THE first ever Spiritualist service was held at Largs and Garnock Valley Crematorium in memory of 'loyal and kind' Gladys Morrison.

Spiritualist officiant Josephine MacKenzie, a friend of Gladys, who died aged 75 after a short illness, said that she wanted an uplifting service because of her belief in the 'afterlife.'

She had been a faithful member of Largs Spiritualist Church.

Mrs MacKenzie said: "Gladys will be met with smiling faces of family and friends who have gone before her."

She added that local lady Gladys, whose maiden name was Howie, was an 'extraordinary woman' who was very loyal, kind, selfless and dignified.

The service heard she was a devoted mother to her son Michael, a GP in Bath.

Her former husband Craig Morrison had remained good friends with Gladys and, in her last months, had helped to take care of her. He said that she had been a wonderful wife who was 'always correct'.

The service also heard how Gladys had been 'very private and dignified' during her illness as she did not want her friends to be upset.

The West Kilbride woman, who graduated with honours in Domestic Science, was a fabulous cook who had put her expertise to work as a nutritionist. She had an interest in renovating properties and loved family holidays in Greece.

After her close friend Meg died, she developed her interest in spiritualism and told of how she received excellent evidence from mediums about Meg and her mother. As a tribute to Meg, she gave 13 years service to the Ayrshire Hospice.

Mrs MacKenzie added: "You knew where you stood with Gladys and she will still be with us in the front row. In spiritualism we know that death is a continuation of life, a rebirth."

The service took advantage of the new crematorium's facilities by showing lovely photographs of Gladys's life as a favourite song, The Prayer, was played, while the retiral song was "Thank You for Being A Friend".

There was a collection for Ayrshire Cancer Support and Ayrshire Hospice.