Lancaster nostalgia: Bill Thompson

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Historians Mike Whalley and Terry Ainsworth look on a special Lancaster club member, Bill Thompson.

Glasses were raised in a special toast to a long serving member of a popular Lancaster club, after his kindness sent beer and spirits prices tumbling - for four days and nights!

Bill Thompson, life member and trustee of the John O’Gaunt Liberal Club, who died in December last year, aged 92, never forgot the many lasting friendships he forged over the 70 or more years that he socialised at the Prospect Street club. And to mark his long association, and as a tribute to his friends, Bill left a sum of money in his will to ensure a good time was had by all. Bill’s gesture led to a price range that only today’s drinkers could dream about - 20p per pint, 20p per bottle, 20p per nip. With pies and pickles thrown in!

Bill served in the Royal Navy during the war and lived just a decent stone’s throw from the club in Dumbarton Road, Lancaster, for many years where he was a hugely popular member.

He supported all the club’s many events down the years, not least the legendary annual trips to seaside or horse track, including this one, snapped many years ago as members waited for their coach.

Bill can just be spotted, eighth from the right, peering round the head of a fellow member on the crowd picture. The man in the cardigan, at the front is Andy Johnstone, long time president.

With thanks to Gregory Williams, butchers.