THE 1938 Empire Exhibition at Glasgow’s Bellahouston Park was opened by the King on Tuesday, May 3. As this newspaper reported, “a wave of excited people in gay holiday mood swept into the transformed park.”

It would have taken first-time visitors a while to find their bearings, so substantial was the number of pavilions and attractions. Some crowds gathered at the pavilion of the National Fitness Council for Scotland; energetic displays would be held there on different days by such organisations as the Girl Guide Association, the Women’s League of Health and Beauty, Margaret Morris Movement, Hamilton and Motherwell YMCA Girls’ Clubs, the Glasgow Keep-Fit Women’s Movement, Dennistoun Athletic Club and (right) Jordanhill Physical Training College.

The exhibition was only a couple of days old when the Herald said that three full-length pictures of nude female figures, displayed on mirrors in front of the fitness council pavilion, were to be removed, following complaints from members of the public. It was said that they were unsuitable for open display.

On the first day, a man with a paste pot had approached a pavilion official, claiming that he had been authorised to paste a covering over the figures, but this was news to the official, who declined to allow the man to proceed.

The council’s pavilion sub-committee said in a statement: “It was decided that since the size and nature of the figures are possibly inappropriate as a background for the demonstrations which are being given in the open space in front of them, they should be removed and an opportunity sought of finding a more suitable position elsewhere in the pavilion.”