THE PAST IN COLOUR

Evergreen - - News - CHRISTO­PHER NI­CHOL­SON

It is sum­mer 1964 with a non­uni­form ter­race look­ing down to the sea, each house a dif­fer­ent colour. A Ford Anglia van faces a Hill­man Minx sa­loon which is about to be passed by a “Baby” Austin A35. Two ladies are busy chat­ting while a girl ma­noeu­vres her toy pram. The man is stand­ing un­der­neath a metal sign ad­ver­tis­ing Ken­si­tas cig­a­rettes.

Note the ubiq­ui­tous H- shaped tele­vi­sion aeri­als of the pe­riod and a nar­row trench which has been back­filled along the pave­ment, with a side branch lead­ing to each home. There has never been any gas here so it must be wa­ter or elec­tric­ity, each of which is pos­si­ble be­cause mains wa­ter was in­stalled around this time and elec­tric­ity was switched from over­head to un­der­ground ca­bles.

Any ideas where it is? If you have ever vis­ited the In­ner He­brides then you might recog­nise the main street of Bow­more on the south­ern­most is­land of Is­lay, specif­i­cally the A486 look­ing across Loch In­daal to­wards a promon­tory known as the Rinns of Is­lay. The build­ings to­day are all painted white, how­ever and, like the rest of the UK, all the H- shaped tele­vi­sion aeri­als have dis­ap­peared.

The pic­ture was taken on the new Ko­dachrome II film by the late Roger Red­fern, who trav­elled the coun­try record­ing the past for many years. Does any­one know for cer­tain whether it was gas or elec­tric­ity be­ing con­nected and also if the darker coloured tar­mac near­est the pave­ment was associated with it?

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