NOSTALGIA: This week in 1968 and 1973

Kitwood Girls School pupils await a train at Boston station in April 1968 to begin their eight-day holiday in Paris.
Kitwood Girls School pupils await a train at Boston station in April 1968 to begin their eight-day holiday in Paris.
  • Secret revealed in 1968 of plans for Second World War British Resistance Movement
  • Duchess of Gloucester stops by for tea in 1973

This week (April 11 edition) in 1968 ...

* A Lincolnshire secret kept for more than 25 years was out following the publication of a book telling the story of a proposed Second World War British Resistance Movement.

My wife was always very uncomfortably aware of the explosives stored under the stairs whenever the air-raid siren sounded

The Boston area featured heavily in the book, with accounts of clandestine meetings, weapons and explosives stored in homes and a secret wireless aerial on the Stump.

The book, The Last Ditch by David Lampe, told the story of preparations made in the dark days of Dunkirk for fighting an underground war in the event of Britain being occupied by the Germans.

All over Lincolnshire, as along the whole east and south coasts, secret bases were established in ‘safe’ houses, derelict buildings and – more often – specially built and ingeniously camouflaged underground chambers in the countryside.

Lincolnshire had 181 men, split into 31 sector ‘patrols’ under nine group commanders.

Mr W. E. Greenwood, who in 1968 was headmaster at Park County Junior School, saw his home in Butterwick serve as a storage place for weapons and explosives.

“My wife was always very uncomfortably aware of the explosives stored under the stairs whenever the air-raid siren sounded,” he said.

This week in 1973 ...

* The Duchess of Gloucester visited members of the WRVS (Women’s Royal Voluntary Service) Darby and Joan Club at their meeting hall at Forbes Road Church, Boston.

Princess Alice made the visit to present long-service awards, as part of her role as president of the North Midland Region of the WRVS.

After the presentation, she chatted with members and took tea with them.

* An outbreak of smallpox in London had led to the cancellation of a visit by 50 children from to Boston.

The youngsters were to have come from Laval, Boston’s twin town.

* Concern had been raised over the quality of water between the Grand Sluice at Boston and the Wash.

A public inquiry was told it was ‘a river of poor quality requiring improvements as a matter of some urgency’.

Lincolnshire River Authority was applying for greater control over discharges into it.

* The top-selling LPs in Boston were 1: Houses of the Holy, Led Zeppelin; 2: Don’t shoot me I’m only the piano player, Elton John; and 3: Dark Side of the Moon, Pink Floyd.

The top single, as compiled by Boots’ record department, was Get Down by Gilbert O’Sullivan.