Preston in 1973 saw a car bomb alert in the town centre, residents claim Lower Penwortham doesn't exist and a pensioner loses his savings in the fire

Here's a look at some Lancashire stories and pictures from the year 1973

Wednesday, 29th August 2018, 1:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 30th August 2018, 1:21 pm
Charnock Richard patrol leader Frank Wilson gives his opinion of the cooking of 3rd Leyland Guides (from left) Jacqueline Rhodes, Susan Weedall, and Patricia Walmsley, at a cooking competition between scouts and guides from the Chorley and Leyland areas, as they faced each other during a "cook-off" in Worden Park, Leyland

Car bomb alert in Preston town centre

Police launched a major car bomb security operation in the town centre of Preston.

The alarm was raised when someone spotted a suspicious-looking parcel on the back shelf of a car, parked with its engine running in Bairstow Street.

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Residents from nearby houses were evacuated as a police squad cordoned off the street, and an urgent call went to the bomb disposal team.

Alerted officers launched a search for the owner of the vehicle, and a crowd gathered to see the town’s first operation in the present wave of bomb scares... from a safe distance.

A police spokesman said: “When we arrived the engine was still running but there was no ignition key - then the parcel on the back shelf made the situation look even more suspicious.”

But then came relief, and the panic was all over. The owner of the “terror” vehicle - a Preston workman - was traced to a nearby building.

He told police that the parcel contained nothing more dangerous than mortice locks, and a policeman explained that he had pulled out his ignition key when he parked the car, but the lock was so worn that the engine had kept on running.

Lower Penwortham? It doesn't exist claim residents

There is no such place as Lower Penwortham, near Preston - and that is the opinion of many of the people who live there!

They say they resent the name “Lower Penwortham” which is a post-war invention by people who don’t belong in the neighbourhood. The proper name they say, is Middleforth.

Mrs Annie Johnson, of Pembury Avenue, Penwortham, a former local councillor for many years said: “The correct name for this area is Middleforth. There is no such place as Lower Penwortham.

“Some people like to describe themselves as living in Higher Penwortham which is also wrong. Perhaps they like to think of themselves as superior to the people who live in Middleforth.

“Nowhere will you find the names Lower Penwortham or Higher Penwortham officially recognised. The terms originated, we believe, since the end of the war, by house agents.”

Mrs Johnson listed the titles of buildings in the area which bear the name Middleforth. She says they are the British Legion Club, fire station, sub-post office, caravan site, cricket field, a garage, the CE school and church, and the clinic.

At the old people’s welfare club, the members were asked whether they liked the name Lower Penwortham. “No, we don’t,” they shouted with one voice.

Harry's nest egg goes up in flames

Harry Houghton saved “about 10 bob a week” for over 30 years and kept the mounting nest egg in an envelope.

But the night before 80-year-old Harry, of Devonshire Road, Chorley, planned to take the advice of his mates and put the £575 savings in the local bank, he cleared out the old drawer where he kept the cash, and accidentally threw the envelope, and contents, on his living room fire.

“I just couldn’t believe it when I realised what had happened,” said Harry, a retired sandblaster. “I think I fainted for a bit, and my heart is still jumping up and down when I think about it.”

After speaking to pals about his money he went to Barclays Bank in Market Street and changed his old notes for current fivers. He planned to bank them the following morning.

The Bank of England will replace any notes damaged by fire, if the ashes are sent to them.

Said a spokesman: “He should go to his bank and obtain a mutilated note claim form which he fills in and sends to us, together with the ashes. We will then replace all the notes we can identify from the ashes.”