I don’t have nerves anymore: The inspirational grandmother who has returned to the catwalk at the age of 80
10:29 GMT, 5 September 2012
Her last catwalk appearance may have been over 60 years ago, but Marion Finlayson looked as though she’d never been away as she made a triumphant return to the runway at the age of 80.
The glamorous grandmother, who first modelled when she was a teenager before pursuing a career as a teacher, went down a storm at the launch of the 50 Plus Festival in Aberdeen earlier this week.
Marion says she is enjoying the experience a great deal more the second time around as she has grown more confident over the years.
Inspirational: Eighty-year-old Marion Finlayson wows the audience as she takes to the runway at Aberdeen City Council's 50 Plus Festival 60 years after giving up modelling
First time round: Marion worked as a model in the 1940s before becoming a teacher
‘I thoroughly enjoyed it,’ she said. ‘I hadn’t done it since I was a student in the late 1940s. Luckily I don’t have nerves anymore so I just got up there and had lots of fun.’
‘I couldn't believe the crowd. There were about 300 or 400 people watching and they were great.'
Marion, who is grandmother to Antonia, 13, and Andrew, 11, previously worked as a teacher at Albyn School in Aberdeen for years and went on to work with special needs children.
Overcoming her grief: Marion's husband Bruce died in 2010 after 54 years of marriage. She says modelling is helping her deal with her loss
She decided to return to modelling after the death of her husband Bruce in 2010 and says having something else to focus on is helping her to deal with her grief.
‘My husband, Bruce, died a year and a half ago after 54 years of marriage, a very good marriage, and I found it very difficult to overcome it,’ she explained.
‘But doing this catwalk has really helped. I've got to meet lots of new, younger people, which I think is good for me.
‘I even had a muscly personal trainer in tartan to walk me down the catwalk.’
The widow says her family and friends have also played a huge part in helping her to move on after losing her beloved husband, and reveals that she recently found the strength to go on holiday alone.
‘I used to go on holiday to Italy a lot with my husband, and I wasn't sure about going away on my own,’ she says.
‘But I've gained a lot of confidence recently and I thought to myself, “no I'm not going to stay at home, I'm going to go”. After going to Italy I even went to Mauritius.’
Marion, who is incredibly great shape for her age, says she likes to keep active and regularly attends yoga and pilates classes.
‘I do yoga, pilates and tums and bums classes every week,’ she says. ‘My grandchildren are a handful as well, they're always running about.
‘The modelling was something different and I would definitely do it again. If anyone asks me I will have a go – it's better than doing the ironing.
‘I've been interested in fashion all my life and I'd be the first to admit that I'm a bit of a shopaholic.’
Making a comeback: Marion is escorted down the runway at Aberdeen City Council's 50 Plus Festival