In this, my first offering of 2017, I wish all readers a very happy new year. As I begin my new diary, I am forcefully reminded the calendar is not the sole preserve of astronomer, accountants, for almost the whole span of human history the cycles of nature and the stars, have been the inspiration of poets, writers, and historians alike.
I do freely admit here that one of the canticles used by the church for almost 1000 years has baffled me since childhood days.
I mean the words, “O ye ice and snow bless ye the Lord, praise him and magnify him forever.”
As a youngster living in a Preston street, ice and snow meant frozen bedroom windows inside and out, a very slippery walk to school, and frozen up taps and toilets.
Despite candles and lamps in the latter, you never loitered to read the newspaper square on the hook behind the door.
How life has changed so much from a January then to January 2017.
My first picture today (right) is a snowdrift in Garstang in 1940. One thing that has not changed is the truth of the saying that in January as the days lengthen the cold strengthens.
Another church and another church street are in my second picture (left) Church Street Preston decorated for the 1952 Preston Guild.
This spot the picture was taken from had a model railway shop by it and if you put your coins in a box on the outside of the shop widow the model train ran inside the window.
We youngsters often made tracks to this track armed with cash from old pop bottle deposits.
My last picture (top)goes back a decade and shows part of the mayoral procession in Longridge that year. Do you recognise yourself or any other member of St John’s on it?