Ten Years Ago
Following an anonymous tip-off, officers from the regional Drugs Squad raided the Nature Table of a village primary school in rural Wiltshire. Three seedlings were removed for further tests and one adult taken in for questioning.
Twenty Years Ago
Teams of arbitrators and trained counsellors were sent in to a Yorkshire Liquorice Works where talks had broken down between unions and management over the introduction of two new colours for the little round bits stuck on certain items in the confectionery range. Matters had come to a head in the previous week when it was discovered that gift boxes had been leaving the factory labelled 'Allsorts Except the Sort You Want'.
Fifty Years Ago
Connoisseurs of food and wine thronged the glittering West End launch of the latest book from popular hostess Marge Grissole. 'Fifty Things To Do With Mashed Potato' (following on the success of 'Fifty Things To Do With Gravy') came packed with new ideas from the author described by her publisher in his welcoming speech as 'the one bright star in British cooking today'.
On stage go-go dancers did The Mashed Potato. Below them conversation sparkled as the Blue Nun flowed and waiters in brown jackets circulated with trays of sandwiches pommes duchesse along with the writer's signature savoury tartlets topped with lashings of piped potato.
Eighty Years Ago
Self-taught amateur meteorologist Ernest Prigley published his annual report releasing data on significant weather patterns for the previous year. Statistics were compiled from the recordings of two weather stations in his Hertfordshire garden on 364 days (on 15th March 1934 the author was prevented from accessing data by the extreme density of the fog). Among the more noteworthy observations listed were the following: rainfall in May was more than 2% up on that for the same period for all of the seven previous years. Sunshine was recorded on 219 days of the year, coinciding each time with a marked rise in temperature within the control area. On eight occasions cloud formations over the author's greenhouse bore a marked resemblance to dairy cattle and once to Stanley Baldwin.