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To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

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djl
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To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by djl » Sun Nov 24, 2019 11:28 pm

Hope this don't breaks the regulation of the forum: how was the life in Great Britain and Northen Irland in the '50's and '60's? Since English is the only forgein language that I know, I do have some interest in that period of of U.K. history... an intresting period.
Valves (electronic tubes) are for audio what preselector gearboxes are for cars.

classiclife
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Re: To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by classiclife » Mon Nov 25, 2019 8:20 am

1968 Daimler V8-250 Saloon
DLOC East Sussex Area Representative.

Southern Classics Society Events Co-ordinator.
www.southernclassics.org.uk

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John-B
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Re: To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by John-B » Mon Nov 25, 2019 9:32 am

djl wrote:
Sun Nov 24, 2019 11:28 pm
Hope this don't breaks the regulation of the forum: how was the life in Great Britain and Northen Irland in the '50's and '60's? Since English is the only forgein language that I know, I do have some interest in that period of of U.K. history... an intresting period.
Please don't start a discussion about politics, especially Northern Ireland, it could get heated. Other aspects of GB are perfectly acceptable.
As a teenager in 1950s, it was all very grey, food rationing, drab old clothes, no central heating, girls in long print dresses with mousy curly hair with a parting and lace-up leather shoes.
1960s were astonishing, miniskirts, rock & roll, hippy culture, my first car (1934 Austin 7) I want to go back to that time :D
In 1960 I started work in an office in central Bristol and Frogmore Lane at the back was a no-go area for me after dark as it was a dark, narrow lane outside a Bowling Alley where Teddy Boys swung bicycle chains menacingly, looking for a fight.
I went to technical college one day a week where half my fellow students had long light blue Teddy Boy jackets, drainpipe trousers, winkle picker shoes and DA haircuts. The other half had grey worsted trousers with turn-ups and tweed jackets from the Co-op. No girl students at all, just young men learning bricklaying, engineering or surveying.
I don't remember much about food rationing except egg powder, suet, porridge oats, yellow cake and the traders who came round with vans once a week, the vegetable man in what looked like an ex-army van, butcher's van, baker's van, general stores after ordering by phone, milk girl from a local farm in pony and trap.

djl
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Re: To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by djl » Mon Nov 25, 2019 9:45 am

I know politc topics are prohibited from here (and politics can get hoter then a blast furnace) and I will not start political argumanets here. But since Northen Ireland is in the United Kidgdom I felt the need to ask about life in that part of the country.
But how was food rationing in the '50's? I'm curios to see how it was comparing to Romania back then (we had food rationing untill December of 1956 - white bread I think it was rationized untill a bit later). Anyway, I guess it was better then what happened in Romania in the '80's.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qzpPy9hJYA8
Valves (electronic tubes) are for audio what preselector gearboxes are for cars.

Chris_R
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Re: To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by Chris_R » Mon Nov 25, 2019 10:26 pm

Look on youtube and search out a series of short films titled "Look at Life...…" there are several of these that look at different parts of life in the UK.

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Re: To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by Sydsmith » Tue Nov 26, 2019 10:36 am

Having been born in the early 40's I do remember the UK in the 50's and 60's, contrary to what folks today think they have not seen austerity, no matter how badly off they may be or think they are today, they do not have a clue what having to manage was back then.

Even if you had the money you could not buy what you wanted, what you had was your ration and that was that, though living near the country area of Herefordshire, there was a thriving black market in butter, home cured bacon and eggs, at a price.

Early 50's we had coupons for everything, as a kid sweets were rationed, a Mars bar was a once in a while treat that was cut into chunks and shared between my siblings and me. All the staples were rationed, butter, cheese, sugar etc and came in large blocks or sacks and sold in ration sizes by the shop keeper. Butter and cheese were sold wrapped in grease proof paper sugar in blue paper bags, there were no adverts or brands.

Every one who could kept chickens, grew their own vegetables and made their own jam and chutney.

Petrol was rationed, a new car was unknown.

We lived in a modern house but still had to bring coal in from the coal shed and light a fire every morning in the winter, frost on the inside of my bedroom window was a regular winter feature, only one room in the house was heated. Hot water was by back boiler and we shared a bath on a Sunday night, eldest first. In the summer the fire was lit on a Sunday to produce bath water and on a Monday for the weekly cloths wash.

No TV of course so we listened to the radio played records, cards or other games in the winter we made models and developed our stamp collection, we spent the best part of the summer months outside till dusk.

There was no such thing as ice cream, bananas and oranges were a Christmas treat and a prize Christmas present was one Dinky toy. Mum did the washing with a dolly in the bath. Only posh people had a phone in the house the rest of us went down the kiosk with our tuppence for a call, press button B caller. There were almost no fridges either in homes or food shops.

I do remember the end of rationing and Walls ice cream coming to our local shop, the choice was a wafer or if you were posh a choc ice, or you could buy a family block and a pack of wafers, I particularly remember Neapolitan was a treat.

As kids we walked or rode a tatty bike every where, a bus ride was a treat, only very posh people solicitors school teachers and professionals had a car.

I remember looking in envy through the local Ford and Austin dealers window at Consuls Zephers Anglias A30's A40's and just up the road Rover 90's and 100's.

I remember the Mini and the Ford Popular being introduced, both just under £500, as a teenager the Popular did not get a look in the Mini was the big must have.

Music played a big part in our lives and the moment Billy Hayley hit the road with Rock around the Clock, that was it, a trip to the Cinema was always a treat and the new age of rock with way out music hair styles and clothes certainly gave us all a thrill.

What was very different in those days was that a large proportion of adults and some kids smoked, people suffered a lot and died young from chest and lung disorders but there were almost no overweight people, rationing kept us all slim.

What are the biggest gains in modern society? Central Heating, warm homes, washing machines, fridges, choice of food, TV mobile, phones and electronic devices, a much superior health system and medication, a total transformation in motor car design and much much wider car and home ownership. to name a few.

No way can a few words describe our lives back then, and what I have written is just a peek at life back then. For my part, despite the after war austerity and rationing I had a great childhood, most of it spent either out doors or in the winter making stuff. They were tough but very good days and we learned a lot of practical skills through our hobbies and our out door play. Syd

classiclife
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Re: To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by classiclife » Tue Nov 26, 2019 10:46 am

Hello Syd,

That is a brilliant snap shot and insight from a personal perspective, well done and thanks for taking the time to pitch it.

Regards.

Richard.
1968 Daimler V8-250 Saloon
DLOC East Sussex Area Representative.

Southern Classics Society Events Co-ordinator.
www.southernclassics.org.uk

djl
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Re: To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by djl » Tue Nov 26, 2019 12:38 pm

@ Sydsmith : but when did you started to heat the whole house and take a bath more the 1-2 times a week?
I can't imagine not having at least 3-4 showers per week in the winter and daily on the summer.
Valves (electronic tubes) are for audio what preselector gearboxes are for cars.

Ozzsp250
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Re: To live in Britain in the '50's and '60's

Post by Ozzsp250 » Tue Nov 26, 2019 3:42 pm

Remember much of this growing up in the same period in New Zealand.

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