Exposed: Something funny going on in 1960s Ladybird books

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Who doesn't love Ladybird Books? I know I do. The mere sight of one of those little books is enough to stir nostalgic feelings in many people. Re-discovering one is often accompanied by the words, "Ohhh... this takes me back". And they've also stoo...

Hippies - Hypocrisy and "Happiness"

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3 July 2013 While skimming through a 1969 edition of Reader's Digest magazine, I came across this two-page 'advertisement' for a free booklet offering guidance on one of the great issues of the time. With the Swinging Sixties still in full swing, a...

A Very Special Ambulance

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29 June 2013 As I hinted at in my blog about the fire engine (see below), there's a second half to the story. I explained that my Dad worked at the huge Swindon Railway Works. Specifically, he worked in its on-site Fire Station, where he was both a...

A Very Special Fire Engine

 by cartercollectables on  |
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25 June 2013 I was 15 when my father died, and so I have only childhood memories of him. But one of the most cherished of those memories involves this fire engine. Like many Swindonians before him, my Dad worked at the huge railway works in Swindon...

Don't try this at home. No, really! DON'T!

 by cartercollectables on  |
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19 June 2013 While skimming through an edition of Practical Householder magazine from 1957, I stumbled across this little piece of advice. With so many people buying corrugated asbestos sheeting to use as roofing for their sheds, etc, the magazine ...

Auntie Jean's Phone

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27 May 2013 From time to time, anyone who collects old things will inevitably stop and think about the untold human stories attached to some of them. I do it frequently. I pick up an inanimate object, pause, and think illogically to myself: 'If onl...

The Beatles at Abbey Road Studios

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16 May 2013 If I was ever a guest on BBC Radio's Desert Island Discs, I would first need to check if there is a rule against all eight of my chosen favourite recordings being by the same group. Such is the quality and variety of The Beatles' music,...

Spot the Ball

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15 May 2013 If you think about it, 'Spot the Ball' was a strange name for these weekly competitions run by pools and other gambling companies. You could never actually spot the ball - because it was the one thing not in the picture. The object o...

How Much is that in Old Money?

 by cartercollectables on  |
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24 April 2013 Unless you're at least as old as me, you'll probably know very little about the pounds, shillings and pence currency used in the UK before 1971. You will naturally be comfortable with the perfectly logical notion that a pound is made ...

Topo Gigio

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10 April 2013 You would have to be, like me, in your 50s to have any memory of Topo Gigio. I have only vague memories of seeing him on ITV in the late 1960s. As his entry in Wikipedia confirms, he was a puppet mouse famous in many European countri...

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