NOSTALGIA: This week in 1917 and 1997

editorial image
  • Boston soldier shows ‘grit’ in Beersheba in 1917
  • Teletubbies hijacked on way to Bosotn in 1997

This week (December 13 edition) in 1917 ...

* The Standard carried what it described as a ‘very interesting and spirited letter’ from a Boston soldier, one which it said showed ‘the grit of our fighting men at the Front’.

Oldrids security guard Ian Thompson with the remaining Teletubbies.

Oldrids security guard Ian Thompson with the remaining Teletubbies.

Ex-Grammar School pupil Leonard Adams was writing home from Cairo, where he was being treated in hospital.

The GPO worker had been injured during an attack on the main fort at Beersheba.

He said: “There was only one thing missing – a kinematograph. It was a great sight to see the boys bounding up the steep hill to 30 yards of our barrage and while waiting for our barrage to lift a 6in fell short and the concussion knocked me unconscious, and I received some splinters in the right leg just below the knee.”

Leonard evidently recovered sufficiently to bandage his wounds and go forward when the bombardment ceased, as he said: “It was ‘some’ charge when we let rip.”

The lads’ bayonets were red. It was not rust. I am proud to have been there

“The lads’ bayonets were red. It was not rust. I am proud to have been there,” he added.

* Corpl T. Cushley, 23, of the 1st Lincolns, had been honoured for his gallantry.

Writing home to his mother in Lawrence Lane, Boston, he modestly said: “I have had the luck to win the Military Medal.”

Before the war Corpl Cushley was employed by the butchers Staines.

Turfed out staff during 1997's bomb scare.

Turfed out staff during 1997's bomb scare.

This week in 1997...

* Highjackers had targeted a consignment of in-demand Teletubbies toys destined for Boston.

Forty-eight of the dolls were due to arrive at department store Oldrids, but when staff opened their consignment of the top-selling toys, half had disappeared en route.

As a result, Oldrids had thrown up a ring of hi-tech security around the remaining toys (there was an equal share of Laa-Laas and Pos, but no Dipsys or Tinky-Winkys).

And to avoid a mad scramble in the store between eager parents, Oldrids was to hold a charity draw for the right to buy a doll,

* An elaborate bomb hoax saw roads in Boston closed and businesses come to a standstill.

Homes and firms in the Nelson Way industrial estate were evacuated as police sealed off a large area and called in bomb disposal experts after a suspect package was discovered at the Boston Squadron ATC base.

Businesses were forced to shut up shop for much of the afternoon, while roads closures built up traffic jams.

Boston police Chief Insp Trevor Barnes said the package was made to ‘look very much like a bomb’, but turned out to be a hoax.