Here’s a question … what, or more accurately who, connects the Fleetwood Trust with the popular TV show of the 70’s and 80’s It’s A Knockout?
As you've probably guessed from the title of the post and the photo, the answer is our Secretary and Trustee, Maureen Burns.
Fleetwood born Maureen, went to Flakefleet then the Grammar School. “Like many Fleetwood girls I spent much of my youth playing out, idling the summer away at the Swimming Baths and dancing at Chesters Dancing School.”
Maureen joined the Civil Service upon leaving school as an Admin Assistant and took early retirement some 40 years later as a Senior Civil Servant. “I was fortunate enough to have had a wide and varied career working with some of our country's top civil servants, numerous talented colleagues and most of the major consultancy companies. During my time in the Civil Service my work took me all over the UK but Fleetwood always remained home, it is where I have always felt the most settled. I was awarded an OBE in 2009 which I considered a massive honour for myself and my family.
I have a son, a daughter, a step daughter, daughter in law, son in law and two grandchildren who along with my lovely husband Liam form the centre of my family. However, being from Fleetwood I also have numerous relatives and extended family and I am never surprised to find that if you talk to someone in the town you can usually find some distant relation that connects you together.”
Along the way Maureen has also been a member of Hesketh House ladies darts team and in her late 40's trained as a Dru Yoga Teacher. “I had practiced yoga for many years and wanted to deepen my own knowledge and find a balance to a busy work life.”
Maureen has been involved with Fleetwood Trust since the beginning. “A few like-minded souls had the outline of an idea to provide more co-ordinated help and support in the town. We looked at several buildings but kept coming back to the sad, mainly unused shell of the former Hospital Building.
Goodness it was in a very sad state but "what if" we kept asking ourselves, just imagine, what if we could bring it back to life again to make it a useful and welcoming centre for all generations to use.
Yes, it is going to take a lot of money but just think what we could do with a bit of imagination, courage and determination. I believe in Fleetwood, I believe in the people of Fleetwood and I have never backed down from anything I believe in. I now have the time and skills to help, I said to myself time to step up and help to do something about it!"
Maureen sums up her reasons for being involved, “We deserve this, our future generations deserve this, that sad unused building that had previously helped so many generations deserves this. I know it will not be easy at times, there is a lot to do and money is short but I will continue to work hard as a Trustee and will help to drive this forward. I look forward to each and every milestone we achieve as we start to wake up this old building and bring much needed support and services under one roof.”
And that connection to It’s A Knockout … Maureen, then Maureen McChrystal was in the Fleetwood Wyre team that took part in a BBC televised heat in 1974 versus Southport … we won’t mention the result!