Mick Dennison column: Remembering those golden days gone by

Mick Dennison.
Mick Dennison.

A very interesting group has popped up on Facebook and it’s one I advise anyone looking for a historical view of the local area to ‘like’ as soon as they can.

Morecambe and Heysham Past and Present is moderated by Elaine Currie Morris, she is doing a great job.

The site welcomes any type of photo or interesting historical facts regarding the town and encourages people to post pictures of how Morecambe and Heysham look today – very handy for exiles worldwide.

Something that caught my eye was a link to a site that listed all the celebrities that had switched on Morecambe Illuminations through the years, a category I recently included in the York Hotel quiz.

Did you know the Illuminations were first switched on in 1949 by Wilfred Pickles and were last switched on in 1996 by Reg Holdsworth from Coronation Street (AKA – Ken Morley)?

I remember in 1969 watching Morecambe and Wise taking an impromptu walk from the Midland Hotel, past the Super Swimming Stadium and the War Memorial before driving to the town hall to switch on the lights.

The town was packed; you could hardly walk up the prom: times were good. I wonder if our founding fathers who built Morecambe and Heysham would be happy to know that three tiers of local government are squabbling on a weekly basis as to the future of our town? Can you imagine in 100 years time, people on the futuristic version of Facebook looking at pictures of Morecambe in the early 21st Century. I don’t think it will make too interesting a look!

Another group in Morecambe gathering momentum is the Poppy Scatter. Its founder, Steve Trainor is leading the way with great enthusiasm and deserves a big pat on the back for his efforts so far. There is now a website under construction with a small amount of content at www.poppyscatter.co.uk.

I’m sure anyone with old photos of troops in the Morecambe area during that period would be welcomed by the group, there is a contact page available.