Picture Past: September 8, 1967 – cave sold in auction
PUBLISHED: 16:00 09 September 2017
Buildings in Weston-super-Mare were suffering because of the town’s pigeon problem 50 years ago. The bird woes were reported in the September 8 edition of the Weston Mercury and Somerset Herald in 1967.
• There was renewed hope for the industrial expansion of Weston as a factory which had been empty for three years and which was set to be taken over.
The site, in Winterstoke Road, had been used by Henlys, which manufactured military vehicles, and its closure had resulted in a number of redundancies.
The hangar was going to be taken over a Southampton firm which manufactured large containers.
• The pigeon problem popped up in the town again and apparently the pesky birds were now destroying buildings.
Quite how they were doing that was not made clear, but Cllr Vernon Goold said: “There must be thousands of them and they are a menace to the buildings of this town.
“I know it is an unpopular topic with the old dears who take bread to them daily but our own properties, like the Town Hall, are suffering.”
A company was offering to catch and remove pigeons for £160 over an eight-week period. Around 380 birds had already been caught.
• Part of Cheddar Gorge was to be sold at an auction.
Jacob’s Ladder, an observatory tower and camera obscura were going on sale. A cave was also being offered. It had never been used commercially, but it had been used to house an aquarium.
• Weston borough councillors were considering banning hockey from the Beach Lawns.
The sport had been played there for 50 years, but some councillors feared it was posing a risk to pedestrians.
• Despite lacking facilities and staff, Weston Public Library had issued a record number of books.
In total, 16,616 people had taken out 539,359 books in 12 months, beating the previous record of 500,704 set in 1959-60.
• Major alterations were needed to the Winter Gardens’ doors after the fire authority reported a number of potential problems if there was an emergency. It needed emergency lighting and for the doors to open the other way.
• Weston was going to adopt a standard flag system to signify when it was not safe to bathe in the sea.
However, the town was rated as having one of the safest beaches in the country.
• Work had started on the £94million Hinkley Point power station after a 12-month delay caused by the economic freeze. Work was due to finish in 1972.