Blackpool nostalgia in 1974: Bread strike, Lights experiment and lost boat riddle

Here's a look at some of the stories that were making the headlines back in 1974

Monday, 18th November 2019, 5:00 pm
Blackpool Lifeboat and the crew in the 1970s

A shortage of small loaves in bread strike

A bread strike was beginning to bite as housewives faced the prospect of a shortage of the food staple.

The strike at the Mother’s Pride bakery in Threlfall Road was in its third day as a national dispute remained unresolved.

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Mother's Pride Factory in Threlfall Road

The manager at E.H. Booth’s Normoss branch, Mr Heap, told the Evening Gazette they were short of bread.

He said that there was only a dozen of their quota of large sliced loaves delivered and they had been warned that the situation could worsen in the coming days.It was a distinct possibility that loaf rationing could entail.

At the Red Bank Road branch of Tesco, supplies were reported as being ‘a little bit short’, but were still coming in from other sources.

The managing director of Streets Bakery, David Rees, said he had been approached by some shops in the Fylde to supply them, but added that many local shops are supplied by local bakers and that skeleton staffs at some bakeries were only supplying large loaves. A spokesperson for Woolworths said they were not receiving loaves they would call ‘small’.

A retro shot of Blackpool Illuminations photographed from North Pier

Lost boat riddle after teenager hears blast and raises alarm

Blackpool lifeboat conducted a night time search after a mystery blast at sea off Little Bispham.

The alarm was raised by a teenager who heard the bang while he was nightlining on the beach near Shore Road.

The 14-year-old was digging for worms when he heard a big bang, much bigger than a firework, and he could see a prawner type boat a few hundred yards out. It had a light which moved like a searchlight and as he flashed his own lamp at it, it flashed back. The alarm was raised.

Coastguard John Kenyon went to the water’s edge and saw the boat about a mile offshore but he couldn’t tell if it was anchored or not.

Blackpool lifeboat launched at 9pm and searched the area until midnight before returning to base. It was guided to the search area by police car headlights shining out to sea from the promenade.

The crew fired five parachute flags to light up the area during the sweep but did not spot anything. On shore, the coastguard also fired one to illuminate the beach area.

Mr Kenyon said the boat was 15ft to 20ft long and was showing deck lights. No reports of boats overdue were made.

Plans for Lights to shine on discussed

Blackpool Illuminations shining for an extra month was on the cards.

At a meeting of the Attractions and Leisure Committee, members agreed that the possibility of extending the lights to the end of November should be considered for one season, as an experiment.

The idea was suggested by Coun Edmund Wynne who said they should seriously consider taking the Lights further on into the winter months.

And Coun Aklf Hudson was quite sure the Hotels Association would make a bigger contribution to the fund if the Lights were extended.

Dates for the Lights for 1976 to 1979 were also agreed and it was documented that for the following year, the Lights were expected to cost £287,870.