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Peter Pan Lyric Theatre

Lottery winner’s wedding and the A’town News

By Gemma Burns

The West Belfast woman who scooped £12.9 million in the Euromillions draw saw one of her weddings guests arrested four decades ago – thanks to the Andytown News.
Mary Hamilton, whose maiden name is McGreevy, is originally from the Springfield. As the 65-year-old celebrated her win this week she recalled to the Andersonstown News her wedding day 40 years ago when her local paper unwittingly got one of the guests arrested.
“My husband and I were married in a registry office in College Street but it was a full wedding, with me in a white dress, six bridesmaids and a page boy, so all the office workers and people walking by stopped to watch,” she said.
“I think it turned out to be one of the biggest-ever weddings in the registry office. One of my guests was arrested on their way to the wedding, though. She was searched at the barricades that used to surround the city centre and searched.
“It was when they found a copy of the Andersontown News in her bag that she was arrested, so I have the local paper to blame for that little incident,” she laughed
A delighted Mary, right, who will share the win with her husband Alexander (67), who is known as Sandy, is the daughter of Alec McGreevy, who was a well-known local builder in the West of the city.
“I grew up in the Springfield area with my four sisters, brother and parents sharing a two bedroom house,” she added.
“We struggled just like everyone else in the area but sometimes we were fortunate to have a car or a lorry.
“People asking for us in the area were usually told to follow the telephone wire because we were the only family in the street with a phone.”
The former furniture store worker has left her job with immediate effect for a well-deserved rest after more than 50 years in work.
“I got my first job at 11 years of age and there was a time in my life that I worked four jobs. I got my driver’s licence when I was 16 and drove my father’s lorry after he was badly burned in an accident.
“I was always keen to work and keen to earn. I spent 11 years with Belfast Car Hire, then 27 years with another company before joining Bannon’s around eight years ago. I am sad to be leaving Bannon’s, it’s a great company that treats its staff like they are family.”
The couple are now preparing to spend their new-found wealth and have vowed to make life as comfortable as they can for family and friends and to help both sides of the community

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