By Douglas McDonald
Claire Regan kept up a proud family tradition when she was proclaimed this year’s Nottingham Rose at the weekend, emulating her mother Anne who was crowned Nottingham’s Rose in the 1970s. Her auntie, Maria Stanley, was Midlands Rose in 1990.
Claire told The Irish World: “I think it’s still sinking in. It’s all happened so quickly because I only entered the week before.
“My mum was the Nottingham Rose when she was 20 and my auntie went all the way to Tralee in 1990 so I’m going to try and keep it up. Everyone was asking what advice they could give me and they said: ‘Just be yourself and enjoy it’. They prepped me well.”
Claire is a former professional Irish dancer who spent eight years touring with Michael Flatley’s Lord of the Dance.
She set up her own Irish dance fitness company, Fit Jig, last summer and now travels the world providing sessions. Claire displayed some of her dancing skills for her party piece.
Claire has roots are in Mayo and Tipperary and beat seven other competitors for the crown at the Greyfriars Social club.
Claire will now go on to represent Nottingham at the festival’s Regional Finals in Portlaoise at the end of May, hoping to be selected for the Rose of Tralee final in August.
The event was organised by Martin Dowd and Nicola Lynch and compere for the evening was Gerry Kennedy.