Thursday, November 24, 2011

read all about it

Much upheaval at Halibut Towers over the last few weeks, some planned, some not. More of that at tedious and unnecessary length later, but for the moment here's some by-products of a few trips up to our loft to lift up some boards and have a general root about and tidy up in advance of getting some electricians in to sort out the parlous and potentially fatal state of our wiring.

Among all the knackered old loft insulation, bits of polystyrene and wood and other assorted junk I found some bits of old newspaper that had evidently been used as makeshift packing and/or insulation back in the day. And when I say back in the day, I mean way back in the day, as upon closer inspection the bits I retrieved reasonably intact turned out to be from a copy of the South Wales Argus from Friday, January 20th, 1956. Here's a few scanned pages:

A few things to note:
  • There's a report on the first day's play in this unofficial Test match between England and Pakistan in Lahore.
  • Leslie Davey from Blaenavon was convicted of beating to death William Roberts, the man whom his wife had been "associating" with. Just to be clear for a 21st century audience, that means "fucking".
  • You could pick up a nice house in the Beechwood Park area (i.e. pretty much the exact location of Halibut Towers) for around £3,000.
  • Just to put that into perspective, a top salesman could expect to earn in excess of £1,000 per year.
There is (on the penultimate page) a list of the pubs in the Newport area where you could obtain a delicious pint of creamy Guinness (and these were the days when it was still OK to claim that it was "good for you"). Of the ones in Newport proper here's the current state of play:

  • The Cambrian Inn on Commercial Road appears to have met its demise fairly recently, as the building is still there, and still recognisably a pub, at least until recently.
  • J. Dobell and Bartholomew Ltd. on the High Street is long gone as far as I know.
  • The Griffin on Griffin Street is still there.
  • The Murenger House on the High Street is still there and remains probably the best of the city centre pubs; that said it's the only one on this short list that I've ever been in.
  • The Potter's Arms on Dock Street is now just Potters, a bit more trendy wine bar-y these days.
  • The Old Rising Sun on Shaftesbury Street is still there but is long since empty; it's on a bit of an awkward spot these days right on a roundabout under the giant Heidenheim Drive flyover.

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