Find out why this man is so pleased with his plant in this week’s nostalgia column

Sidney Deville with his aspidistra for the first time in its 80-year lifetime
Sidney Deville with his aspidistra for the first time in its 80-year lifetime

50 years ago...1962

FIVE men in Boston were putting their skills digging the garden to good use by excavating a field behind houses on York Street.

The group were beavering away with their spades in a bid to discover if the site had been home to a medieval kiln, which they believed could be buried underneath earth at the site.

They had been spurred into digging after they came across some pieces of pottery on the site, and further investigations with a metal detector revealed irregular activity consistent with a fire being below the earth.

At the time the story was published they had not found any evidence of the kiln, but they were convinced they would.

l ONE student at Boston High School certainly showed some business nouse when she managed to turn one shilling into £85 – by making butterscotch in her kitchen.

Jane Barlow and her mother had created a production line in their home to make the sweet treat, while her father had been selling it to his associates, making it a real family enterprise.

Jane, 15, who said she wanted to be a banker when she was older, was aiming to raise £100 towards installing a school swimming pool.

l HOUSEWIVES were considering making the move to a new type of potato after Boston docks was inundated with a bumper crop of the vegetable from the continent and South Africa. Sheds at the site were so full of spuds that workers were having to load deliveries right on to trucks to get them out of the area, as an average of 2,800 tons of the vegetable were being brought to the town every week to be distributed to other places.

Port manager Mr Imrie described the deliveries as ‘a blessing from heaven’ to have this amount of work at what is normally such a quiet time of year.

40 years ago...1972

A BOSTON woman had to overcome her fear of flames to raise the alarm when she noticed a blaze at her neighbour’s home in Blue Street.

Dorothy Clayton was only 100 yards away from the house when she noticed the fire, setting off her lifelong phobia of flames, which was sparked when she witnessed a terrible factory fire in her native London in her youth.

However, the plucky pensioner bravely went outside her home and ran to raise the alarm with a local policeman.

Thankfully, the neighbour had been out when the fire took place, and nobody was hurt.

l THE Standard witnessed the return of one of its protegees when former reporter Norman Bainbridge took on the role of news editor at the paper. Norman had started his career with The Standard after leaving Boston Grammar School, before moving on to a new job in Sleaford and then to other parts of the country.

He had been working in Cambridgeshire before deciding to move his wife and family back to his home town to take on his new job.

l NOT unlike stories in today’s papers, 1972 saw complaints about the price of rent in Boston and its surrounding areas.

The increase in rents which was expected to come with the approval of a new Government bill would make the amount unaffordable for most ordinary working class people, councillors complained, when they gathered for a meeting to discuss the issue.

The bill was intended to relive taxes for some people.

l Flymo lawnmowers were clearly the thing that people wanted in the spring of this year – if the number of entrants to a competition is anything to go by.

Hundreds of people wrote in to The Standard in a bid to get their hands on a Flymo 15-inch mower when the paper ran a contest in conjunction with Crawford and Son of Frithville.

However, the tricky puzzle proved too much for most of those entering the competition, and only a few got the answer right.

Mike Broadbent was the lucky winner in the end.

30 years ago...1982

OLD Leake was a blooming marvellous place to be for resident Sidney Deville, when his octogenarian aspidistra flowered for the first time in its life.

Sid had inherited the plant from his mother, who had owned it from the turn of the century, but it had never bloomed for either of them.

The Station Road resident said: “The plant arrived before I did.

“It has certainly never flowered in my lifetime and I don’t think it did in the 20 or so years before.”

l RESIDENTS in Boston town were on tenterhooks waiting to discover if the annual Lions carnival would be taking place in the town – after organisers were told they must change the route of its procession.

Months before the group had been told it would be able to hold the parade through the town centre, but they had now been informed it would not be possible to go through the newly-pedestrianised area.

However, despite the uncertainty, the group said it was sure the event would still be taking place, and a suitable route would be found through the town.

l A BLIND man and his wife made the journey from Grantham to Boston on foot, in a bid to raise money for the local blind society and the CB club. Barry Tuplin and his wife Jackie raised £120 for completing the 120-mile trek.

Jackie told The Standard: “I was worn out by Heckington, but Barry was fit and fresh by the end of his first sponsored walk.”

l ONE hundred workers at Pilgrim Hospital downed tools for an hour while they took part in a joint union meeting and demonstration over changes to pay conditions.

The group were fighting a move by the Department of Heath and Social Services to put a four per cent limit on wage increases.

Hospital bosses assured The Standard that it was all very amicable.

20 years ago...1992

FOR most people the wedding night is supposed to be one of the most romantic parts of their big day – but for one Boston couple it fell a little short.

Debbie Sands and Vince Lake had enjoyed a beautiful service at Freiston village church, and had a lovely reception at Leverton Leisure Centre, but when they arrived back to the White Hart Hotel for their wedding night, they found themselves locked out of the venue.

The bride’s mum Gillian Sands said: “It was supposed to be a day to remember, and everything was lovely until then.”

The newlyweds spent hours banging on the window to try and get in, and eventually ended up staying at the New England Hotel.

The hotel said it had offered the pair a night key but they had refused as they did not think they would be back late.

l IT’S usually criminals trying to break out from behind bars, but back in 1992, two Boston police officers made a break for freedom when they took part in a sponsored jailbreak. Pcs James Mason and Martin Sutcliffe managed to get the furthest of all those taking part, making it 1,150 miles to John O’Groats before they had to stop. The pair raised a total of £300 towards sending athletes to the Olympics.

l THE 7th Boston Swineshead Scout Group became the first group in the district to invest a girl Scout – just months after becoming the first group to take in a girl Cub.

Joanne Ladds, of Hubberts Bridge, joined the group with her brother Christopher.