From the Guardian files

Royal Lancaster Infirmary
Royal Lancaster Infirmary

Find out what happened around the district 25, 10 and five years ago this week.

25 years ago

Striking local government workers again brought public services to a halt throughout the district with the exception of rubbish collection. As national moves to resolve the dispute over pay and bargaining conditions continued, Lancaster City Council rejected any idea of reaching a local settlement. More than 200 members from city and county council branches held a rally in Lancaster’s Dalton Square.

Survival plans for Lancaster’s Blue Bus Company were detailed to staff amid growing concern for the company’s future. Under fierce attack from expanding rivals, Lancaster City Transport’s management called a meeting with trade unions, after the company had been awash for months with rumours about redundancies and service cuts.

Lancaster City Council was to spend more than £7,000 to enable council properties in Yealand Redmayne and Wray to be supplied with gas. Within their programme for 1989-90, British Gas would be laying a new gas main to serve the villages.

10 years ago

Health chiefs in Lancaster district had been criticised in a new round of NHS league tables. Both Morecambe Bay Hospitals Trust and Morecambe Bay Primary Care Trust had failed to meet some of their set targets. The hospital trust, which ran the Royal Lancaster Infirmary, had lost its prestigious three-star rating.

The previous year the trust received a £1 million bonus from the Government for attaining three stars. However, health bosses had denied that patients would lose out because of the slip to two stars.

One of Britain’s rarest orchids had been stolen from its protected home in Silverdale. The Lady’s-slipper orchid – worth £2,000 – disappeared overnight from a Site of Special Scientific Interest at Silverdale Golf Club.

It was feared the remains of the plant would never recover from the damage caused. The flower had been growing at the golf club for decades, and was originally thought to have been planted in the early part of the 20th Century. In flower the orchid had purple petals and a yellow centre.

A full house of bingo netted a Morecambe woman more than £100,000. The 61-year-old was playing the National Bingo Game at the Gala Club, in Morecambe, when her 43 numbers came up. The lucky winner won the national prize, the zone prize and the house prize making her £102,207 richer.

Lancaster Green Party voiced its concerns about the closure of the city’s public transport information centre. The group believed the decision to close the centre at Lancaster Bus Station, had left travellers in the dark and they carried out a survey to test the remaining information point.

5 years ago

Two of the five most wanted burglars in Lancaster and Morecambe – one of them aged just 15 – had been arrested following a massive police operation. Operation Julius, a month-long campaign aimed at reducing burglaries in the area, had seen senior police officers ‘bothering burglars’ with letters and visits, as well as high profile activity culminating in a ‘blitz day’. Police dogs, mounted officers and operational support units from across Lancashire carried out high visibility activity in the city.

It was reported that a parking scheme for the city centre may finally go ahead – three years after residents were consulted. Some residents in the Regent Street and Aldcliffe Road areas had branded the scheme ‘half-baked’. Others backed the plans but most agreed the proposals were far too complicated for them to understand the implications. The roads affected were Regent Street, which would only allow parking on one side of the street, Aldcliffe Road, Dallas Road, Lindow Square, Lindow Street and Portland Street. If the plans were to get the go-ahead it would mean commuters and shoppers would no longer be able to park there.