22 February 2009

Wedding Anniversary

Gill Pool and Mike Carter

Married on 28 February 1959 

Celebrating 50 Years

28 February 2009


Here are some facts about 1959 for your edification 



Theatre and Films

Arsenic and old lace played at the Scunthorpe Hospital Players

Musical theatre – Pieces of eight

Expresso Bongo (Cliff Richard)

39 Steps

Look Back in Anger (Best British film 1959)

I’m alright Jack – Peter Sellers

(Best British Actor 1959)

Get Carter

The writer Ted Lewis, who lived in nearby Barton-upon-Humber, featured Scunthorpe in some of his novels about low-life 1960s gangster Jack Carter. The most famous of these books, Jack's Return Home saw the main character return from London to his home-town of Scunthorpe to avenge his brother's death. The story itself was based on the background to the real-life murder of Newcastle businessman Angus Sibbet in 1967, in what was known as the Fruit Machine Murder.

The film rights to this book where purchased by MGM who ironically transferred the setting from Scunthorpe to Newcastle-upon-Tyne and released the film in 1971 as the cult British crime thriller Get Carter, starring Michael Caine in the eponymous lead role.



Prime Minister  of  England was Harold MacMillan

Prime Minister of Australia was Robert Menzies


February 1959 MacMillan goes to Moscow to hold talks with Kruschev

June 3 Singapore becomes self-governing after 13 years as a British crown colony



August - MacMillan and Eisenhower (US President) hold a TV debate on the cold war and world peace (world first TV debate)



 3 January Alaska becomes the 49th state of the USA

 17 February Turkish Airlines crashed at London Gatwick Airport 

28 February  Launch of Discoverer 1 – first polar orbit (and a wedding in Scunthorpe)

 9 March Barbie doll debuted

 24 May Empire Day renamed Commonwealth Day in England

 21 August Hawaii becomes the 50th state of the USA



Jan 5th Buddy Holly releases his last record "It Doesn't Matter”

Adam Faith – What do you want?

Johnny Kidd and the pirates – Please don’t touch

Vince Taylor and the Playboys – Brand new Cadillac

Cliff Richard (Harry Rodger Webb) – Living doll (biggest selling single of 1959)


  STATISTICS on 1959


  • Population of England - 51 956 000
  • Male - 25 043 000
  • Female - 26 913 000


[1961 - Population of Scunthorpe - Total 743,596  / Males 369,386 / Females 374,210 ]


Average House Price £2,410

 Austin 7 ( Mini ) £500 

Average UK male annual salary £190 

Yearly Inflation Rate UK 0.9% 

Number of births in UK was 748,501


Etch A Sketch, France, by Arthur Grandjean

Microchip, USA, by Jack Kilby



Oh Boy

October 27 Anglia Television goes to air

Benny Hill

Hancock’s Half Hour



 February 12 Sigrid Thornton, actress          

 February 16 John McEnroe, tennis player  

April 15 Emma Thompson, actress

May 3 Ben Elton, writer and actor

 June 11 Hugh Laurie

October 15 Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York  



February 3 Buddy Holly, Richie Valens and the Big Bopper die in a plane crash

April 9 Frank Lloyd Wright

16 June George Reeves (AKA Superman)

July 17 Billie Holliday

 September 28 Gerard Hoffnung  Gerard Hoffnung was born in Berlin in 1925 and went to London in 1939 as a schoolboy refugee. Although he died at the early age of 34 years, he achieved in his short life enough to fill a whole series of lifetimes. Artist, teacher, cartoonist, caricaturist, musician and tuba player, broadcaster and raconteur, a much sought after speaker at the Oxford and Cambridge Unions and prison visitor, a Quaker - these were all facets of a creative personality. He was almost as gifted a musician as he was an artist, his true passion being for the brass instruments of the orchestra; this led him one day to purchase a bass tuba which, with serious dedication, he set about learning to play. He was 25 at the time and, after two or three years and many hours of practice, he found himself ensconced amidst the brass section of the Morley College Orchestra as their bass tuba player. From this vantage point at the rear of the orchestra his perceptive eye was free to focus, with affection and critical amusement, on the foibles and idiosyncrasies of his fellow performers. This new experience further stimulated his imagination and love of music and musicians and inspired the many hundreds of musical cartoons produced during the final years of his short life.


October 14 Errol Flynn


Eddie Fisher and Elizabeth Taylor


August – Australia beats US for Davis Cup

Rod Laver and Darlene Hard won Wimbledon’s mixed doubles, Rod Laver was runner up in the singles. 

The 2.65 mile Grand Prix circuit at Brands Hatch was constructed in 1959


  •  The Mark I Mini: First sales August 1959
  •  On December 15, 1959, Ackworth School was granted a coat of arms by the Kings of Arms. The school's coat of arms is made of the white rose of Yorkshire ("barbed and seeded"), acorns ("slipped" - which means "with a bit of stalk"), and the lamb, which is a device shown on the arms of the Foundling Hospital. It also features the school motto - "Non Sibi Sed Omnibus" ("Not for oneself but for all").
  •  The Nikon F 35-mm. single-lens reflex camera is introduced by Nippon Kogaku K.K.
  •  Direct Dial Payphones Introduced In The UK
  •  Southend Pier Pavilion is destroyed by fire
  • QANTAS introduces the Boeing 707 on its Sydney-San Francisco route, the first transpacific service flown by jet.
  •  One billionth can of Spam sold
  •  Spalding Flower Parade is held in Lincolnshire in late spring every year. Colourful floats decorated with tulip heads compete for a cup. The tradition was started in 1959, and draws coach tours from across Britain.





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