100 Years Ago – 1918

There was a persistent rumour that the German Emperor had abdicated, as important movements proceeded in Austria. According to a Copenhagen telegram the Ministerial Council had decided to introduce national autonomy in order to make President Wilson’s stipulation fait accompli. Celebrating its anniversary at Victoria Hall, Bolton Road, Bradford’s Mission secretary, Mr. Robert R. Hammond interrupted its proceedings to discuss the chapels bank balance of £6, declaring that he hoped the party could raise a further £110. Meanwhile, the “National Food Journal” had to explain to the British public how to use the new ration books. The red coupons on leaf 5 had to be used for the purchase of jam and marmalade only from a registered dealer and persons between the age of six and eighteen were entailed to supplementary ration plus an extra leaf of coupons.

85 Years Ago – 1933

Britain had won the battle for the world’s motor markets, with the star of the show being a Bradford-made Jowett motor-car. Prince George, accompanied by ex-King Alfonso, congratulated all British manufacturers on their achievements and announced that record sales had been achieved. The Prime Minister, Mr. Macdonald was celebrating his 67th birthday hard at work at No. 10 Downing Street. The oldest Prime Minister since Sir Henry Campbell-Bannerman, who become Premier in 1905, Mr. MacDonald had time for just a brisk walk around St. James’ Park before attending a meeting on the disarmament crisis. And owing to the sudden death of Alderman Edward Siddle, representatives of the City Council had met once again in the Lord Mayor’s parlour to make another choice. Captain A. W. Brown, as reported in the later editions of the “Telegraph and Argus” had accepted their unanimous invitation to allow himself to be nominated as Lord Mayor.

50 Years Ago - 1968

The Telegraph & Argus October 10, 1968 reported that a three-and-a-half-hour meeting had taken place between the Prime Minister, Mr. Harold Wilson, and Mr. Ian Smith aboard the assault ship Fearless in Gibraltar Harbour to discuss the Rhodesian problem. Similar discussions had taken place in December 1966, with both parties failing to reach an agreement. This time however, Mr. Wilson had managed to add a sixth principle to the five he had previously enunciated.

On October 11, 1968, after being scrutinised by Bradford council officials and the T&A, Mr. David Ennals, Minister of State for Social Services was once again questioned about local funding for education during his tour of Ryan Street Junior School. Probing the Minister this time was the chairman of the city’s educational service Alderman Tom Hall. Refusing to comment further on the Governments new urban programme, Mr. Ennals, replied that it was clear that Alderman John Horsfall, leader of the city council had not understood the proposals and the that the “Telegraph and Argus” had understood even less.

60 Years Ago – 1958

Bradford’s best loved department store was celebrating its Golden Jubilee. The department store which first opened at 61, 63 and 65 Kirkgate, was the product of ten years of spadework, a gruelling struggle through slump and war where every penny counted. Quickly developing a reputation for excellent service, the company moved into larger premises on Manningham Lane in 1930. Pope Pius XII, spiritual ruler of 450 million Roman Catholics, had died at the age of 82. His death, at his summer palace at Castel Gandolfo, occurred 19 hours after a second stroke within two days. And Miss Shirley Roper felt like a modern Cinderella after been chosen for the role of Press Ball Princess. Shirley, aged 23, who came from Draughton Street, Bankfoot, had always wanted to go to the Ball but could afford a ticket. Now she had the important role of giving out prizes during the presentation.

35 Years Ago – 1983

Famous sons of the Bradford, author J. B. Priestley and artist David Oxtobs, had pledged their support towards the historic Paper Hall’s Restoration Fund by donating an array of autographed books by Priestley, a former pupil at Belle Vue Boys’ School and his authoress wife Jacquetta Hawkes. Magic Mushroom’ mania had swept through a well-known grammar school after children had taken to swallowing the hallucinatory fungi. Unfortunately for worried parents there was no law against taking the seasonal mushroom known as Liberty Cap. And the Civic Society had joined in a battle to save Thornton’s crumbling Walls of Jericho in, after the Department of the Environment had ordered a public enquiry over plans to knock down the 36ft. high dry-stone walls.