Further Items from Peter Christie's 'Looking Back' Column

In the North Devon Journal (2015)

Provided by Peter Christie

Extracts from past issues (1865, 1915, 1965, 1990) of the Journal


Celebrations are held at Arlington to mark the birthday of Sir Bruce Chichester

The old leper hospital at Pilton is described by Townshend Hall a local antiquarian.



Every Berrynarbor man serving in the Forces is sent a present of cigarettes and tobacco.

A Northam Boy Sailor called Curry is killed in HMS Formidable.



A fire at the Elizabethan Club, Westward Ho! causes £4000 worth of damage.

Braunton Primary School with 520 pupils is the largest in North Devon.



Mettaford Farm guest house in Hartland is gutted by fire.

South Molton Mayor Jamie Easton and 20 members of the town's Rotaract Club do a sponsored swim at Woolacombe.





The Bible Christian Jubilee Chapel at Landkey is opened.

Miss Tyrrell establishes a Cottage Hospital at Ilfracombe with 6 beds and one nurse.



Annie Kenney a Suffragette speaks in Barnstaple on 'Why men should join the Army'.

Pte.W.Ridd of the 1st Devons writes home to Bishops Tawton about the Christmas Day truce on the Western Front.



Overhanging cliffs at Capstone Hill, Ilfracombe are blown up.

A crescent of 10 shops is to be built at West Cross, Braunton.



A 2 hour traffic jam in Hatherleigh sees the Mayor Bill Reynolds call for action.

A section of railway track is to be relaid by the Instow signal box.





A live rat is found inside a block of stone at Wear Dock quarry near Bideford.

St.Mary's church in Bideford is reopened following a complete rebuilding.



L/Cpl. W.Holding of Parracombe is killed on his first day in the trenches.

98% of eligible young men in Lynmouth have enlisted.



North Devon Technical College at Barnstaple is to buy a computer – at a cost of £30,000.

World War Two emplacements at Instow cricket ground are demolished after becoming 'a harbour of vice'.



A new 'achievable scheme' for the Ilfracombe harbour area is announced.

The last prefab in Barnstaple, occupied by Muriel Jury, is demolished.





A Barnstaple public meeting discusses setting up the Western Counties Idiot Asylum

The western approach to Bideford Bridge in front of the Commercial Hotel (Tanton's) is widened.



Barnstaple town council discuss turning off street lights at night to thwart enemy bombing raids.

Barnstaple's Miller Institute (now Yeo Vale school) is used as a Red Cross hospital for wounded soldiers.



Rubble from the planned HEP station at Bucks Mills could be used to build a harbour there.

Lloyds Bank in Bideford is completely refurbished to mark its centenary.



A 12 year old is found drunk in The Plough at Torrington during a 'Junior Disco'.

The RSPB set up a bird reserve next to the old Yelland power station.





Sarah Hill a 10 year old 'miserably clad and apparently idiotic girl' is arrested for begging in Barnstaple.

Northam Burrows are flooded and it is suggested golf club members pay to strengthen the Pebble Ridge.



Barnstaple's Mayoress collects eggs for wounded British soldiers in France.

Ilfracombe's motor charabancs are requisitioned by the Army.



Torrington town council take over the running of May Fair from the Chamber of Commerce.

Holsworthy Civil Defence is scrapped owing to public apathy.



The 'Storm of the Century' hits North Devon and 20,000 homes are left without electricity.

Work begins on providing a flood defence scheme at East-the-Water, Bideford.





The foundation stone of the New Hotel in Ilfracombe is laid.

Barnstaple town council complete a new map of the town.



The Belgian Minister of State meets 60 refugees from his country in Bideford Town Hall.

Five Appledore sailors are interned in Constantinople when Turkey enters the war.



Barnstaple town council refuse to allow X-films to be shown on Sunday unless magistrates agree.

A 'black panther' at Black Torrington is identified as a family dog.



An increase in business rates sees Combe Martin shopkeepers warn the place will become a 'ghost town'.

Pupils at Forches Primary School start composting to improve soil at their tree nursery.





A public meeting is held in Holsworthy in support of a railway to Bideford and Launceston.

Elizabeth May an 'unfortunate' (prostitute) from Boden's Row in Barnstaple is charged with theft.



North Molton women knit 800 articles for servicemen.

A club for the 200 Belgian refugees in the Bideford area is set up in Silver Street.



Holsworthy's Tudor Cinema loses its licence as it is said to be a fire risk.

A new beach could be created by dumping rocks to catch sand at Appledore says a local councillor.



Local councillors call for the removal of boats alongside Fremington Quay which has become 'a squatter's paradise'.

Residents of Burrow Road, Ilfracombe campaign against a new fish packing plant in their road.





The Reverend Gossett of Northam publishes a pamphlet on the future of Northam Burrows.

A court case is held to decide on ownership rights of seaweed on Instow beach.



Barnstaple's Palace Cinema screens 'Apache or Hooligan Dance, as danced in the Low Parts of Paris'.

Ammunition manufacturers Kynock Ltd. announce plans to set up in Bideford.



Woolacombe Residents Association try to have 'beat dances' at the Narracott Grand Hotel stopped.

Government scientists construct a model of the Westward Ho! pebble ridge to track recent changes.



Harpers & Bromley's bakery ceases trading and its shops in Barnstaple and Braunton close.

The Braunton Post Office moves from Caen Street to Exeter Road.





10 year old William Rude is gaoled overnight for playing 'cat & dog' in Barnstaple Pannier Market.

Torrington's town crier announces that John Symons of St.Giles disowns his wife's debts.



L/Cpl. C.Brown of Ilfracombe becomes a hero after shooting down an enemy plane from his armoured car.

Under the Defence of the Realm Act all lights in Devon are to be extinguished at night.



A new 2 storey car park in Queen Street, Barnstaple is to cost £40,000.

Youngsters in Clovelly run up and down the street pulling tin cans on string to keep the devil away.



The sea wall at Ilfracombe is breached during a 70 mph storm.

Plans for an F1 racing circuit at Johnstone Moor near South Molton are abandoned.





Thomas Harvey dies after being overcome by fumes at a limekiln in Westleigh.

Betsy Spencer 'a well known dwarf' dies at South Molton aged 73.



RN Signalman Frank Glover from Bideford is awarded the DSM.

The ss Bengrove sinks off Ilfracombe – possibly after a submarine attack.



Dartington Hall are to bring a new glass factory to Torrington.

At Westward Ho! a 1700 yard long breakwater from the Patio Pool is suggested.



Plans are unveiled to build houses on the site of Cyprus Terrace School in Barnstaple.

Dunes at Northam Burrows are washed away during huge storms.





The Landkey Friendly Society is sued for not paying out death benefits to a member's widow.

A new church clock at Bideford is to be lit by gas.



John Smale of Tawstock is congratulated by the King for having 7 sons in the Forces.

Parliament debates using Lundy as a PoW camp.



A 'small, self-contained village' of 141 houses is planned at Wrafton.

The 'Disc-a-Go-Go' TV programme sends scouts to the 59 Youth Club in South Molton looking for new dancers.



Plans by London boroughs Kingston and Sutton to move IT operations to North Devon are put on hold.

A plea to 'Save Westward Ho! before it's too late' is made by local councillors.





William Trim of Holsworthy is tried for bigamy.

A Tawstock 'idiot child' is regularly tied up during the day to keep it still.



Seven Journal apprentices have joined the Forces.

Delbridge & Sons' carpentry shop in Queen Street, Barnstaple burns down.



'This is not a gimmick' says the vicar of St.Peter's, Barnstaple when a local beat group play in his church.

'The Fabulous Unknowns' group play at the Spider Club, Ilfracombe.



North Devon MP Tony Speller rejects calls to resign over the Poll Tax.

Instow people say there are too many dogs on their beach.





A skeleton found at Pottington is reckoned to have been 'a sailor in a Scandinavian war galley'.

New trustees are appointed to the Barnstaple Cordwainer's Charity.



A 10 mph speed limit is imposed on the road passing through Combe Martin.

The body of 94 year old John Quick of South Molton has to be taken to London for cremation as there is crematorium closer.



Ada Williamson the district midwife is to be the first female Mayor of South Molton.

A Georgeham parish meeting calls for the parish council to resign en bloc – but they ignore the call.



The badly damaged lime kiln at Bucks Mills is to be repaired.

Bird's grocery shop in Winkleigh closes after 60 years of trading.





Two Barnstaple apprentices are gaoled for 3 months for absconding from their master.

Bideford Anthracite mine is said to be 'worked out'.



The Dutch steamer Flora runs ashore at Hartland, its crew are guarded by 25 soldiers.

Bideford's Pte.J.Prance of the Royal Flying Corps is awarded the DSM.



A light plane crashes at Shebbear but no-one is injured.

A local drama group's inclusion of the 'Can Can' dance in their production is described as 'crude'.



All day parking charges at Barnstaple's Seven Brethren Bank rise to £1.50.

A protest march against the Poll Tax in Barnstaple sees 3000 people take part.





Evan Jones captain of the Muddiford mines dies aged 48.

A 17 year old Torrington glover Mary Hammett is gaoled for 1 month for stealing a dress.



11 Hartland men are charged with looting a stranded Dutch vessel.

Pte.William Matthews from Barnstaple is reported as killed in action but turns up wounded in Norwich Hospital.



Blakewell Methodist church at Chittlehampton is closed and put up for sale.

First customers at a new International Stores in Ilfracombe are offered a free plastic bowl.



Plans to develop a 'commercial complex' on Bideford's Sports Ground are announced.

New sea defences at Ilfracombe are to cost £250,000.





Elizabeth Morris 'a miserable looking creature' is found drunk in Green Lane in Barnstaple.

The Torrington fire engine is tested in the High Street.



A Barnstaple magistrate reckons 'As they all knew the country was flooded with spies.'

A 'Romany wedding' is held in Barnstaple Registry Office.



Court Line Ltd. negotiate to buy Appledore Shipbuilders Ltd.

The Hatherleigh fire engine overturns on its way to a fire at Merton.



Woolsery residents vote against a proposed new village 'centre'.

Lynton & Lynmouth Cliff Railway celebrates its centenary with a brass band and a reception.





The West of England College is to be built at Westward Ho!

Bideford masons strike for a raise in wages from 16/- (80p) to 18/- (90p) a week.



The Mayoress of Barnstaple appeals for sandbags for the men at the Front.

Tailors in Bideford get a wage rise of 1/2d per hour.



A huge fire destroys factory buildings on Taw Wharf in Barnstaple.

A mixed rugby match in South Molton offers prizes of beer for the men and nylons for the women.



Sea water at Putsborough is found to be the cleanest in Britain.

Riversdale Avenue in Ilfracombe is identified as the site for a new supermarket.





William Drew of Barnstaple aged 19 dies fighting for the Union Army in the American Civil War.

Mr.Pridham rents the Clock Tower in Ilfracombe as a booking office for his coaches.



A company of Girl Guides is established at Ilfracombe.

17 salmon are caught in one afternoon at the Bideford Bridge Pools.



Lynton town council allow slot machines at the Tennis Courts amidst fears this will attract 'Mods & Rockers'.

66 children under 9 have measles in Torrington.



A new 40' BT radio tower in Dolton is condemned by locals.

A fire at The Thatchers in Heanton Punchardon is fought by 50 firemen.





Barnstaple town council expresses their condolences following the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.

John Osmond of Swimbridge is ordered out of Barnstaple after 'indecently exposing his person' whilst drunk.



Sermons are preached in Barnstaple churches about the sinking of the Lusitania

370 men eligible for the Forces are said to be still in Bideford.



Plans to rebuild Fremington Army camp are scrapped and its future is in doubt.

At Westward Ho! the 'Gay Sombrero' is renamed as the 'Fairway' public house.



South Molton celebrates the 400th anniversary of its town charter.

Torrington May Fair is said to be 'the most popular in years'.





The Journal's circulation reaches 2400 copies per week.

An Ilfracombe thief is caught after photographs of him are distributed by the police.



Two Belgian refugees marry in Barnstaple's Catholic church.

The ss Dumfries is torpedoed off of Ilfracombe but its crew are rescued.



Fremington parish council attempt to renew their licence to extract gravel from the River Taw.

Doreen Tucker becomes Swimbridge carnival queen at the first village carnival since 1951.



A fire at AK Precision Mouldings in Barnstaple causes £150,000 worth of damage.

Councillors decide not to lease Bideford Pannier Market to a private company.





The South Molton church vestry votes to remove the 'unsightly Southern gallery of the church'.

George Fishley, potter of Fremington, dies aged 94.



A thrice weekly motor bus service between Hartland and Bideford begins.

Barnstaple Rural District Council declare 'The motor lorry has come to stay.'



Parents in Milton Damerel fight to keep their village school open.

A Bideford coffee bar moves to Westward Ho! - locals fear the resort will be a 'dumping ground' for Bideford teenagers.



A bogus social worker tries to force her way into a Barnstaple house – a pattern occurring nationwide.

A Medieval jousting competition is staged at Tapeley Park, Instow.





A young girl at Bideford is said to have eaten nothing for a year.

The Westward Ho! Hotel opens with no formality.



The Ilfracombe Patriotic Fund tackles distress amongst soldier's families in the town.

One of the swans belonging to Barnstaple town council is found shot through the head.



An unexploded German bomb is found near to RAF Chivenor.

Lynton's Civil Defence committee consists of just the town clerk.



Thieves steal 300 pairs of jeans from a shop in Boutport Street, Barnstaple.

The last greenfield site in Westward Ho! - at Avon Lane – gains planning permission for housing.





A new West of England Bank opens in Torrington.

Thomas Colman of Bideford is charged with being drunk at 'the Northam revel'.



There are temporary war hospitals in Barnstaple, Bideford, Ilfracombe and Instow.

In Chittlehampton 4 girls join a recruiting party to drum up volunteers.



Lynmouth beach is classed as 'poor' by the British Safety Council.

The Lee Bay Hotel re-opens after being rebuilt and doubling its size to 52 bedrooms.



A thatched cottage at Chittlehampton is destroyed by fire.

A short stretch of railway line is relaid at Instow's historic signal box.





'Old John Dew' dies at Black Torrington aged 84 – he fought with Wellington in Spain.

Mrs.Hunt secretary to the Bratton Fleming Death Club is said to be 'an uneducated woman, who knew nothing of the method of keeping accounts'.



Bideford town council proposes banning the Daily Mail from its Library for attacking Lord Kitchener.

Florence Richards delivers meat by bicycle in Barnstaple as there is no man available.



Alwington cricketer Bill Walter scores 181 not out against Littleham.

At Putsborough a 15' shark is spotted 15 yards off-shore by a RAF Chivenor helicopter.



Police say the new Link Road is helping long-distance thieves target North Devon.

A 2 bedroom terraced house in Newport, Barnstaple is on sale for £39,950.





George Braginton a banker and ex-Mayor of Torrington is declared bankrupt.

Ilfracombe Revel stages wrestling matches but 'the whole affair was of a disorderly character'.



Bideford Suffragettes raise funds for war hospitals in France and Serbia.

Will Thorne MP speaks on 'Trade Unions in War' at Barnstaple and Bideford.



Ex-coastguard Fred Crow of Croyde returns his war medals in protest at the award of MBEs to the Beatles.

Lundy Field Society Warden Jonathan Sparrow (18) falls to his death at Island Battery on Lundy.



Reservoirs across North Devon are closed due to the spread of poisonous blue-green algae.

Braunton Museum is under threat of closure due to 'the harsh financial climate of 1990.'





A South Molton boy called Dockings is treated with leeches for a head injury.

The British Medical Association meet at Westward Ho!



A new Methodist church opens in Hartland

At Lynton a company of Boy Scouts is formed with 40 members.



Talking of Westward Ho! dump a councillor claims 'we are tipping practically into the water at high tide.'

The widening of Back Road, Instow begins – it is later renamed Anstey Way.



Three operating theatres at NDDH are closed due to strike action.

Northam town council oppose plans to develop a marina at Knapp House.





A butcher fattens his sheep in the graveyard of St.Mary Magdalen church in Barnstaple.

The Northam Fife and Drum Band play at an Appledore lifeboat practice.



Torrington Council School erect a 'Roll of Honour' for old boys fighting in the war.

Instow parish council asks that 'Drive Slowly' signs be erected at both ends of the village.



J.Melhuish retires as head of Winkleigh School after 33 years.

The foundations of the original Royal North Devon Golf Club clubhouse are found under the pebble ridge at Westward Ho!



North Tawton parish council is left £100,000 by an elderly resident.

450 North Devon College students are left stranded by their bus-drivers on Exmoor after a College dance.





Mrs.John Beal is selling sweetmeats at Merton Revel when a thief snatches £1 from her.

Charity Mitchell of High Bickington is gaoled for 1 month for deserting her illegitimate child.



A cinematograph license is granted for the Public Hall in Appledore.

Ilfracombe town hall displays 385 photographs of local men and women in the Forces.



The new Barnstaple fire station is opened.

Bideford is searched after a sighting of Great Train Robber Ronnie Biggs.



Eight Red Ruby heifers are taken to Lundy on the m.v.Oldenburg.

The New Inn in Bideford is to be completely refurbished as flats, offices and a hotel.





A list of those who voted in a Barnstaple election and how they voted is published.

The AGM of the 100 strong Fremington Fortescue Benevolent Association is held.



Two Bideford men are fined for attacking women who were 'foreigners'.

Five Barnstaple Boy Scouts travel to South Devon to act as coastguards.



John Facey (68) retires from Moor's Garage, South Molton after 54 years with them.

A Liberal fete in Bideford's Sports Ground ends in at least 30 separate fights.



A 'rave' in a cave at Baggy Point is prevented by police action.

Public opposition defeats plans to build a new harbourside promenade at Ilfracombe.





A Russian Circus visits South Molton and exhibits 'a tribe of wild men'.

Donkey races around the Market are held at Bideford during the Regatta.



Two Northam women make and send 1300 sandbags to the Front.

2nd Lieut.George Moor of Braunton is awarded the VC.



Swimbridge Tannery is to close due to declining business.

Political bias is alleged over the selection of Barnstaple council house tenants.



Local 'tycoon' meat trader Amos Bridgman goes bankrupt.

Princess Diana makes a private visit to a friend in NDDH.





P.c.George Cawsey of the Barnstaple Borough police force is dismissed for drunkenness.

William Lee dies at Bideford – he was a hairdresser-cum-postman.



A Belgian soldier dies of wounds in Ilfracombe and is given a military funeral in the churchyard.

A Westward Ho! fete features 'Kaiser Bill' skittles.



Barnstaple's Head Post Office moves from Cross Street to Boutport Street.

The Moody Blues play at the Queen's Hall in Barnstaple.



'Corn Circles' appear at Newton St.Petrock with UFOs cited as the cause.

Plans for a holiday camp at Steart Farm, Parkham are withdrawn.





South Molton prison is to be closed following a Parliamentary order.

'A disorderly batch of prostitutes' is arrested in Green Lane, Barnstaple and gaoled for 2 to 4 weeks.



Miss Hill of Lee takes over her brother's postal round after he enlists.

Barnstaple Boy Scouts camp at Putsborough and take a gramophone with them.



100 fans of Ilfracombe beat group the Chevrons travel to London to see them play in a national contest.

4 ex-students of North Devon Technical College give a dinner to their old teacher P.Beer who taught them decorating.



Northam centenarian Alice Williams puts her long life down to a Guiness a day.

Reynolds Broughton who make fire engines at Winkleigh receive an order for 4 from the Sultan of Brunei.





Celebrations are held in Torrington to mark the opening of new walks on Castle Hill.

Northam church is reopened after a major refurbishment.



A National Registration census is held in North Devon – the forerunner to conscription.

An old well 8' wide and 14' deep is discovered in the middle of South Molton Square.



The first turf of the new North Devon District Hospital at Pilton is cut by Colonel Arthur Guy.

The last horse drawn milk float in Barnstaple is retired by Watt's Dairy of Yeo Vale.



The Radio 1 Roadshow pulls out of an Ilfracombe date following storm damage.

A Lynmouth harbourside period house is for sale at £89,950.





Rolle Quay in Barnstaple is to be cleaned up as it is seen as the site of a cholera outbreak.

A diver called Buchanan walks across Ilfracombe harbour under water.



The baby of Belgian refugees is christened in Barnstaple's Catholic church with all the names of the monarchs of the Allies.

A motor bus service between Bideford and Bradworthy is started.



The Bideford railway goods yard is closed.

Bert Waldron of Torrington wins the National Town Crier's Competition for the 6th year running.



Five young women are in training to join the crew of the Clovelly lifeboat.

Footballer Martin Nicholls moves to Torrington after playing for Bideford, Barnstaple and Ilfracombe.





Hele, Ilfracombe is said to be a place of 'extreme squalor'.

An 18 year old Barnstaple shop girl has to stand all day from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. apart from 15 minutes at dinner and teatime.



Elsie Heazel of Barnstaple collects 100 walking sticks for the use of wounded soldiers.

29 Bude Street, Appledore is sold for £95.



A 'pirate radio ship' is to broadcast as Radio City West in Bideford Bay.

A plan to build a motel at Moreton Park in Bideford is announced by Percy Brend and Fred Tithecott.



The Radio One Road Show is staged on Northam Burrows.

The county council bans pavement advertising hoardings in South Molton and upsets many shopkeepers.





A notice on Holsworthy church door details a prize for the most handsome young female churchgoer.

Anchor Wood, Barnstaple is plagued by 'lewd' and 'insolent' boys on Sundays.



The first female booking clerk is appointed at Barnstaple railway station.

At Braunton J.Tucker lectures in the open air on 'The War and the Shirkers'.



The Salvation Army Hall in South Molton is bought by the Catholics to use as their church.

The Royal Hotel, Bideford is to be sold by Trust House Hotels.



Michelle Thorn of Woolacombe wins Britain's top women's surf lifesaving title.

British Bakers of Whiddon Valley, Barnstaple closes with the loss of 32 jobs.





The newly built Rising Sun pub in Boutport Street, Barnstaple is licensed.

Boden's Row, Barnstaple houses 190 people – with 12 toilets between them.



All 250 cabinet makers in Barnstaple strike for an increase of 1d per hour.

George Hopson, said to be Bideford's first photographer, dies aged 78.



RAF Chivenor is to host civil flights by 1966.

The m.v. Vecta, which saw service at Dunkirk, is bought by P&A Campbell for their Ilfracombe routes.



A fire at Westlake Farm, Dolton 'tears the heart out of the farmhouse'

Bideford's Sentry Corner Post Office is set to close and no replacement has come forward.





Henrietta Broadway a gipsy breaks her thigh dismounting from her horse at her High Bickington camp.

A railway navvy working on the new line going through Bishops Tawton injures himself and is taken to Barnstaple Hospital.



Barnstaple Fair has no 'shows of any size, no steam organs, boxing saloons, freaks, giants, cocoa-nut shies or dwarfs'.

A film of the Fair is shown at the Barnstaple Picturedrome.



A RAF Chivenor helicopter crashes into the river at Bideford after it hits an overhead cable.

Combe Martin has a female bill poster – Mrs.D.Lee.



The Nationwide Building Society in Barnstaple's High Street is robbed by an armed raider.

The new Churchfields car park in Appledore opens with an 18th century anchor as its central feature.





A geologist describes fossil wood from Westward Ho! beach which can take a 'hard polish'.

Ford Farm, Alwington is completely destroyed by fire.



77 year old Mrs.Nancekivell is killed on the Bideford, Westward Ho! & Appledore Railway.

The Mayoress of Torrington sends 400 sandbags to the Front.



At Milton Damerel the Gidcott Metrhodist church is to close.

Work begins on the £420,000 150 house Frankmarsh Estate at Barnstaple.



Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie film an episode of 'Jeeves & Wooster' at Clovelly

The National Rivers Authority is to improve salmon and trout stocks in the River Torridge.





Miss J.Trebble is chosen as the 'Pretty Maid' of Holsworthy.

John Sweet of Bideford is charged by his apprentice with not teaching him his trade.



Lynton Cinema donates one night's takings to the Russian Flag Day fund.

Ilfracombe asks for troops to be billeted in the town as there are no tourists.



Barnstaple town council plans to extend their boundaries by 5 miles.

The final Barnstaple-Torrington passenger train runs.



St.Peter's churchyard in Barnstaple becomes the focus for 'mindless vandalism'.

Bideford Town Band appoint their first ever female conductor -Trudi Hookway.





Bideford is to lay paving stones along part of the Quay.

Barnstaple town council is to promote 'deserving officers' to 1st Class status in its Borough police force.



15 Mortehoe men enlist en bloc into the Royal Garrison Artillery.

A parish Roll of Honour is fixed to Challacombe church door.



Combe Martin bellringers play 5040 peals to mark the 102nd birthday of Emmie Halnon of Cranleigh Terrace.

The Castle Hill House hotel opens in South Street, Torrington.



Clancy's Department Store in Barnstaple goes into liquidation.

Ilfracombe Infant's School is given a giant playhouse by local businessman Nick Magnum.





Ex-policeman Amos Tamlyn is arrested for shooting at Captain Hogg's house in Newton Tracey.

A member of the Ilfracombe Rifle Corps is dismissed for smoking during the burial of the Corp's chaplain.



Braunton women meet to collect presents for local men held prisoner in Germany.

Thomas Westacott of Barnstaple sends a German officer's helmet home to his wife.



Two Bideford shop girls meet the Beatles in Madame Tussaud's in London.

A section of the old North wall of Barnstaple is discovered in Godfrey Sampson's shop.



N.Devon and Torridge councils have a shortfall of £3 million from unpaid Poll Tax bills.

Ron Baggs throws his WW2 medals into the R.Taw in protest over North Devon's planning policies.





Thomas Heywood a railway navvy is fined 5/- for being drunk and disorderly at the Elephant Inn in Barnstaple.

Edward Capern the postman-poet of Bideford has his government pension increased by Prime Minister Lord Palmerston.



A Soldier's Comfort Shop is opened in Braunton.

A recruiting rally outside the New Inn, Bideford is told around 800 local men have already enlisted.



14 houses on the corner of Trinity and Lower Church Street, Barnstaple are demolished as 'slums'.

10 new flats are opened on the site of the almshouses in New Street, Torrington.



Armed police arrest IRA suspects at Lee Bay Hotel near Ilfracombe.

Mark and Martin Davis of Eggesford are voluntarily cleaning their village telephone box weekly.





The 'Fortescue' – the first engine for the new Devon & Somerset Railway, arrives in Barnstaple pulled by horses.

Bideford town council sees many new councillors elected following a row about the Pill.



Armlets are issued to reservists and Army invalids to stop women pestering them as 'shirkers'.

North Devon municipal elections are cancelled because of the war.



A complete zoo moves from Swindon to Yarnscombe.

The Who are booked for Queen's Hall, Barnstaple but fail to turn up.



Bickington Bluebirds majorette troop are runners-up in a national championship contest.

The new Green Lane development is 'topped out'.





William Edwards a railway navvy of Bickington is gaoled for 1 month for indecent exposure in Barnstaple.

Tar barrels are set on fire and rolled through South Molton and Bideford streets to mark November 5th.



George Gomen of Barnstaple writes a recruiting song 'Sister Edith, we are coming' following the execution of Nurse Cavell.

Ilfracombe council are to approach 500 men in the town not yet enlisted.



A new HEP station at Buck's Mills is to cost £25 million and provide 2000 jobs for 5 years.

Parents in Appledore launch an appeal for a swimming pool in the village.



The Woodland Trust, owners of Bucks Mill lime kiln are to apply for its demolition.

Two groups apply for a licence to run a commercial radio station in North Devon.





A case of witchcraft involving the burning of a cow goes to court in Holsworthy.

The old culm quay at East-the-Water, Bideford is to be refitted as a ship repair dock.



The North Devon War Agricultural Committee discuss using women on the land.

Female teachers replace enlisted men at Bideford Grammar School.



A 30' deep hole opens up at Chudleigh, Bideford – it is said to be an old culm mine.

Several of the 'Manfred Manns' are said to have been fishing at Clovelly.



Barry Warren of Ilfracombe trawls up a 1½ ton anchor whilst fishing in the Bristol Channel.

A golf course and hotel at Berridon Farm, Bradworthy are given planning permission.





Lydia Wheeler is gaoled for 1 month for deserting her 3 illegitimate children in Torrington Workhouse.

Bailiffs cannot serve summonses on debtors on Lundy as local boatmen refuse to take them there.



Boys as young as 13 are to be put to farm work to replace enlisted men.

Agnes Wilkinson commits suicide by poison on the steps to Bideford Library.



Bideford town council are to provide 995 new car parking spaces at a cost of £94 each.

A farriery course is put on by the North Devon Technical College at Barnstaple.



1058 Bideford College students attempt a world record for a 'human centipede walk'.

Combe Martin's 'Britain in Bloom' committee erect a flower bedecked gibbet – not everyone is pleased.





Holsworthy magistrates hear many bastardy cases 'showing a very low state of morality' in the area.

In Bideford 110 shares at £2 each are issued to buy a trawler for the town.



Cpl.John Prance of the Royal Flying Corps presents a pipe made from the propeller of a captured German plane to the Mayor of Bideford.

Barnstaple War Supply Depot has 70 women knitting socks for servicemen at the Golden Lion Hotel.



The Art School in Barnstaple High Street is demolished to make way for an electrical shop.

Barnstaple town council vote to keep fluoride out of local drinking water.



Five students are expelled from West Buckland School for drug taking.

Work on Ilfracombe's new health centre in St.Brannock's Road is well advanced.





General Tom Thumb the dwarf visits Barnstaple, Bideford, Torrington and Ilfracombe.

An Ilfracombe navvy is killed in an explosion on the railway works at Chittlehampton.



In North Molton a 'lady postman' is doing a 9 mile round.

Many use 'electric hand lamps' during the nightly black-out in Ilfracombe.



Four young tourists apologise for staging a 'hoax' murder in Lynton's High Street.

Lionel Isaac of Braunton leaves £200 to provide an annual tea for children of the Junior School.



Probes for radon gas in buildings are to start in North Devon.

A new recycling centre opens at Anvil Corner, Holsworthy.





A local vicar sets up a night school for railway navvies working in South Molton.

All shares in the New Hotel at Ilfracombe are taken up.



Hellier's Novelty Stores in Barnstaple High Street hire 'Performing Bears' to attract customers.

A new enlistment scheme sees 1100 men make themselves available in just 2 days at Bideford.



New seats in Barnstaple parish churchyard are 'monopolised after dark by the slap-and-tickle brigade.'

Coalmen at Clovelly are allowed to make deliveries by tractor rather than a sledge.



The Manor Inn at Ashwater is devastated by a 'mystery blaze'.

Ilfracombe is to get a 16' inshore lifeboat.





Barnstaple Bridge Trust is described as 'this self-elected and irresponsible body'.

St.Mary's church in Bideford buys cottages in Lower Meddon Street to extend the churchyard.



Girls of 13 and above are to be allowed to do farm work.

An Ilfracombe man writes a poem 'The Devil's Christmastide' which features the Kaiser as 'Murderer Bill'.



The 161 acre Park Hill Farm at Shirwell is sold for £30,000.

Barnstaple town council raise rents for stalls in the Pannier Market to £26 per annum.



Plans for a wind farm at Fullabrook are rejected by NDC.

Shebbear College governors announces it is to go co-educational after 150 years.





Miss Payne, sister of William Rock, provides a Christmas tree for the paupers in Barnstaple Workhouse.

General Tom Thumb appears in the New Market Assembly Room in South Molton.



Britain's war dead number 119,923; there are 338,758 wounded.

Captain T.Fishwick (73) falls over Appledore Quay during the black-out and drowns.



Copp's Close 'old people's housing estate' in Bideford is opened at a cost of £75,000.

Torrington town council debate building houses for Swedish workers at a new glass factory.



Members of Westward Ho! Action Group go swimming in the sea to start a series of Christmas events.

Sherry's Restaurant in Boutport Street, Barnstaple is up for sale.