Looking Back, Friday, January 18, 2013

By Sara Bryce

Published on Friday, January 18, 2013 - 11:08


100 Years Ago - January 18, 1913

A NAVAL funeral took place in Ryde Cemetery for a 33-year-old petty officer, who had been ill for a long time.

The service was led by the chaplain of his ship, HMS Aboukir, and the coffin was drawn on a gun carriage, with six petty officers from the ship acting as pallbearers.


Cars driving through flood water and creating waves caused several shops in Newport to be flooded.

Shopkeepers had managed to keep their shops dry, until the drivers taking their cars through the water at speed caused water to stream through the flood defences.

Signs were erected advising drivers to negotiate the narrow streets slowly.


Islanders were sad to see the 1st Worcester Regiment, who had been stationed at Parkhurst, leave for Egypt.

While stationed on the Island, the regiment became the best shooting battalion in the British Army and proved one of the finest sporting corps to stay on the IW.

The public also enjoyed the regiment’s regular band performances.

75 Years Ago - January 22, 1938

A crowd gathered to watch a school of porpoises west of the pier at Sandown as they came close to the shore.

They were thought to have been attracted by the small bass in the shallow water.


A postman from Ipswich absconded from prison to the Island, after being found guilty of stealing letters containing £414 11s ½ d.

He stayed in holiday camps before appearing at the post office in Newport, posing as a superintendent inspector for the postal service.


Gale force winds forced many small steamers and sailing vessels to seek shelter in the Roadstead, at Yarmouth.

A day earlier, the tide had been extremely high, lapping at the Bridge Road, and passengers on the Southern Railway steamers had extremely rough crossings.

50 Years Ago - January 19, 1963

A seaman appered in court for being drunk and in charge of a bicycle in Cowes, after a police constable found him lying on the pavement with his bike lying on top of him. He tried to get up but kept rolling over onto his back and the police constable said his eyes were glazed, his face was flushed and he smelled strongly of alcohol. 


Snow that fell two weeks earlier still covered parts of the Island in thick drifts, and the sea froze in areas, including upper parts of Bembridge Harbour.

Boats were frozen into the ice and the changes in tide made little difference to the conditions.


An aero-engineering expert from Shanklin, who had been working and living out in Indonesia with his family, faced a tough decision when it came to moving home.

The family could not face leaving their adopted pets, a cat called Frisky and a parrot called Polly, behind and sought out five permits to bring them home with them.

Despite the huge change in conditions, the animals settled down happily.

25 Years Ago - January 22, 1988

The biggest tree ever tackled by Island tree-felling contractor Roger French in 16 years was felled after it overtook a garden.

The giant redwood, in the garden of a bungalow in Ryde, was 105ft high, and measured 7ft across at the base.


A £10m scheme to provide a wide range of all-weather facilities and tourist attractions, stretching for one-third of a mile along Ryde seafront, was unveiled by Medina Borough Council.

Aimed at bringing tourists back to the resort, the plans included a water leisure centre, new hovercraft terminal, theatre and show bar and a funfair.


The steady flow of container lorries using the weighbridge on the quay at Newport Harbour was interrupted by the one ton, 320kg combined weight of 14 West Wight Rotary Club members.

The group weighed in together to mark the start of a sponsored diet in aid of the International Organisation of Rotary Club’s Polio Plus campaign.

10 Years Ago - January 17, 2003

Less than four months after a £10million hi-tech investment was hailed as a boost to employment security at the Island’s biggest industrial employer, Alania Marconi Systems (AMS) announced the loss of 87 radar jobs at Cowes.

AMS said 68 jobs were to be axed and a further 19 staff would be transferred to the mainland.


The difficulty in attracting newspaper boys and girls forced some Island newsagents to end newspaper deliveries.

At Binstead Post Office, owner Heather Coysh said: "Parents don’t want young girls to deliver because of the fear of paedophiles and crime."

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