Birthday milestone for Chris

Chris Wilson (centre) cuts her birthday cake with Nora Porteous and Bill Clark of Motherwell Heritage Society.

Chris Wilson (centre) cuts her birthday cake with Nora Porteous and Bill Clark of Motherwell Heritage Society.

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A former Motherwell swimming champion who supplied school uniforms to thousands of Lanarkshire children has celebrated her 100th birthday.

Chris Wilson (nee Bowman), of Cunningham Street, was born in Forfar and moved with her parents to Motherwell in 1919.

She attended Dalziel High School before leaving to work in the silk factory.

A member of Motherwell Amateur Swimming Club in 1933 she was the first lady to bring the Scottish Cup to Motherwell for the 440 yards’ freestyle, in a Scottish record time that stood for 25 years.

Chris married James Wilson in 1937, a lecturer in engineering at Motherwell College. He was also a well-known local artist and a member of The Wishaw Art Club and Fellow of Dumfries Royal College of Art.

Chris became well known to many for her drapery business which she started in 1960 with a shop in Airbles Street.

This quickly grew resulting in having to move to a larger store in Windmillhill Street where she continued in business, retiring at the age of 71.

Chris continues to live a full and busy life as an active member of Dalziel St Andrew’s Church and Motherwell Heritage Society.

The society threw a party to celebrate Chris’s birthday in North Lanarkshire Heritage Centre, while more than 70 people including family from Forfar and Cheshire and as far afield as Canada and America attended an afternoon tea in Dalziel St Andrew’s.