The way we were: Pill box hats hit Porirua
The 1960s seemed a prosperous time - as long as you paid your television licence.
The power of advertising had hit the broad sheets and ‘‘easy credit finance’’ had made it’s way into the national psyche.
Consumers no longer needed the money to take their Sunbeam Beatermix, venetian blind or Zip frypan home from the store - they could walk out and pay later.
Fortunately, there were plenty of job opportunities about in Porirua City.
In the Situations Vacant columns of the time a few big employers stood out - often taking full page ads to shout the many virtues of their business.
The Kodak Processing Laboratory in Elsdon was one such employer.
The workplace boasted it’s own staff camera club, a subsidised salon and a ‘‘five star menu’’ featured meals fish schnitzel, hungarian goulash and oyster cocktails for employees.
Transport home after a night shift at the factory was free - the company would pay for a taxi but it wasn’t just the perks employees could look forward to.
‘‘With overtime, the takehome pay for quite a few male staff often reaches 30 pound a week. For skilled women workers 20 pound is not exceptional.’’
Meanwhile, the property market was booming, a two storey house in Paremata sold for 8150 pound while a five bedroom home on Mana Esplanade was asking 9500 pound.
A new industry for Porirua was announced, with a new company, Hills Hats, making the berets for the army, scouts, police and civil aviation.
‘‘A new note in fashion is introduced by the pill box shapes.’’
As a growing community Porirua should be represented by it’s very own municipal band, the paper reported.
‘‘It’s important we can hold our collective heads high.’’
Bandsmen from Mana College would be calling on every house in Porirua East to collect donations, residents were warned.
However, despite the apparent prosperity of the time, not everybody paid their bills.
A spokesman for the Radio Inspectors’ Division said 16,466 ‘dodgers’ had been caught with unlicensed televisions or radios in the Wellington area.
‘‘Thirty persons would come before the Magistrates court to answer for their behaviour.’’
Easy credit terms: an advertisement from the 1960 Kapi-Mana News.