McIlroys is often spoken of fondly by people living in Swindon as one of the best stores to ever grace the town centre.

The first of a chain was founded in town by draper William McIlroy in 1875.

The store was famous for its renowned ballroom which opened in 1930s and hosted both the Beatles and The Rolling Stones, as well as being the home of Swindon's first lending library.

But it closed in 1998, leaving a lingering hole in the area's retail offering (especially with House of Fraser and Debenhams also closing in recent years) and, more importantly, a lot of memories.

After the Advertiser published pictures of the store from Swindon Library's Local Studies archive, many of its readers responded by sharing their memories of it.

Here are some of the best and favourite memories of the beloved former store.

Kaitlin Gabriel said: "Their selection of cross stitch canvases.

"People don’t believe I’ve three original Lowry’s. Until they see the three canvases."

Sally Parkin said: "The Christmas window display was stunning, a visual delight!"

Natalie Mckee said: "Definitely one that I miss, such a fabulous store.

"I also miss trying on the hats in British Home Stores , and buying clothes in Rhapsody and doing freezer shopping with my mum in Bejams."

Theresa Paterson Sheridan said: "My first job was at Mcilroys, I worked in the restaurant along with Maureen, Sue, Dave, Dot, Jean, Breda, Joanne, Janet, Shirley and Mr Castle and his daughter Sue. Sorry if I forgot anyone.

"Met my good friend Christine nee Richardson there, then there was Julie from the lingerie department.

"They were such good times. We used to go over in the mornings and bring back the trays of fresh cream cakes from Castles the Bakery and then choose one for our morning break.

"The food was so delicious too. Lovely memories.

Ronnie Armour said: "Everything about it, especially the staircase."

Lynn Claridge said: "Choosing sewing patterns with my mum. She made me lovely dresses."

Ruth Wood said: "I had a Saturday job in the hairdressers, loved every minute.

"It was so long ago, old women were still coming in for a blue or pink rinse!"

Linda Dyer-people said: "Best department store ever! Certainly in Wiltshire.

Beautiful staircase and haberdashery department and the "Real Farther Christmas" too

"Also remember when pop groups were there etc."

Mark Evans said: "A throwback to the days when most towns had a quality department store.

"McIlroys was no exception, it was a pleasure to shop there."

Irena Dicks said: "Loved this shop especially the fabric department.

"Also enjoyed eating jacket potatoes with cauliflower cheese with my friend at lunchtime when we had a day at college.

"Good times and happy memories.

Claire Glazer said: "Having a drink of orange with my mum and Nan in the cafe. And of course the staircase."

Karen Baker said: "I love the iconic staircase. I loved the haberdashery. I had my ears pierced there.

"Plus's my mum worked in the wages department."

Helen Crystal Jackson said: "The staircase was amazing. Always took the girls to see santa here too. They always had a lovely Christmas Grotto and beautiful displays."