Picture Past: January 26, 1968 – number of men out of work increases
PUBLISHED: 16:00 27 January 2018
Male unemployment and ‘sacred cows’ in local government funding made headlines in the Weston Mercury and Somerset Herald 1968. Here is the news from the January 26 edition.
• ‘Yellow peril’ was spreading through Cheddar – though it was not a disease, but the addition of more yellow lines on the village’s roads.
Police made a number of suggestions, including adding more yellow lines effectively banning parking in Cliff Street.
The parish council thought the suggestions were ‘unfortunate’.
• The number of unemployed men in Weston had increased slightly on the previous year.
In total, 873 people were out of work, 671 of them men.
This was an increase from 635 men in January 1967. Most of the unemployed men came from the building trade.
• The Searchers followed Pink Floyd and Cat Stevens by performing at the Winter Gardens. The Mercury said: “The Searchers are a group who have consistently proved themselves to be one of the best in the British pop business by their many hit records.”
• Nothing in local government should be regarded as a ‘sacred cow’ when it came to cutting expenditure, people said at a forum in Weston.
Some of those taking part said a great deal of money could be saved by reducing the ‘magnificence’ of new school buildings and buying cheaper equipment.
• An Axbridge historian suggested the sign to the town was misleading visitors.
The sign welcoming people to Axbridge said people should visit for St John Hunting Lodge and the 13th century church.
The historian said the lodge should be called a Tudor town house, and the church was not obviously 13th century as so much of it had been remodelled over the years.
• The ‘controversy’ over changes to the entertainment at the Rozel Arena was due to continue when Weston Borough Council met on the forthcoming Monday.
The council suggested moving mechanised entertainment into the Rozel, but the Hotel and Restaurants Association protested, saying it would spoil the ‘pleasant and restful area surrounding it’. Several councillors were also opposed.
• The Mercury’s history column described how in 1918 a number of rare birds were nesting in Weston, but were being shot by bird experts for identification purposes.
A reader called on them to swap the gun for a field glass.
MORE: Last week’s Picture Past.