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Olive Robinson - Obituary - 12/06/2020

We have been informed of the sad news that Olive Robinson passed away on 18th April 2020 at the age of 95.

Olive Robinson was one of the most talented skaters of the 1940's, who sadly does not appear much in the record books.

Olive began her skating career at the Purley rink near her home in Coulsdon and joined the NSA in 1939.

She quickly progressed through her skating levels and by May 1939 had passed her Prelim, Bronze and Inter Silver figure and free tests.

By the time Olive passed her Gold figure and free tests on 20th May 1941, aged 16, she also had Silver Dance and Silver English Style Figures. Olive was now skating under the tutelage of Jaques Gerschwiler and was described in Skating World as “one of the most outstanding free skaters of the day".

The suspension of the Championships during the war years prevented Olive’s contention for the Ladies crown that she had been predicted to win. Sadly, she did not go on to win the title but instead turned professional and entered the NSA British Professional Ladies Championship, in 1946, with "the best performance of her career". Subsequently, she was also the 1951 World Professional Pair Championship, skating with Bernard Spencer.

When the war ended Olive was regularly in demand for exhibitions during the interval at Wembley Lions Ice Hockey matches. She starred in many ice shows in Europe and Asia including Armand Perren's “Ice Caprice” in Brighton, 1947 and “Ice Follies of 1949” in Denmark (pictured below). She skated in “Holiday on Ice” from 1952 to 1954 and in Claude Langdon’s production of “Cinderella" at the Empress Hall Ice show in 1955, both with Bernard Spencer.

Olive’s daughter, Julie, sadly passed away in 2019. Olive is survived by her grandchildren and son, Richard.

Written by Nesta Davies and Elaine Hooper


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