‘April in New York. The opening of the World’s Fair - and YOU could be there.’
What an invitation for Gazette readers, heralded in a full page article published exactly 50 years ago this week.
It was, said the banner headline “a holiday of a lifetime sponsored by your family newspaper.”
And, this stateside reader trip was to start from Squires Gate “thereby eliminating tiresome journeys to London or Manchester”.
Highlighting sightseeing tours of New York, Washington, Boston, Philadelphia and, across the border into Canada to see Niagara Falls, the article stressed: “Blackpool should be as internationally-minded as possible. Travel reaches, broadens and influences.
“We would like to think of this sponsored visit as doing our part in keeping our readers ‘with it’ and a jump ahead of the competition.
“For nearly everyone in the group it will be the first time in America and we have planned accordingly.
“You will travel in a group from this area: people speaking the same language and often sharing the same interests.”
So what was the cost?
Readers were told: “The holiday has not been designed extravagantly, nor have we economised to the extent of spoiling the ship for a ha’porth of tar. You will get value for money.”
The price of the trip was £234, which does not sound much today. But Google that figure for an estimated conversion for today’s economy and suggestions range from £4,150 using the retail price index to £8,770 using average earnings.
Bookings for the 15-day holiday could be made after obtaining a brochure at any of The Gazette and associated newspapers’ offices across the Fylde coast or at any one of five local travel agencies.
These were town centre agents Luxitours, Topping Street; English-Continental Travels, Talbot Road; and Frames, Abingdon Street; Percivals, Red Bank Road, Bispham; and Howorths, Victoria Street, Fleetwood.
Were you one of the readers who sampled the American “dream” on this holiday, who spent a whole day at the World’s Fair on April 23, the day after its official opening? Do you still have treasured photographs in your album? If so, why not share you memories and photographs - email address below.