The Hartlepool youngsters who were reaching for the stars 30 years ago

Christmas was coming and so was a place in the headlines for these Hartlepool, East Durham and Billingham youngsters.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 11 December, 2018, 10:00
Hartlepool Sixth Form students who cooked up a Christmas storm for the elderly.

Today. we take a look at the rising stars who made an impression in the Hartlepool Mail in December 1988.

First were a trio of town schoolgirls who formed their own act called Mad Conductor. They were 11-year-olds Michelle Horsley and Nicola Phelan and Vikki Young, 10, and they qualified for the televised section of a BBC competition to find the best young UK talent.

Students at Roseberry Juniors who were making contacts with Russia and NASA in 1988.

Mad Conductor were the only North East entrants in the BB1 Going Live Young Entertainer of the Year.

The schoolgirls had built up their own act which featured both classical mime and ballet. And to give you an indication of how well they had done, nearly 3,000 youngsters applied to be a part of the show. Hundreds turned up for the auditions but only a handful were chosen to appear in front of the cameras.

Michelle’s mum Sheila said at the time: “I am over the moon. The girls have been very lucky.”

Mad Conductor were due to be filmed for their performance in January 1989 but can anyone remember how they did on the show?

Mad Conductor who were ready for their TV debut in 1988.

Get in touch and tell us more by emailing chris.cordner@jpimedia.co.uk.

Another promising talent in 1988 was Elizabeth Millican who won a place in the England under-18 netball squad. She was a pupil at Hartlepool Sixth Form College where she was a member of the team.

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She was also a member of the SAKS netball club, the North region under-21 squad and the North East Centre of Excellence. It was quite a CV but it was also great reward for Elizabeth’s hard work and daily training.

Her coach, Margaret Seed, said the England call-up was “the result we have been working for together over 18 months.”

Next were intrepid youngsters from Roseberry Junior School in Billingham who contacted the Russian Embassy to voice their concerns over a satellite which had been experiencing problems in space.

No sooner had they written, they got a reply from Russia’s First Secretary at the time to assure that the satellite posed no problems.

But it wasn’t a first correspondence for the big-thinking Roseberry School youngsters. They were also involved in letter writing to NASA after similar worries over an American satellite.

Another rising star was Tony Kelly who was a hit in the kitchen. The Mail spotlighted the 17-year-old when he started getting distinctions for his catering skills.

He had hopes to one day be a chef at the Ritz or the Hilton.

Last but not least were Hartlepool Sixth Form students who cooked up lots of Christmas puddings that Christmaas and sold them to raise money for Help The Aged.

Get in touch and tell us more about all of our young stars.

If any of these stories bring back memories, email chris.cordner@jpimedia.co.uk.