YANA

Dedicated to Yana : Pamella Guard

CHRIS WOODWARD'S MEMORIES

Here are some more memories from Chris Woodward about Yana's show in Jersey. Chris performed on stage with Yana and Tommy Cooper in Jersey, and a picture of Chris with Tommy Cooper and Yana is show below:-

The charity show was on 18th August 1968 at The Forum Cinema St Helier, Jersey in aid of The Variety Club of the Jersey Tent 52  in conjunction with The Pirates Club of Jersey.

It starred Tommy Cooper, Yana, Bert Weedon, Norman Collier, The Ukranian Cossacks, Chris Woodward, Ballet Montmartre, Carl & Collete and  Jean-Jacques Jordane.

Chris has also kindly provided the following information about Yana's performances at "Sunday Night at the London Palladium", as  well as The Royal Variety Performance. 

I would like to thank Chris for providing all of these amazing memories of his career and the above show with Yana in Jersey. 

Here are the dates and the performers when Yana appeared at Sunday Night at the London Palladium and the Royal Variety Performances:-

Sunday Night at The London Palladium:

1956 JUN  10:  Yvette Chauvire & Peter van Dijk,  Yana & The Jackpots, Richiardi, Jonathan Miller, Gene Detroy  & Marquis, compere Tommy Trinder Beat The Clock £100

1961 SEP 10:    Bob Hope, Yana, Jack Parnell Conducts the Palladium Orchestra compere Bruce Forsyth Beat The Clock £100

 

Royal Variety Performances:

1958 NOV 3, The Coliseum The Orchestra conducted by Harold Collins, Cyril Oranadel, David Croft, Yana, The Stargazers, Max Bygraves, The King Brothers, The Mudlarks, The Beverley Sisters, The Charlivels, Tony Hancock, Cyril Stapleton & His Orchestra, Stan Reynolds, Frankie Vaughan, Bruce Forsyth, Bernard Breslaw, Antonio & His Spanish Ballet Co, Roy Castle, Adele Leigh, Harry Secombe, Harry Worth, Lynette Rae, Hattie Jacques, Max Russell, GH Elliott, Hetty King, Ford Motor Works Military Band Major GH Willcocks, George Carden Dancers, Dior Dancers, Victor Silvester Orchestra, Mecca Formation Team with Frank & Peggy Spencer, David Nixon, Charlie Drake, Pat Boone, Mantovani & His Orchestra, Ron Parry, Eartha Kitt, Kenneth Moore, Norman Wisdom, Jerry Desmonde, Pip Hinton, Marion Grimaldi, Pamela Gale, Felix Felton, Terence Cooper, Elisabeth Wade, Barry Kent,  David Kernan, June Bronhill, Rex Harrison, Julie Andrews, Stanley Holloway.

1960 May 16, Victoria Palace  Orchestra conducted by Billy Ternent, Jack Ansell, The Kentones, Sonia Rees, Croft Twins, Tiller Girls, Bud Flanagan, Naughton & Gold, Nervo & Knox, Bruce Forsyth, Frankie Howerd, Al Burnet, Diana Dors, Richard Dawson, Jimmy Edwards, Benny Hill, Hattie Jacques, Alfred Marks, Bob Monkhouse, Norman Wisdom, Harry Worth, Lonnie Donegan, Adam Faith, John Barry Seven, Cliff Richard, Jet Harris, Hank Marvin, Tony Meehan, Bruce Welch, The Vernon Girls, Jack Tripp, Kathleen West, Joan Mann, Peter Felgate, Allen Christie, Dorothy Wayne, John Gower, Denny Willis, Johnny Mack, Howard Nuttall, John Shackelle, Thomas Walling, Nat King Cole, Billy Cotton & His Band, Max Bygraves,  Russ Conway, Robert Horton, Nervo & Knox ,Naughton & Gold, Bud Flanagan, Eddie Gray, Kazbek & Zari, Ivor Emannuel, Pontcanna Childrens Choir, Sheila Buxton, Pearl Carr, Alma Cogan, Vera Lynn, Millicent Martin, Joan Regan, Marion Ryan, Janette Scott, Anne Shelton, Yana, Ronnie Carroll, Ronnie Hilton, Brian Johnson, Teddy Johnson, Benny Lee, Dennis Lotis, Glen Mason, Gary Miller, Jackie Rae, Paul Carpenter, Charlie Drake, Shirley Eaton, Hughie Green, Sheila Holt & Tom Gillis, Sammy Davis Jnr, Liberace.

1963 JUL 3, The Alhambra Glasgow Geraldos Concert Orchestra, The State Trumpeters, Fay Lenore, Bernard Jamieson, Russ Arness, Barranton Sisters, Max Bygraves, Croft Twins, Addri Dancers, Denis Spicer, David Jacobs, Acker Bilk, The Springfields, David Hughes, Jimmy Logan, Yana, Bob Monkhouse, Lionel Blair, Alma Michaels, Anthony Bygraves, Bob Dixon, Tiller Girls, Barbara Aitken, Alan King, Connie Francis, Jimmy Shand. Jack Radcliffe. Lena Martel. Larry Marshall. Raymond Boyd. Johnny Beattie. Produced by Dick Hurran 

Below are some excellent memories of Yana, including an obituary, with very many thanks to Chris Woodward:-

GWEN SHEVLOFF'S MEMORIES

Many thanks to Gwen Shevloff for writing to the site, whose daughter had Yana as her God-Mother:

I thought I knew all people connected with our dear friend Yana, we knew her from the early 50's till her untimely death. She was my daughter's God Mother and is greatly missed, I would like to hear from you.  Gwen Shevloff.

YANA: SHEET MUSIC & PHOTOS

BILL STAPLETON REMEMBERS YANA'S YG 1

Bill Stapleton has recalled the time that Yuri Garggarin used Yana's car number plate YG 1 :-

Funny how the old mind works. I was remembering a titbit of information about Yuri Gagarin. I used to live in West Kensington and can remember his visit to London, watching him drive in a Rolls into London on the West Cromwell Roads. You can see an image of him in in the car if you Google it. And I can remember reading in the paper at the time that they had to get permission to put a special licence plate on the car he was in - you can see it in the photo - YG1. Who did they have to get it from- Yana, because that was the plate she had on her car! Do you remember that?

Best Wishes,
Bill Stapleton


1965 PROGRAMME

Below is a 1965 programme for the show on Sunday 8th August, at the Princess Theatre, Torquay, which includes the list of performers and three full-page pictures of: - Yana - Chas McDevitt & his wife Shirley Douglas - and comedian Joe Baker,  8 pages including the cover, size approx 9-1/2 inches x 7 inches. The performers were: -

The Hunters. - Billie Davis and Platform Six. - Joe Baker. - Clifford Davis. - Chas McDevitt & Shirley Douglas. - Yana.

MORE SPECIAL MEMORIES

Included above are a cutting from the US magazine 'People Today', October 1956 issue, and a page from a programme from Easter, 1964. 

 

DEE SCOTT REMEMBERS YANA

Here are some great memories from Dee Scott about Yana, and how Dee's Mother looked after Yana's dogs:-

 

DEE SCOTT (DIANA COURTNEY) REMEMBERS YANA:-

 

My name is Dee Scott, formally known as Diana Courtney. My mother looked after Yana's dogs,
Whenever she was working away from London, we had a boarding kennels in Buckinghamshire where the dogs lived in our home with us, as part of the family. On one of these occasions, Yana was about to go to Blackpool for 3 months summer season, and wanted to take her 4 French poodles and one Boxer with her, so I volunteered to go and stay with her to look after Katrina, Puppy Dog, Turk, Lutrek and Charlie for her. I stayed in her flat with her and her secretary, for 3 months, during which time she treated me as a family member, and I was very fortunate to meet all the other stars playing summer season there. Yana was a beautiful, caring, talented lady, and I will always treasure and be grateful to her for the time I spent with her and the friendship she afforded me.

Dee Scott ( Mrs )

MR KINCHEN'S MEMORIES OF YANA

Here are some exceptional memories of Yana's kindness, and her personality, plus an insight into Yana's life, very kindly sent in by Mr Kinchen, who knew Yana very well:-

I have many of her records + photographs, some purchased by me, some taken by me when staying in her then south London Flat in late 1950's/early 1960's period.
I fist met her when visiting the South Parade Pier on seafront @ Southsea, Hants, during my summer holidays from school, in 1959, when along with my Mother, we went to see Yana @ the summer show on the Pier, along with Bob Monkhouse etc.
I shall always remember the date when I first met her, Thursday 20th August 1959, as I was waiting with several other people, for her autograph, also Bob Monkhouse & others who were appearing in the show.  I remember she was wearing pair of sandals, Slacks, & T-shirt, with short blonde hair, blue eyes, she stood only 5ft 2 inches in height, but had a bubbly personality & stunningly beautiful even without her make-up etc.
I learnt in later years that she often had a saucy look on her face & always a very happy person to be with.
When my Mother had booked 2 tickets for the show, we were seated in the stalls area, my seat on the end of a row, with central aisle alongside me, this was my mistake as I very soon found out when Yana was singing a song, holding a microphone with long lead, she came down steps @ side of stage, walked along in front of orchestra pit & up the central aisle to where I was sitting, & upon finishing her song, she promptly sat on my lap, with her arm around my shoulder, whilst talking to me....!  Hence reason why I remember that day I guess.!
After a few mins, she made the excuse that because her dress was bit tight, would I help her back onto the stage, which I did, but she would not let go my hand, just walked me centre stage, singing her last song of act, with me standing behind her, with my arms around her waist...!  I think this was what was known as public participation.
When she had finished singing, she thanked me for being good sport, & let me return to my seat again.
A few days later, on the Sunday afternoon, my parents, Grandma, & I, were sitting in our back garden @ home, as this was the very hot summer of 1959, when we heard the sound of our front door bell ringing, so my Grandma went to answer it.
A few moments later, my Grandma returned, with a young lady behind wearing sunglasses, My Grandma said to me that there was someone wanted to speak to me..!
I looked up from the book I was reading, & looked @ this person, not knowing who it was, until I heard the words 'Do you remember me ??'
Unlike James Bond, I was both shaken & stirred when I found out who it was,....My Yana had come to see my Mother  I, to apoligise for any embarresement from the show a few days earlier.!
We think that she must have got our name/address from the box office @ the Pier, so came to see us in person.!

She stayed for @ least 2 hours that afternoon, had a cup of tea  slice of home made fruit cake that My Grandma had made earlier, as well as chatting with us all, & just as she was leaveing in her car, she gave each of us a kiss.!
The next time we heard from her, was in December, just prior to Xmas, when she sent us all a card, which had her name , address, & phone number on it, so we sent her a very special card in return, & from then onwards, we exchanged cards every Xmas time until the last one in 1987.

Whenever she was passing through the area back to her London home, she would call into see us @ our home, & after my Grandparents had passed away, we had a spare room for guests, which Yana would use if it was very late @ night, as we had a spare key cut for her to use, but the near neighbours of the time, never knew anything about it.

To give you some idea of her kindness, approx 18 months after I left school in early 1960's, I had a mishap @ my then place of work, suffering a back injury,  was in hospital for several onths as a result.
When I left hospital  returned home, my GP suggested that I should go away for back rest somewhere, & soon after during one of her visits, Yana suggested/offered, to look after me in her London Flat, so I travelled by train to London, & was going to stay there for 4 weeks, but somehow this was extended to 3 months, during which time she showed me around different places in the London area, such was her kindness which was very much appreciated.
As we got to know her better over the years, we used to call her by her real name of Pamela, but heaven help you if you tried to shorten it to just 'Pam', she hated her name being shortened.!
I do have copy of her death certificate when she passed away in a central London hospital in mid November of 1989, which came as a big shock to me, not hearing/seeing her for @ least 12 months before then.

One Sunday several years before, she called in to see us, & my Father suggested that perhaps the 5 of us could visit local pub for Sunday lunch, which we did, & whilst we were there, a member of the pub staff thought they knew who she was, & as one of them had a mouth organ, she offered to sing 2 songs to the other diners there @ the time, which went down very well by all those there, so hopefully, you will be able to understand how much her friendliness meant to me.
The only other details about her that I am aware of, is that she was born on 16th February 1932 in Romford, Essex, & had an older sister by approx 18 month - 2 years, called I think, Joan, although I never knew her.  Her Mother was called Gladys, but her Father died before WW2 broke out, when Yana was only aged around 5 years old, so her  sister were bought up single handed by their Mothe, which must have been bit of struggle in pre-war years.

When WW2 broke out in 1939, Yana  her sisterwere sent to south Devon to escape the London area bombing of the time, & because of her likeing for pets etc, she tried to breed mice where they were lodgeing @ the time, much to horror of the 'Landlady' I guess.!

When WW2 finished, Yana  her sister returned to Romford to finish their school work, & Yana often tried singing to the songs on the wireless @ home, but one evening she went into London with friends, to a nightclub somewhere, (probably around 1953/54 period), & one of her friends dared her to sing with the Band wh were playing @ the time in the club, which she did, & as luck would have it, a telent scout from the BBC was there listening to what was going on, & approached her with an offer of a contract for a BBC radio show, as he was very impressed with her talented singing voice, so the rest as they say, was history.

Within a year of becoming well known in the entertainment world, Yana had made 2 feature films, both in 1955, being 'The ship that died of shame' & 'The Cockleshell Heoes', the latter does get an airing on Ch.4 TV from time to time.
She did make 2 other films in the 1950's, namely 'Zarak' & 'Interpol', & was going to appear in the 1961 film 'Nearly a nasty accident' with Jimmy Edwards & Kenneth Connor, but she was out of contract @ the time, so leading role was done by Shirly Eaton instead.

It is also thought that Yana was the first solo singer to have her own series of female shows on BBC TV in mid 1950's, & later became reguler guest on the Dave King shows.


When I knew her in the early 1960's, she had 4 dogs & a Parrot in her London Flat, + hundreds of china animals on shelves in almost every room, even on window sill in the loo..!
She had other interests as well, outside the world of entertainment, includeing a shop in Hayes, Middlesex, which sold toys/clothes etc for the very young, & had her stage name over the top of building.!
It was not unusual for her after singing either on TV or nightclub, for her to be seen after midnight on her hands  knees doing a window displays in her shop prior to returning home to her Flat for a night's sleep.!

I've probably mentioned in a previous communication about her car numberplates YG 1, which was also used whilst the Russian spaceman Yuri Gargarin was in UK doing a tour after his spaceflight in 1961, this was a mistake by then minister of transport Ernest Marples, for allowing 2 different vehicles with same number used @ same time.!
During the late 1950's to early 1970's she had her own Fanclub, based in offices in Regent street in London, almost opposite Hamleys Toy shop, & would often call in there to purchase some French made Dinky Toys vehicles for my collection, which I still have, & bring them down to me if she was passing through my home area from time to time, she got quite good at doing that.!
In the summer of 2004, I had a day trip to London from my home area, takeing both my 35m camera & Camcorder with me,  took some pictures of her last home where she lived before her death in 1989, also the offices in Regent street, which were being renovated @ the time I was there.



In the years prior to her death, she got an ordinary job working as a demonstrater in the department store 'Harrods', although her exact job she did @ the time, I am not certain, but was probably successful whatever it was, knowing her!

Apart from appearing in show on pier @ Southsea for summer season in Southsea in 1959, she was there for just 6 days in September of previous year, then appeared in Pantomime in Brighton, Sussex, @ Xmas/New Year of 1969/70, & in Bournemouth in summer of 1965 as well.
Not certain how long she had shop in Hayes, Middlesex for, but perhaps up to 5 years in mid 1960's period @ a rough guess.
She must have had her first London Flat in Kensington area, from circa 1956 until towards end of the 1960's, when she lived on the Channel Island of Jersey for around 5 years, until returning to London in mid 1970's @ a rough guess.
Her last home was a basement Flat near Marylbone underground station, not far from Lords Cricket ground / St. Johns Wood area where the Beattles used the Recording studios etc, with famous crossing outside it, & must have lived there for approx 14 years until her untimely passing in mid November of 1989, which was a double blow for me, in that my Mother had passed away only around 12 months before then.

I seem to remember that the year following Yana's appearance in Bournemouth, which would be circa 1966, the programme guide for the theatre, mentioned the previous years show, in 1965, & think there was a colour picture of her on stage singing into the microphone, although not 100 % certain of this though.

Over the years during the 1960's/70's, she had some friends who lived on the Isle of Wight, but she did not know the IOW very well, so when speaking on telephone to her beforehand, she asked my parents & I, if we knew the Island, which in parts we did, haveing spent many day trips/holidays there during the 1950's/early 60's etc, so when she drove down to see us, I went with her in her car to near Portsmouth Dockyard area, parked the car in nearby street,  used the passenger ferry accross to Ryde pier, then walked up the half mile long pier to Esplanade, where we got on a Bus to take us to venue, & found her friends, where we had such a nice pleasant day, with the weather just right as well, before returning to my home in late evening, when she stayed the night with us, before returning to her London home next day.
Even when travelling on public transport,  Ferrys/uses etc), no one seemed to know who she was, no autographs either.!

I sometimes wonder what might have happened after my parents had passed on, what the situation would have been between us if she had lived longer instead of passing away herself in late 1989.....

(Mr Kinchen has two copies of "Cockleshell Heroes" available at £10 each, so if anyone is interested, please write to the email address for more details.)

Here are some of Mr Kinchen's Yana records and films:-

Four- pack CD set, 'Lipstick, Nylons, Petticoats, & Stilettoes"  Brit girls of 1950s, made by Acrobat Music group Ltd, in 2008, (purchased by me in branch of HMV).

On CD No.1, Yana sings Climb up the wall.
On CD No.4,  Yana sings 'If you dont love me.'

On Records I have:  'Climb up the wall'/'If you dont love me'

'Mr. Wonderful'/'Too close for comfort'/

'Small Talk' / Something happened to my heart'.

Cinderella LP:-

Solo :-  'In my own little corner',  'A lovely night'

In the film 'Cockleshell Heroes', ( made in 1955),  she sings 'The London I love'.

In film 'Zarak',  she sings 'Climb up the wall'.

In 'Interpol'  she sings "Anyone for love"

There is another song she sang, called 'Mama & Papa', but not heard that one.

She also did duets with Tommy Steele in the Pantomime 'Cinderella' in 1957/58 in Colliseum theatre.

I have also been told that she appeared in Talk of the Town in Leister square in 1962, appeared in issue of Melody Maker in 1963, & 'Titbits' mag circa 1973 as well.

I still have copy of both video of 'Cockleshell Heroes', as well as spare copy of 'TV Mirror' for 1956, which includes Black/White picture of her in long gown/dress.

Mr Kinchen also has the following items relating to Yana, should anyone be interested:-

Tis me again, hope you do not mind, but following my previous communication with you, I mentioned that I have some spare copies of various books on TV/Radio/Film stars, which of course include our lovely 'Yana' amongst them, details of which are as follows:-


Title.        Year.    Qty.    Page No.

ATV Show book.  Late 1950s.  One.  16.

Your Record stars.  Ditto.  Three. 11.

Top Record stars.  Ditto.  One.    15.

TV Mirror annual.  1956.    Two.  150.

'Cockleshell Heroes' VHS Video.  Two. 

              "BEST OF BRITISH" MAGAZINE INFORMATION


The dates when 'Yana' was mentioned/featured in copies of 'Best of British' magazine, are for :-

January 2005, (Page 8),

March 2005,  (Page 23; letter),

May 2005,    (Page 69, letter),

August 2005,  (Pages 12/13, feature).

In 2005, the postal address of the magazine, was:-  Bank Chambers,

                27A,  Market place,

                MARKET DEEPING,

                Lincs.

                PE68EA.

                Tel:-  01778-342814/380906.

They might have back copies still available if you get in contact with them.

Their E-Mail address is :-

Mail@British.fsbusiness.Co.UK  

"BEST OF BRITISH"  MAGAZINE PICTURE, MR J. KINCHEN:-

If  you manage to get hold of back issues/copies of the 'Best of British' mags for certain months in 2005, you will see a Black/White photograph owned by the person who compiled the article, the picture was taken by me in Yana's London Flat of the time, in Kensington, just off Exhibtion road area, behind one of the many Museums in that area, although did not take any photos of her home, just Yana herself, in the Kitchen, 'perched' on a Bar stool, but did not want the photo to look 'posed' type, so had to think of way around it to look natura etc.
In order to solve the problem, I found a small cardboard box on small table in the Hallway, probably like an ordinary shoebox etc, & wondered what was inside it, so lifted the lid for quick 'peep', to discover lots of small fluffy soft balls, simuler in size to a Golf ball etc.
This gave me the suitable idea of what to do, in order to ge an 'un-posed' picture.
I waited until one late afternoon when she was preparing herself for an early evening appearance in a nightclub,  got the idea of useing some of these small soft 'Golf balls' screwed up in one of my hands, & after altering some of the lights in ceiling of her Kitchen, got her to sit on the stool, & just as I was about to take the picture, with other hand, I threw these soft balls up in the air, which took her by surprise, causeing her to look away from me, & up in direction of the balls,  with her eyes upwards, I took the picture,
resulting in a natural look about it.!
A bit cunning perhaps on my part @ the time, but it seem to have done the trick though.!
The lights in her Kitchen, were several that each 'swivelled' on a chrome bar, to get best results, & was done when I stayed with her whilst recovering from my back injury I sustained in an accident in early 1960's, so this would be around Autumn of 1963 I guess when pictures were taken by me.
Trying to get her to sit still when perched on a stool was bit of nightmare,
as she was always wiggleing about, & had a giggle as well.

MR KINCHEN REMEMBERS YANA IN THE 1960s
Looking through some personel notes/letters I had from my little friend several years ago now, I might be able to fill in some missing details of her daily life in the 1960's etc.
Her childrens clothing shop opened in Uxbridge road in Hayes, Middlesex, either in late March or early April of 1961, although not sure how long she had it though.  She called it 'Yana Ltd', which seems appropiate enough, & when she had a bit of spare time, used to serve customers from behind the counter.!
The mystery about her car numberplate being used in 1961 by the Russian spaceman whilst he was doing a tour in 1961, Yana met him the day before he returned home to the USSR,  presented him with the numberplates from her car,  had to wait 3 days for replacements, so that she was mobile again.
As far as her own animals are concerned, her original 4 Poodle dogs answered to the names of Katrina, Lutrec, Puppy-Doll, & Turk, plus later she also had a Boxer dog called Charlie.
Her Budgie was called 'Davie'!
All this in her London Flat, a complete 'madhouse' perhaps.!
Her favourite flowers were
Violets.

The music played as an interduction to her act, either in theatre or on TV, was called 'The Yana theme', & was specially written for her by Felix King, who dedicated it to her.
The longest season she did in one show in a theatre, lasted 22 weeks, perhaps in Blackpool, & was first UK female artist to be invited to return there the following year.
Sometime during either late 1960 or early 1961, Yana was the mystery guest appearing on the TV panal game 'What's my line'?, but unlucky not to win & get a certificate.

Pamella 'Yana' Guard.

 
   
16-02-32  --  21-11-89.

     Left this world much to soon.

    Very sadly missed by all who knew her

    Always in our thoughts.

    Sleep tight my little Princess.

                RIP.
                xxx
                  X
                  JK.


              ------o-----


YANA'S 80th BIRTHDAY: MR J. KINCHEN REMEMBERS

Remembering our little Princess, 'Yana', who was born on this date, 16th February 1932,
who would have reached age of 80 years today if she had still been with us.

Very fondly remembered by those who knew her between 1932 & 1989, when she lost her battle for life.  Very sadly missed by everyone who came into contact with this stunningly beautiful lady, still sleeping.

Rest in peace my little sweetie pie.


Pamella Yana Guard.


        16-02-32  -  21-11-89.

 

 

JOHN HARRISON'S MEMORIES

YANA AND YURI                   by John Harrison

 

In 1903aat 116/3, I wrote about Yana Guard and the mystery of her having a car with YG 1 at the same time as Yuri Gagarin visited Britain in 1961 and was carried in a Rolls Royce also bearing YG 1. Furthermore, Noel Woodall’s “Celebrities” published in 1962 suggested that Yana had heard of this duplication and gone to see Yuri Gagarin whilst he was in Britain and presented him with a set of her YG 1 plates. This seemed improbable as Mr Gagarin had only spent three days in Britain and that had included a visit to Manchester.

 

On a recent trip up to Warrington to clear my father’s house, I took a bit of “time out” and visited the Manchester Transport Museum. I had not taken enough reading material up for the weekend and at the museum there was a table of old magazines, etc for sale. I picked up an old copy of “Diecast Collector” as it had an article on Vauxhall models as I was researching an article for the same magazine on Vauxhall E-Type models. It was not, however, that article that proved to be the most significant one in the magazine. There was another article by a John Kinchen about Dinky gift sets. This included a panel saying that many of the sets featured in the article had been given to him by Yana with whom he and his family had struck up a close friendship. At last I had a lead to pursue to resolve this mystery.

 

Through the former editor of “Diecast Collector”, Mike Forbes whom I know, I e-mailed John Kinchen and received the following most helpful reply:

 

“The mix-up over the registration number YG 1 appearing on two different vehicles at same time, during the Russian spaceman’s visit to the United Kingdom was due to an error by Ernest Marples who, as then Minister of Transport, gave permission for it to be used whilst the spaceman was doing his tour.
From what I understand and can remember, my friend (Yana) and the proper registered owner at the time of YG 1 spotted a picture of the vehicle carrying the spaceman, in a newspaper and got in touch with the Ministry of Transport to find out what was happening. In the end, my friend drove to London, met the spaceman and presented the original plates for him to take back to the USSR, whilst ordering replacement plates to fit on her then vehicle, a blue Mercedes Benz 220 SE convertible. There was I think, a mention of this in one of the London daily newspapers of the time, although I am not sure which paper it was, being that this all happened half century ago.”

John did send me further information about Yana, a lady of whom he clearly had fond memories, but this would take us somewhat outside the scope of 1903aat. What is clear is that we now know how the mistake of the duplication occurred (no wonder they coined the slogan, “Marples must go”!) and that, though Yuri Gagarin was only in Britain for three days, she did manage to meet him and present him with a set of plates.

In the original article I suggested that Yana Guard probably decided to get the YG 1 plate as a result of her relationship with George Formby who had GF 1 and 2. John Kinchen advises me that he has A3 JRK as his cherished number – I wonder if he got the idea of having such a number from Yana Guard!  John has signed up as a 1903aat subscriber incidentally.

 

JAMES DAVIES REMEMBERS YANA

Here are James's memories of Yana at the Queen's Theatre, Blackpool:-

James remembers Yana when he was a stage hand working on tabs and mikes when he worked on the George Formby show. He said he worked for Ray Brace who was the stage manager, and who was the best boss he had ever worked for.

James had the task of helping Yana onto a rostron in the centre of the stage where she sang her songs. After Yana sang, she went up to the flies to see Fred and the lads and have a natter. She was the most down to earth star James ever met. James said Ray (Brace) was right to say that everyone loved her, and James said he loved her from the first night he saw her on stage, and has loved her ever since.

Many thanks to James for these great memories.

 

CATHY ELDER REMEMBERS YANA

Cathy Elder remembers Yana very well, and was called "Yana the second":-

Hello, I would like to go onto Yana Tribute page please.  I remember Yana from an early age, and people still call me Yana the second, as I looked like her, even wore her clothes,

Thank you, Cathy Elder,  a very devoted fan, and always will be. x

 

 

 

 

DEREK CHIVERS IN CYPRUS & YANA

Derek Chivers of the Suffolk Regiment remembers lovely Yana in Cyprus.  (1958/1959).

Many thanks to Derek for these great memories:

On a more light-hearted note Derek recalls the visit of Yana, a very popular UK singer of the time.

” The visit of Yana was wonderful and she cheered us all up with her singing and afterwards she was given an escort to return her to the Ledra Palace Hotel but for some unknown reason somebody fired a few shots at the Hotel, there were no injuries, the shots just made a few marks on the wall but because of that a 7 platoon lorry and its driver were instructed to escort Yana to her next venue.  Of course guess who was looking over the cab in his usual position, but good old Derek. The trip was to the King George Hotel in Famagusta and luckily was very peaceful so  I managed to see a little more of Cyprus. After sitting down in the hotel and having a quick drink with Yana and her crew we returned to camp.”

“That’s about it for now I think I have covered most things which should show what our lives were like in those days but I wouldn’t change it because I found a lot of good friends in those days and learnt a lot about life.”

 

 

 

BILL HUGGINS REMEMBERS YANA

Here is a picture me, my sister and Yana.  Picture was taken in 1959 in Edinburgh when I was 5 and Janice was 4.  
I had been photographed with Yana earlier that year on Princess Street, Edinburgh about 4 months before because I was wearing a kilt.  My Mum and Dad were both fans,  so this was a meet up for them.
 
Bill Huggins