THE black and white image was taken at 10am on Tuesday, December 4, 1962.

At its centre is Katie Boyle, an actress, TV presenter and Eurovision Song Contest host who was one of Britain’s most popular celebrities.

With her in the picture, dressed in Highland attire, are the Dagenham Girl Pipers, who were on television, radio and stage so often that they were the only pipe band most people south of the border could name.

The occasion was the opening of a new supermarket, a branch of Fine Fare, which stood in Fleming Way near the site now occupied by Debenhams.

We said: “Several hundred shoppers, some stamping their feet to keep warm, were waiting for the store to open when the famous Dagenham Girl Pipers appeared through the fog to give a short counter-marching display before forming a guard of honour for Katie.

“But there was no standing on ceremony, just a friendly smile to the crowd and then she said, sympathetically: ‘Well, don’t let us stand out here in the cold, come on in.’

“Katie cut the red ribbon and, following the pipers - under Pipe Major Peggy Iris - she toured the supermarket with its 5,000 different items on display, all the time chatting to Swindon shoppers.”

Customers had been alerted to the celebrity visit by a full-page advertisement in the Adver the day before.

The text was typical of the period: “Here’s the biggest thing that has happened to Swindon this year - housewives put on your hats and coats - grab your shopping bags and hot foot it to the fabulous new Fine Fare for the biggest cut price shopping spree that you have ever had.

“Look at the prices listed here - they are only a few of the well-known branded goods which are on sale at REAL MONEY SAVING DISCOUNT PRICES, which are guaranteed to save you MORE MONEY, EVERY WEEK.”

Special offers to tempt shoppers away from rival shops included Tate and Lyle sugar at two old pence a pound, or the equivalent of less than a penny in modern currency, provided they spent at least 10 shillings, equivalent to 50p, on other items.

First in the queue was Mrs J Cushen, who lived in Whitbourne Avenue and had attended many supermarket openings.

She said: “I got a hamper for being one of the first at an opening in Park North. Today I want to buy some goods and get Katie Boyle’s autograph for my daughter, Maureen.”

Katie Boyle died earlier this year, aged 91. Pipe Major Peggy Iris died in 2016, aged 97.