From science fiction to fact... and Bispham too

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It’s amazing how science fiction can, within such a short time, become science fact

This was brought home to me when I was told recently that within 200 yards of the flat in Islington where George Orwell had the idea for 1984 there were now 32 CCTV cameras.

So what links does the first picture (above) have with Harriett Beecher Stowe’s novel of the same name published in 1852, ie Uncle Tom’s Cabin?

The only link I can find is that in the late 19th century as well as advertising its “fairground, swings dancing and orchestra”, the Cabin also claimed you could have “Your American Portrait taken and finished while you wait“.

In days before many people owned their own cameras – let alone digital or phone cameras – this would have been a portrait of a lifetime.

When the original Uncle Tom’s Cabin was built on the sea front at Bispham no one gave a thought to erosion, but in 1907 the whole structure had to be demolished for fear it would collapse into the sea.

Harriett Beecher Stow’s novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin changed forever the way Americans viewed slavery and the idea that you could simply treat people as property.

Another person who transformed our thinking was Sir Isaac Newton who died on this day, March 20, in 1727. His most famous contribution to science was the law of gravity, inspired we are told by the fall of an apple in his garden. I remember too that at school we were taught that he also formulated three laws of motion, the third of which states that for every action there is always an opposed and equal reaction.

With my second picture (bottom, left) I thank you for your reaction to my request for any old local pictures you might share with our readers. On the back of this are the words “Weather glorious, digs OK, Uncle Tom‘s fantastic, but cash running out”.

My last picture (bottom, right) from some 20 years ago is of children of St Mary‘s School, Great Eccleston, doing some tree planting. I wonder how tall these trees are now?