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Weston-super-Mare’s Picture Past: July 14, 1967 – sonic booms echo over town after Ministry of Technology experiments

PUBLISHED: 16:00 15 July 2017

Permission was gived by the Govenors and Headmaster of Uphill School in December last year for the formation of an Army Cadet unit. Now the School Platoon, pictured above with the C.O. Capt. S.J. Carter, is flourishing.

Permission was gived by the Govenors and Headmaster of Uphill School in December last year for the formation of an Army Cadet unit. Now the School Platoon, pictured above with the C.O. Capt. S.J. Carter, is flourishing.

Archant

Sonic booms shattered the peace over Weston-super-Mare 50 years ago, and the news was reported in the Weston Mercury and Somerset Herald. Here are some of the headlines from July 14, 1967.

Weston-super-Mare A.F.C. annual Donkey Derby. The start of the Hotel Plate race, supported by local hoteliers.Weston-super-Mare A.F.C. annual Donkey Derby. The start of the Hotel Plate race, supported by local hoteliers.

Sonic booms thundered over Weston as a result of high-flying aircraft which could travel faster than the speed of sound.

The noises resulted in complaints, particularly from the town’s lifeboat crew who had rushed to the station thinking the sounds were warning maroons.

The bangs arose out of experiments conducted by the Ministry of Technology which was trying to gauge public reaction to the sound, ahead of the Concord airliner going into service. The aeroplane over Weston was the RAF Lightning.

Diary Festival winners on Young Farmers Day receive their trophies. On the left, Mr. James Thorburn presents a cup to Miss E. Diment; centre, Roger Green receives his cup from Mr. W. King and, right Tim Quick is handed the junior cup by Mr. Ken Wilkinson.Diary Festival winners on Young Farmers Day receive their trophies. On the left, Mr. James Thorburn presents a cup to Miss E. Diment; centre, Roger Green receives his cup from Mr. W. King and, right Tim Quick is handed the junior cup by Mr. Ken Wilkinson.

◘ Burnham and Highbridge Town Band was worried it would no longer be able to perform in competitions unless it could raise £1,000 for new equipment.

The manufacturers of the high-pitch instruments the band used had stopped operating, and it was proving impossible to find a replacement.

◘ Farming equipment, including electric fences, gates, tarpaulins and batteries, were being stolen from farms all over North Somerset.

Diary Festival Diary Queen, Miss Pamela Cox, and Mr. Edmund Harrison, with a prizewinning Friesian heifer owned by Mr. D. Mead, of Nut Tree Farm, Worle.Diary Festival Diary Queen, Miss Pamela Cox, and Mr. Edmund Harrison, with a prizewinning Friesian heifer owned by Mr. D. Mead, of Nut Tree Farm, Worle.

◘ A blood donor from Weston, Mr LT Bucknole, was the first person in Somerset to received a gold award for giving 50 pints of blood.

MORE: Picture Past from July 7, 1967.

Over £65 were taken at the garden fete of the Parents' Committee of Weston-Super-Mare YMCA. At one of the games are Stephen Iles, Nigel and Roy Curry and Robin Webb.Over £65 were taken at the garden fete of the Parents' Committee of Weston-Super-Mare YMCA. At one of the games are Stephen Iles, Nigel and Roy Curry and Robin Webb.

◘ A footbridge linking Dolphin Square to the seafront was delayed until after the peak holiday season. This was due to waits for Government approval, and costing difficulties.

◘ The Conservative Party took two Weston Borough Council seats from independents after a by-election in Milton and Uphill. It meant the council was made up of 18 Conservatives, seven people from Labour, five from the Ratepayers Association and two independents.

Weston-super-Mare A.F.C. annual Donkey Derby. Caroline Trapnell riding home to win the Hotel Plate on Cruett, by Condiment, out of Glass (trainer: I.B. Glassblower) and owned by the Supporters' Club.Weston-super-Mare A.F.C. annual Donkey Derby. Caroline Trapnell riding home to win the Hotel Plate on Cruett, by Condiment, out of Glass (trainer: I.B. Glassblower) and owned by the Supporters' Club.

◘ The Mercury’s Looking Back column, similar to Picture Past, reported how in 1942 the Duke of Kent had visited Weston following bomb damage. The visit had been kept a secret, but the news spread overnight and flags and bunting were hung out, many fluttering from the debris of former houses and businesses.

◘ And considerations over animal welfare clearly is not just a modern-day phenomenon as in 1867, a Mercury correspondent wrote how they were concerned about horses which were pulling trains from the junction into Weston. The writer said it was a ‘painful sight’ to see them operating with ‘great difficulty’ in the hot weather.

Hundreds of holiday-makers and residents thronged to the Beach Lawns for the ever popular Weston-super-Mare Diary Festival.Hundreds of holiday-makers and residents thronged to the Beach Lawns for the ever popular Weston-super-Mare Diary Festival.

Technical College Tennis Champions. Mr.H.O. Vaux, chairman of the College governors, presenting Naomi Card with the Wolfe Cup for women's singles. Onlookers are men's singles winner Anthony McMichael and losing finalists Kate Tilley and Victor Vann.Technical College Tennis Champions. Mr.H.O. Vaux, chairman of the College governors, presenting Naomi Card with the Wolfe Cup for women's singles. Onlookers are men's singles winner Anthony McMichael and losing finalists Kate Tilley and Victor Vann.

Over £65 were taken at the garden fete of the Parents' Committee of Weston-Super-Mare YMCA. Stall Holders Judith Taylor, Sally Webb, Hilary Smith, Glenys Hutchings and Susan Parker.Over £65 were taken at the garden fete of the Parents' Committee of Weston-Super-Mare YMCA. Stall Holders Judith Taylor, Sally Webb, Hilary Smith, Glenys Hutchings and Susan Parker.

First year pupils of Winterstoke Girls' School at their open day - Jacqueline Charmley, Lynda Thomas, Cherry Taylor, Lynda Culley, Yvonne Coombs and Christine Stanley.First year pupils of Winterstoke Girls' School at their open day - Jacqueline Charmley, Lynda Thomas, Cherry Taylor, Lynda Culley, Yvonne Coombs and Christine Stanley.

Some of the children who attended Axbridge Parish Church annual fete, held in the grounds of The Court, Axbridge.Some of the children who attended Axbridge Parish Church annual fete, held in the grounds of The Court, Axbridge.

Worle became very much aware of the musical and dramatic activity in its Secondary School when a vigorous production of Gilbert and Sullivan's Mikado was presented. Ko-Ko's young assistant (Nicholas Bridgwater), learns a fine point about executions from his master (Stephen Williams).Worle became very much aware of the musical and dramatic activity in its Secondary School when a vigorous production of Gilbert and Sullivan's Mikado was presented. Ko-Ko's young assistant (Nicholas Bridgwater), learns a fine point about executions from his master (Stephen Williams).

Ads 14th July 1967 Edition.Ads 14th July 1967 Edition.

Front Page 14th July 1967 Edition.Front Page 14th July 1967 Edition.

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