Search is on for girls who made the headlines in 1976...could it be you?

The search is on to find the first female students to attend Giggleswick School in Settle in 1976 (s)(
The search is on to find the first female students to attend Giggleswick School in Settle in 1976 (s)(

A search has been launched to find four of the first girls who attended a school in 1976 when it became the first in the North of England to become co-educational.

While Giggleswick School holds regular events for its alumni and is in touch with over 400 ‘Old Giggleswickians’, as they are known, across every continent in the world, it has lost touch with Beverley Wild, Victoria Eskridge, Helen Sykes and Elizabeth Street. Could they be in the Ribble Valley?

Melanie Bailey (nee White) was also one of the first five girls to attend and after being invited to speak at the Schools Speech Day in 2004 she also features in a commemorative booklet for the 40 year anniversary. Melanie went on to join the Metropolitan Police Service where she became Chief Inspector from the Counter-Terrorism Command.

The appeal was launched at the school’s annual ‘OG Day’ which saw over 150 alumni return to the school to take part in a variety of activities before having afternoon tea outside the School’s cricket pavilion.

Alumni Officer, former Head of Geography and House Master, James Bellis said: “The range of Old Giggleswickians who attended this year’s OG Day was truly heart-warming – it was wonderful to see alumni of all generations spending time together, from those who left last year to some who left in the 1940s.

“We would really love to get back in touch with all the girls who made history in 1976 and hear about what they have been up to and their memories of the school.

The announcement was a milestone at the time, making national headlines. The Yorkshire Post ran with the headline “The girls of Giggleswick kill tradition” and the Daily Mail ran the headline “Public School Goes Co-ed after 464 years”. The most amusing headline, however, came from the Daily Express with “Putting the Giggle in Giggleswick”.

If anyone has any information about the girls or attended Giggleswick and does not receive the regular alumni magazine and event invitations they are asked to get in touch with James Bellis by calling 01729 893000 or emailing jpbellis@giggleswick.org.uk.