Lawrence - This is your life

Back to news and stories page

Added 6th August 2021

Lawrence - This is your life

We asked one of our volunteers some questions about his life to share with you all

Lawrence - This is your life

Lawrence Gilgallon, Volunteer Extraordinaire with the Hospice was recently interviewed on Zoom by Ian Low for ACCORD’s ‘This is Your Life’. Here is a summary of what was a very thoughtful and entertaining afternoon with many thanks to both Ian and Lawrence.

Born in “Kelvingrove”….ohhh get me…in June 1954 (No! I hear you say) and moved within 3 months to a one bedroom flat at 71 Causeyside St where I resided for 25 years.  Dad was killed in a coach crash (with a party from Smithycroft school( in May 1974 and lost mum (Irene well known figure in Paisley council) in 2006.  I am the eldest and have a brother in Troon/brother in London and sister in Albuquerque NM.  Thinking back, quite a squeeze to have 4 kids/2 cats and a dog all crammed in to one flat.

Very happy family life and with Dad securing a company car (first one in a Mini van in 1961), we all piled in to the van and had wonderful trips to England/North of Scotland and all places local like Stevenson where I remember the ‘jaggy grass’ in the sand.

Educated at South Primary and my plans to be a TV cameraman went down the tubes when I failed that dreaded 11 Plus (for some reason you had to have Higher Maths and my school journey was not going to deliver my goal).  Then went To Williamsburgh secondary (where Mum attended in the 1930’s) and finished up at Reid Kerr College doing a business studies course.  Fair to say that in my younger years, I could have done better at concentrating on the lessons rather than have had my head in the clouds…….as my Gran once said…”Sometimes your head is full of Mince (more of that later)”.

I have to owe my career in Financial Services to a local college lecturer Hugh Niven who pointed me to apply for a job at The Scottish Mutual Assurance Society (SMAS) as a junior clerk in May 1971.  Many of us have key figures who touch/shape our lives and thanks Mr Niven for allowing me to enjoy 36 very happy years at the one company.  The company went through a few owners and I ended up working for Santander as a Senior manager in Financial Services and travelling (3 return flights a week) throughout the UK brokering large deals and meeting many people from all walks of life. I recall one of my nieces saying” What do you actually do Uncle Lawrence”?   In summary…..A relationship manager.  In my Sales career, had many exciting opportunities (a few are):   Having dinner at the Twin Towers in NY/Flying from NY to London on Concorde/Ski-ing in Austria/Trip to Venezuela and a 5 star trip to Paris.  Santander decided to sell the Life Division and I was given a package (aged 53) to ‘retire’ in 2007 and through the good offices of Jim Wardrop, the start of my journey as a volunteer at ACCORD.  I had a ‘wee’ consultancy job in Bristol/London from 2007 and fully retired last February.

Married Liz at the High Church in 1979 (how has she put up with me?) with Jack Robertson and Bob King officiating.

Hobbies:  Golf/Travelling/1960’s/70’s pop trivia. Quizzes (apart from Tipping Point)Garden.

Favourite meal?   I have had the pleasure of dining with a few personalities in my career (Brucie/Jimmy Tarbuck/Russ Abbot/Judith Durham (Seekers) and Royalty.   As a result top class meals in some fantastic venues HOWEVER my choice to the question Mince/Tatties and Cabbage.  My Gran spoiled us with her favourite recipe and hey=r magic mince pan……iron and black.

Film is one of the classics One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest.  I had to sign a Dr up once in a hospital in the East end of Glasgow and when the medicine cabinet came out you could see some of the patients cower in fear…have never forgotten that image which has been with me for over 40 years.   The film was telling/informative/sad/funny and when the native American smashes the window at the end…you just want to jump up and clap!!

 

Tv shows;   Repair Shop (what does Jay do apart from say “You take care now and Allo”?)/as a child Blue Peter and Line of Duty…as you read this the last episode of the current/Last? Series has been shown was H the donkey referred to by Hastings???

Book.   Back to school, now focussing, only read a few books and I loved the 39 steps by John Buchan…..also recall a book by Neville Shute but can’t remember the name.

What would surprise you about me?…….Nothing I hear you say.   I was heavily involved in the YMCA (having only joined for table tennis in 1968) and held most official posts over the 20 years of involvement.  Liz and myself were also ‘famous’ for the Junior Discos held on a Friday evening….packed out every week and our treat was a Fish tea at Castelvecchi before the mayhem.   I was honoured to be President of Paisley in 1983 during the centenary celebrations and on the National scene was Vice Chairman of the Scottish YMCA for 2 years.  One of my other roles nationally was to head a committee raising funds for International emergencies.  After visiting a refugee camp in Austria, decided to organise something different to raise money and awareness on what was happening on our doorstep in Europe.  Would suspect that (at the time in 1987) I was the trailblazer for what is now a common way of securing support.  I gathered some famous names from Tv/radio and the media along with local firms to cycle from Glasgow to Dehli in 3 days.   Raised over £17500.00 and we covered the distance by using static exercise bikes.   House of Fraser allowed us to use their premises for the event which kept going day and night along with a huge map in their window which lit up as we covered the globe.

Have had a great life and blessed to meet many interesting people from all over the World, here’s to the next 67 years!!

Related news and stories

Stories

Alison Auld - This is your Life

This Is Your Life ACCORD Community Hub Zoom Alison Auld, Charge Nurse, ACCORD Hospice aka Mrs Christmas

Read more

Stories

This is your life - Nora Scott

Nora took part in This Is Your Life with Accord Zoom recently. We all enjoyed hearing about such a varied life and thought it should be heard. Nora has a phenomenal memory and many stories, this is just a snapshot.

Read more

Stories

Nora's Story

Nora has been supported through the pandemic by the Hospice

Read more

Stories

Hannah's 21st

The Inpatient Unit staff at ACCORD support Alison to have her daughter Hannah's 21st Birthday at the Hospice.

Read more

Stories

Alice's Story

My lovely sister Alice was first given the shock of breast cancer in 2017, just as she was celebrating her 54th birthday.

Read more

News

Lawrence - This is your life

We asked one of our volunteers some questions about his life to share with you all

Read more

Stories

Richard’s Story…

I am so grateful to all the team at ACCORD, for all the support they gave my mum and continue to give the family and I.

Read more

News

Linda smashes her target for Hospice Care!

Linda Stark, 61, from successfully completed her own personal challenge of running the Edinburgh Marathon. Due to restrictions in place for the Pandemic, this had to be done virtually – but that didn’t stop Linda! “I’m 61, on my own and no children. I was widowed at 31 (Drew had a sudden and fatal heart

Read more

News

‘I Remember’

‘I remember’: Scottish  Covid Memorial, Pollok Country Park, Glasgow Alec Finlay (artist) & Lucy Richards (designer)

Read more

Newsletter

ACCORDian Spring/Summer 2021

Latest ACCORDian available to view

Read more

News

Burns Zoom on Thursday with DTU

ACCORD Burns Day Zoom - We couldn’t let this time of year pass without a nod to the bard.

Read more

News

Kathy Gray presents her music playlist

Recently Kathy presented her Music Playlist on Accord Day Therapy Zoom, we had a fun afternoon enjoying her choices and sharing some of our own. A Music Playlist consists of your top pieces of music in life and the stories behind them…it is really a life journey. Here is Kathy’s playlist, if only you could

Read more

News

Helen Fleming Whitelaw This is your Life!!

Helen Fleming Whitelaw - This is Your Life

Read more

News

Weekly Zoom by Ishbel Murdoch

We are still carrying out weekly Zoom Groups at ACCORD with enthusiastic participants.

Read more

News

ACCORD receive £120,000 cash boost

ACCORD has secured a vital cash boost of £120,000 from The Julia and Hans Rausing Trust.

Read more

News

Ryan thought of brave Mum every step

Ryan Ayr from Linwood, conquered the 26-mile Virtual Kiltwalk challenge alongside four of his best friends and is on track to raise a fantastic £16,000 for the Hospice – smashing their original fundraising target of £500. The team has raised over £7,000 and counting from generous family and friends, but their overall total is set

Read more

News

ACCORD Impact Report

Please click here if you would like to look at the latest ‘Impact Report’ for ACCORD Hospice, we hope this gives you an insight on all the things we have achieved in the last year because of the help and support the community around us gives us. You made this happen, you made an impact

Read more

News

ACCORD Hospice continues to put life into days

For the past 25 years the community of Renfrewshire as a whole has supported our organisation financially and physically to continue to put life into the days of all the patients and families we care for. Brian Hunter (Clinical Services Manager at ACCORD) wanted to clarify that the restrictions associated with Covid 19 has not

Read more

News

ACCORD prepares to re-open its Store and Shops

ACCORD is delighted to advise that it intends to re-open its Store and shops on a phased basis starting on 13 July. The plan is to open the flagship Store on Glasgow Road and the shops in the Paisley Centre on that date. The other shops in Johnstone, Renfrew and Barrhead at on Causeyside Street

Read more

News

Thank you St Vincent’s Staff!

We want to thank all our nursing friends from St Vincent’s who have joined in collaboration with us over the past few months during the pandemic.

Read more
Want to share your story?

Want to share your story?

Whether you’re a donor, volunteer, patient or family member we’d love to hear about your experience at ACCORD Hospice. It’s so easy, just click the link below to get started or email us at [info@accord.org.uk].

Let's Talk
Let's Talk... Close
Looking for help?
Looking for help? Close
Supporter
Supporter Close
How can we help you?
How can we help you? Close
*
*
*
*
Ask us a question
Ask us a question Close
*
*
*
*
Call us 0141 581 2000