: “We’ve been told that Betty moved here around 1976/77, so the box way well have been up there for about 30 years.

“We moved here from Dean Street around five years ago, and we weren’t directly after Betty, but the woman who did move in wasn’t here very long, so she must have lived here for a long, long time and been pretty well known locally.”

It is understood Betty and her husband Hugh were both and deaf and dumb, and didn’t have any family off their own, although Betty had a sister who may have been called Ina.

Louise said: “It doesn’t appear like they had any children to pass the box onto, but there must be some family out there somewhere, perhaps even on her husband’s side, who would like to have all these memories, it would be such a shame to throw them in the bin.”

The items appear to date from during the First World War right through to the late 70s or early 80s.

This includes an identity card belonging to Elizabeth W Kelly from 1916, photographs, postcards and letters detailing Danny Weir’s military service during World War Two in France and Germany and an autographed picture of the actress Googie Withers that a Hugh Kelly paid 2½d for in 1951.

Addresses given for the couple include Thorndean Avenue and Hawthorn Gardens, although it seems that Danny spent significant spells away from his family as his work took him down south.

As well as Kelly, other family names which pop up time and again on the backs of the photographs are Chalmers, Weir and McEwan, although other than Weir perhaps being her mum’s maiden name, there is no clue given to their relationship to Betty.

Louise said: “I don’t think I ever knew Betty, but my sister Margaret lived near the family so perhaps I did see her around from time to time.”