Looking Back for August 22

By Matthew McKew

Published on Friday, August 22, 2014 - 12:35



100 Years Ago - August 22, 1914

The centre of the IW County Press’s front page featured a large advertisement from the Lt Col of the Princess Beatrice IW Rifles.

It said: "Are you not ashamed of the deficiency of numbers in your Island battalion? Will you not be ashamed when the trouble is over to meet those who have so willingly given their services to protect you and yours? Your services are urgently required."


Petrol prices on the Island went up to 4s per gallon.

Mr Samuel, MP, of the great Shell Oil Combination, wrote to explain the authorities had commandeered all petrol and cans at the Portsmouth depot. In addition, all of the boats between the mainland and IW had been taken for government service. Cargo between the Island and mainland would not resume for at least a week.

75 Years Ago - August 26, 1939

The international situation was so threatening, the Heavy Artillery Territorials were called out to man their war stations.

A continuous watch was started by the Observer Corps and the general instructions to the air raid precaution services were immediately acted upon.

The anti-aircraft regiment was called back from its annual training in Norfolk.

The emergency came as another sickening blow to those in tourism, who had already suffered a poor season because of bad weather.

Many visitors left or cancelled their bookings.


A water skiing record was set when a member of the British Olympic Games skating team crossed The Solent between Southsea and Seaview.

She completed the five-and-half-miles in just 20 minutes and would have been quicker if it were not for engine trouble on the boat.

Her next challenge was to cross The Channel.

50 Years Ago - August 22, 1964

British Railways bought two trains from London Underground for use at Ryde.

The trains would be available for a service between Ryde Pier Head and Ryde St John’s Road Station, should the Island’s other remaining railways lines close.

The chairman of the IW Railway Retention Association believed it was a sign British Railways was pre-empting the decision to axe further lines.

A railway spokesman said they were bought at scrap prices and could easily be re-sold.


Figures by the Ministry of Labour showed a marked increase in the number of boys and girls unemployed on the Island.

A spokesman said this was almost entirely due to children leaving schools at the end of the summer term and not accepting jobs until they knew their GCE results.

There were 347 unemployed men and 42 women.

25 Years Ago - August 18, 1989

News of a possible £100 million sell-out of Sealink’s Island ferry services brought calls for a local consortium to be established to buy and run them as the IW Car Ferry Company.

Red Funnel was also subject of a takeover bid.

Sally UK Holdings bid £21 million. It meant Red Funnel delayed purchasing a new 130-seater craft for between £1.5 million £2 million.


Fifteen hundred laying hens perished when arsonists set ablaze two large poultry houses at a Havenstreet smallholding.

The raiders also broke into a nearby caravan used as an egg store and smashed the contents.

10 Years Ago - August 20, 2004

Proposed radical changes to the Island school system were put on a back burner so consultants could be called in.

The council was looking a number of possibilities — scrapping the middle school system, creating a sixth form college or reducing the number of high schools from five to four.


Organisers of the IW Scooter Rally predicted the event could be the biggest yet.

Smallbrook Stadium was to be turned into a campsite for around 5,000 scooters and their machines.

Reporter: matthewm@iwcpmail.co.uk

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