Looking back 10, 25, 50 years ago (published Gazette, April 30, 2015)

The Northumberland Gazette delves into the archives to remind readers of stories from the past.

Thursday, April 29, 1990

The battle for the Berwick seat in next week’s General Election exploded amid accusations of ‘dirty tricks’ yesterday, as it emerged that Conservative candidate Mike Elliott once contested the seat for the Labour Party. And, it transpires, his own party election agent Liz Rixon was unaware of this. In an election leaflet and also an article which appears in this week’s Northumberland Gazette, Mr Elliott’s Liberal Democrat opponent Alan Beith referred to him as having ‘previously stood as the Labour candidate’. The Gazette contacted Ms Rixon, who described this as ‘absolutely not true’ and ‘misleading’. While admitting that Mr Elliott had once been a member of the Labour Party, who had been put forward as the candidate for a parliamentary seat in Newcastle, Ms Rixon flatly denied he had stood at Berwick.

Friday, April 27, 1990

Two redundant Alnwick pubs are in line for a complete facelift which the district council believes will rid the town centre of a major eyesore. The vacant White Hart and Crown pubs have stood empty on either side of the Queen’s Head in Market Street for years, but brewers Vaux, through its property developers Percheron Property Ltd, have lodged a planning application with Alnwick District Council to convert the properties into houses and flats. The proposals came about after the district council opened discussions with Vaux, the new owners of the Queen’s Head and the adjacent derelict pubs, and drew up the scheme in conjunction with the developers. Mr Gordon Smith, the district council’s assistant planning officer, said he was keen to see the buildings converted to housing to tidy up the site.

Friday, April 30, 1965

Sir Alec Douglas-Home has accepted an invitation to visit Alnwick in August, when he will speak at the Berwick-upon-Tweed Conservative Association fete in Alnwick Castle. This was announced by Mr Maurice Hill, agent, at the annual meeting of the Alnwick branch of the association on Wednesday. At the conclusion of the meeting, Mr Hill thanked the members, on Viscount Lambton’s behalf, for their help and support at the General Election. After urging them to recruit new members, and warning them to be ready for a snap election, Mr Hill said: “We don’t want everyone to sit back and say, ‘It’s all right, Lord Lambton always gets in’.” In his opening remarks, Mr BWT Thorp, who presided, said that the branch had not been as active as in previous years.