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Patricia Allardice


Patricia Mary Allardice (Pat) was born in London on 3rd July 1926.  Her father, Ardel Mckenna was from Denny and was employed as butler in a grand house in the city of Westminster.  Her mother Eleanor Jones was a Londoner.   They had three daughters, Pat, Shelagh and Jean.  Pat was the eldest.

Pat loved reading, visiting the museums of South Kensington, attending the Proms and the ballet at Sadler’s Wells and rowing on the Serpentine. In 1939, at the age of 13, she was briefly evacuated to Dorchester in Dorset as the Second World War began. On returning to London, Pat witnessed the dogfights in the skies above London and later lived through the “Blitz” from September 1940 until May 1941; often sleeping in basements, underground shelters and even the tube stations. After her apartment was damaged, she was evacuated for the second time, this time to stay with her grandmother in Denny, Scotland, from where she witnessed the bombing of Clydeside.

Pat’s formal education was interrupted by the war and from the age of 14, she took on a variety of menial jobs, none of which she enjoyed, but she learned typing and customer service skills along the way and on returning to London, she got a job in the long distance telephone exchange at St Paul’s, which would eventually lead to a work opportunity in France that would change her life.

However, Pat now had to endure the V1 rockets, which led to her abandoning one apartment due to structural damage and the terrifying V2 rockets which fell near her house and blew out all her windows and took away the ceiling of the house, so for the third time, she had to find accommodation, this time in Brewster Gardens, near Ladbroke Grove, where her parents would live for the rest of their lives.

Pat became fascinated by the heroism of the French resistance fighters and that led to a lifelong passion with the French language and culture. An opportunity arose to study on an intensive French course at the Post Office, which Pat accepted gratefully. Pat also went to a French film club and attended a cultural centre for French nationals living in London, where she could practice her language skills, hear French music and attend dances.

After working with the “land army” to bring in the harvest at the end of the war, Pat got her dream job, working on the telephone switchboard of the newly re-established British Embassy in Paris. 

During her stay there, she was given a spare ticket for the rugby international between France and Scotland. Pat at the time, knew nothing about rugby, but she did witness how the Scottish scrum half unwittingly injured the star forward of the French team, who subsequently was unable to return to the field of play. She also vaguely remembered how the crowd (including her) booed the scrum half every time he touched the ball and especially after he converted a try to give Scotland victory.

One year later, while on holiday in Menton, in the south of France, Pat met Dallas (Dally) Allardice, the same scrum half by chance and fell in love at second sight.

Pat married Dallas in 1951 and the raising of their children Rory, Graham, Lorna and Catrina kept her busy until she had the passion to resume her interrupted education, taking ‘O’ Grades and Highers around the same time as her eldest son. She graduated from Dundee College of Education as a primary school teacher and joined Dallas at Dundee High School, where she worked for fifteen years. Pat loved children and loved teaching and she had a very fulfilling career there.

Retirement was filled with activity; new languages, new friends, tai chi, yoga, swimming, knitting, sewing cross stitch, foreign languages, gardening, film club, hill walking, writing her autobiography, watching rugby, holidays in Glenesk, travel to the USSR (Georgia, Armenia, Russia, Azerbaijan), Hong Kong, China, Poland, Czechoslovakia, France, Germany, Italy, Singapore, Thailand, Dubai, Al Ain, Australia and Malta. 

Pat also had an ever-expanding family of nine grandchildren and eighteen great grandchildren and she was a constant, inspirational and positive presence in all of their lives. The family holidays in Aboyne, Mallaig and Glenesk were the foundation of lifelong memories.  Pat will be missed by all her family and friends, but the love that she gave out and her beautiful smile will never be forgotten.

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