Looking back for August 15

By Matthew Mckew

Published on Friday, August 15, 2014 - 13:30



100 Years Ago - August 15, 1914

ROYAL assent was given in the House of Lords to the South Western and IW Junction Railway Act, which gave powers in connection with the construction of a Solent tunnel.


Military guards were particularly vigilant. A visitor staying at Freshwater Bay was arrested for sketching near the temporary defences.

He was detained for several hours and then released.

A post office telephone lineman at work on the wires near Yarmouth was also captured and kept under guard until his papers were checked.

A young lady who was sketching the river at Newport Quay was taken to the railway station by soldiers but later allowed to return.

And prisoners from Camp Hill Prison, who were assisting with fortification works on the east coast of the Island, were cheered by passengers on passing trains.

Many prisoners at Parkhurst Prison volunteered for active service.

75 Years Ago - August 19, 1939

The passenger traffic dealt with at Ryde Pierhead broke all previous records.

Nearly 63,000 people were ferried to and fro on a single day.


Lord Ebbisham obtained his 100th wicket of the cricket season, equalling a record he had achieved for nine successive years. He was playing with his own XI at Haslar, against the Old Brentwoodians.


The first lane well system on the Island was installed at Ryde to help with water supply.

The system, which pumped 400,000 gallons in 24 hours, used two boreholes at the Knighton water works.

50 Years Ago - August 15, 1964

The Cowes Week firework display attracted 20,000 people to the town.

It took two hours for the hundreds of coaches and thousands of cars to disperse after the event.

It was said to be the best regatta since the Second World War.


Sandown-Shanklin Council discussed the possibility of installing heated sludge digestion tanks at the sewage works.

The council would need to take out a £60,000 loan for the work, paid back over a 30-year period — around £1.1 million today.

25 Years Ago - August 11, 1989

Large areas of wildlife-rich heathland at Headon Warren, Totland, were destroyed in a 48-hour blaze.

All ten county fire stations were involved, amassing nearly 200 firefighters.

Half of the 80-acre warren was destroyed.


Cowes week brought mixed fortunates to the town’s shops and businesses, with many traders experiencing a disappointing slump.

Traders in and around the pedestrian precinct enjoyed bumper sales but at the other end of the High Street profits were down by 50 per cent on the previous year.

10 Years Ago - August 13, 2004

A boy of four was dragged into the hate campaign against his landowner parents who had agreed to allow wind turbines on their land.

The mainland company behind the £14 million project said it was saddened by the cowardly victimisation of the family and had been forced to go public in an attempt to stop the hate mail.

It was claimed parents were stopping their children from talking to the four-year-old boy.

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