A LARGS pensioner has recalled magical memories of a Royal visit to the town 60 years ago. 
This summer marks the 60th anniversary of the Queen visiting Largs to open Inverclyde Sports Centre.
One of the lucky members of the public who managed to get a close up view of Her Royal Highness on her visit to the town was Sarah Goldie, who remembers the Queen 'glowing' in her limousine as the royal entourage arrived on a spectacular summer's day.
Sarah, a former English teacher at Largs Academy and a long term member of the Largs and District Historical Society, recalled how Largs was bedecked with colourful flags and bunting in celebration for the Queen and Prince Philip's arrival in the town.
She said: "My parents supported the Queen, and Empire Day was always a big celebration in Largs.
"The Royal family was well supported back then,
"We had various flag displays above our door for the Brisbane Queen festival, Empire Day, and the Queen's visit to Largs. 
"The school had a holiday on Empire Day.
"When the Queen was coming to open Inverclyde Sports Centre, even though she wasn't going up and down our street, all the houses were wanting to put on the show.
"My mother insisted on having her flags up, and I couldn't stop her!
"They did likewise at Largs Railway Station where they rolled out the red carpet."
Sarah was a young teacher in Kilwinning at the time of the Queen's visit, and returned to her home town to see the big royal occasion.
There was bunting across the Main Street, and large crowds waiting for a close up glimpse of the Queen and Prince Philip as they departed Largs by steam train.
A massive welcome sign banner was also erected on the entrance to Largs at the north end of the town for the royal arrival by limousine.
Sarah said: "There was a formal opening of Inverclyde Sports Centre and Prince Philip donated a dinghy to the sports centre. They launched it and named it at Cairnie's Quay and I went to that.
"If you go down the foot of John Street, there is a little bit of tarmacadam leading down to Cairnie's Quay and that was for the Queen to get down there, and that was called the Queen's Walk.
"It is mostly covered up by grass now as it was only a thin layer.
"The Queen's face positively glowed in the car. 
"That was the first time I was so close to her. 
"She looked so fantastic.
"There was a crowd up at Inverclyde lining the road - I remember seeing the crowds walking up to see her."
The Queen and Prince Philip returned to Largs ten years ago in 2008 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Inverclyde Sports Centre. 
Keeping the royal connection, Prince Edward visited the centre last year shortly after its major £12m revamp.
Prince William also fleetingly visited Largs two years ago when he was picked up on a limousine after being given a royal tour of a submarine, and he waved at visitors at the pier when leaving Largs.
Princess Anne has been a regular visitor to these shores, having attended the Optimists Championships at Largs earlier in the summer, and she also opened the Largs RNLI HQ in 1998. 
Photo: John Keachie.