1981 Lancashire nostalgia: Market petition, noisy pigs and women's hour in sex shop

Up and away... and a big sigh of relief from youth club officials as more than 100 gaily coloured balloons took off from Bamber Bridge Methodist Church. The club with the furthest-travelling balloon wins a cash prize
Up and away... and a big sigh of relief from youth club officials as more than 100 gaily coloured balloons took off from Bamber Bridge Methodist Church. The club with the furthest-travelling balloon wins a cash prize

Life in Lancashire in 1981, plus your memories in pictures

Market stallholders hand over petition

Defenders of Preston’s outdoor Fish Market presented an 11,000 strong petition demanding that it be retained in its present form.

And that means that over 16,000 have signed pledging their opposition to plans to develop the historic market site into a shopping complex.

The mammoth petition, bulging out of the a box file, was handed over to deputy council leader Coun Jim Cox, on the steps of the Town Hall by market stall holders’ leader Maurice Cresswell.

In doing so, he emphasised that none of the signatures had been canvassed.

He said: “We just left the forms on our stalls below posters.”

The petition was handed over as councillors prepared to consider proposals for the market’s redevelopment.

Details have not yet been released but it is known that one involves glassing in the fish market area and turning it into a high class 12-shop centre.

This was the one submitted by a Midlands developer and designed by Preston’s Building Design Partnership, which started the ball rolling. Before that submission, councillors had no thought of redeveloping the market.

Women’s hour at a Preston sex shop

A Lancashire sex shop has slapped a ban on male customers - for one hour in every week.

From next Tuesday the period from 9.30am to 10.30am will be officially designated Woman’s Hour at The Private Shop in New Hall Lane, Preston.

But the shop manageress denied that the move to attract more lady customers amounted to unfair sex discrimination.

“We’re open six days a week from 9.30am to 8pm. I’m sure the men can spare the ladies that hour,” she said.

Shop owners Conegate Limited, who own a chain of sex stores, claim that a quarter of their customers are now female.

But the Preston shop is lagging behind.

Said boss Paulette: “About 15 per cent of our customers are female. They range in age from 20s to late 40s and buy mainly marital aids.”

But for some Saturday morning passers-by the news of the special arrangement was not welcome.

Said one lady: “I’m not in the least bit interested.”

Another added: “I’m against the whole idea of sex shops. But I suppose there are people who need them.”

Pig noise fear is a ‘just a load of old hogwash’ say farmers

A Government report has urged farmers to protect themselves against the noise of hungry pigs. But in Lancashire it was dismissed as just a load of old hogwash.

The Health and Safety Executive says that the noise at feeding time down on the farm can reach up to 110 decibels - higher than the maximum of 90 in a new code of practice.

And it warns that farmers should wear ear muffs or plugs if they want to protect their hearing.

But Lancashire pig farmers laughed off the executive’s cure to save their bacon.

Brian Wiggans, who has 1,200 pigs at Clockhouse Farm, Lea Road, Lea, Preston, said the pigs were noisy at feeding time but none of his workers used ear muffs.

“I have been with pigs for years and it has never bothered my hearing,” he said. “We have to keep the pigs hungry so that they don’t get too fat and that is why they scream.

“It’s just like you or me if you don’t get fed, you make a noise about it.”

Harry Pickervance, of New Heys Farm, Newton, near Kirkham, who has 10,000 pigs, said he provided ear protection but nobody ever bothered with it.

And farmer John Clarke of Highgate Farm, Newton, added: “I think the people who write these reports make a lot more noise than the pigs.”