For­mer Carmyl­lie teacher en­joys 90th birth­day sur­prise.

PARTY: Sur­prise cel­e­bra­tion thrown for Edith Gar­row who taught at Carmyl­lie Pri­mary for 39 years

The Courier & Advertiser (Angus and The Mearns Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - JANET THOM­SON

A pop­u­lar in­fant school teacher who spent her en­tire ca­reer teach­ing at a ru­ral pri­mary in An­gus was treated to a sur­prise party at­tended by some of her for­mer pupils.

Miss Edith Gar­row cel­e­brated her 90th birth­day in style at a party or­gan­ised by her neph­ews, John and David Forsyth.

As well as fam­ily mem­bers, Miss Gar­row, of Ar­broath, was joined by some of the pupils she taught at Carmyl­lie.

She used the mile­stone birth­day to re­flect on her teach­ing ca­reer which be­gan with a “tem­po­rary” post­ing at Carmyl­lie, as she hoped to get a place­ment near her child­hood home at Lin­tra­then.

The “tem­po­rary post” was to last 39 years.

Edith and her late sis­ter, Betty, at­tended Braes of Coul Pri­mary at Lin­tra­then and Web­ster’s Sem­i­nary in Kir­riemuir, as they lived at Lin­tra­then, where their fa­ther worked as game­keeper with the Dundee Cor­po­ra­tion.

Edith at­tended Dundee Train­ing Col­lege where she gained her parch­ment, qual­i­fy­ing as a teacher in 1950.

There were only two peo­ple he straight­ened his tie for – Mar­garet Thatcher and Edith Gar­row

She said: “I started as an in­fant teacher at Carmyl­lie East. I took up tem­po­rary em­ploy­ment, stayed 39 years with one day’s ab­sence.”

Miss Gar­row stayed on as a teacher when three schools – Carmyl­lie West, Carmyl­lie East and Kirk­den – merged in 1970 to cre­ate Carmyl­lie Pri­mary, re­tir­ing when she turned 60 in 1989.

She put her love of the pro­fes­sion and her ex­pe­ri­ences to good use when she wrote a book en­ti­tled The Hu­mor­ous Side Of Teach­ing which sold thou­sands of copies to raise funds for can­cer re­search.

A mem­ber of Carmyl­lie and Ar­bir­lot WRI, Miss Gar­row was a reg­u­lar speaker at ru­rals and church groups.

She is a mem­ber of the Friend­ship Club at the Old and Abbey Church and is a reg­u­lar con­trib­u­tor to The Courier’s Craigie col­umn.

Look­ing back on her ca­reer, she said: “I just en­joyed the whole thing, I en­joyed ev­ery­thing about it.

“I knew noth­ing about the party. “There was a for­mer pupil from Nairn there as well as for­mer pupil Char­lie Smeaton. I taught him and his four sons, and three of them were also there.

“All my friends from the Friend­ship Club were there – it was the best-kept se­cret.”

Edith’s neph­ews John and David trav­elled from their homes in the Bor­ders and France re­spec­tively to sur­prise their aunt.

John said: “The late Lord Fraser of Carmyl­lie sent his chil­dren to Carmyl­lie Pri­mary.

“He used to say there were only two peo­ple he straight­ened his tie for – Mar­garet Thatcher and Edith Gar­row.”

Edith’s birth­day was cel­e­brated with her neph­ews John and David and for­mer Carmyl­lie pupils.

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