Flashback: Bakers on the breadline, unhappy ministers and the fight for Valentines Mansion

The children of Fulwood Primary School took part in a fancy dress day inspired by their favourite st

The children of Fulwood Primary School took part in a fancy dress day inspired by their favourite storybook characters, this week 20 years ago. - Credit: Archant

A look back at the biggest local stories from this week 20, 40 and 60 years ago.

1956: Small bakers in Ilford were left fearing they might be squeezed out of business as a result of a bread price war being led by larger firms.

With a government subsidy that kept the price of bread down due to be removed, big bakeries were planning on selling a large loaf at just 10 pence, but independent bakers revealed they would lose money if they sold bread for less than 11 pence.

Frank Hirtes has been negotiating on behalf of the town’s small bakeries, and was disappointed with the news.

“The average baker cannot possibly sell at that price,” he revealed.

“He would lose over two shillings a sack compared to what he was getting with the subsidy.

1976: An Ilford minister was upset for a rather unconventional reason - workmen were not knocking down a church fast enough.

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The Rev. George Thompson-Brake, superintendant Methodist minister for Ilford, was upset that after four months of demolition work, Cranbrook Park Methodist church in The Drive, Ilford, had still not been fully destroyed.

He said: “Residents who have had to put up with noise, mess and dust most of the summer are getting extremely angry and I don’t blame them.”

Church authorities had decided the building should be knocked down to provide some much needed sheltered housing on the land, but the reverend expected work to be finished within two weeks.

The main reason for the delay appeared to be the lack of ramps up the pavement meaning vehicles had been having difficulty accessing the site.

1996: Campaigners fighting plans to turn Valentines Mansion into a pub restaurant launched an appeal for residents to provide donations to continue the battle.

The Cranbrook Residents Association appealed for cash donations to fund two separate working parties - one to run a campaign against the proposed pub deal and another to explore alternative schemes that would return the mansion to community use.

Their hope was to turn the mansion into a museum.