Life in South Tyneside in the year King Charles lll was born - the big events happening here as the Royals marked milestones
It was the year a future King came into the world, while another celebrated his silver wedding.
And while all that was happening, Princess Elizabeth was enjoying her 22nd birthday. All this happened in 1948.
Meanwhile in South Tyneside, school children got the day off and flags were flown from public buildings in the borough.
If you preferred to spend the day shopping, you could buy a washing machine and ‘wringer’ from Hardy’s in King Street for £14, 6 shillings and 11 pence.
The same store had carpet sweepers for 65 and 4, and an electric water heater for £9, 6 and 6.
How about a film? The Savoy picture house in South Shields was showing Fiddlers Three starring Tommy Trinder while the Palladium at Harton Nook had Deanna Durbin in Something In The Wind for your enjoyment.
Princess Elizabeth marked her 22nd birthday with a bash at Windsor Castle in the company of the King and Queen and her new husband, the Duke of Edinburgh. The headline in the Shields Gazette said ‘22 and so very happy’.
The story underneath it said: “Princess Elizabeth was up early today at Buckingham Palace. Over breakfast with her husband, the Princess read the first batches of the shoals of telegrams and messages of greeting.”
But life was about to change for the young princess. Unknown to the public, she was two months pregnant with her first child, Prince Charles.
Meanwhle, George VI and Queen Elizabeth were preparing to mark their silver wedding anniversary in a few days time.
South Shields Council sent a Silver Wedding message to mark the couple’s big day, while schoolchildren were given a day off and flags were flown from some public buildings.
Most South Tyneside people seemed content to spend the day quietly listening to celebratory radio broadcasts from London.
That was also the year when South Shields had a VIP visitor from another field.
South Shields-born Stan Mortensen, who later played the match of his life in the 1953 FA Cup Final for Blackpool, was paying a fleeting visit to his hometown and to the factory where he used to work – Wrights Biscuits. He happily signed autographs for the adoring factory girls,
And 1948 was a memorable year for another local man. Senior scout Ian Gitsham, of Frost Street, South Shields, a member of the 24th Tyne Dock Troop.
He was awarded the silver cross for the rescue of two young boys who he spotted drifting in a dinghy off the town’s North Foreshore.
Although only a moderate swimmer, he swam 100 yards from the beach and started towing the dinghy to shore.
Before he reached safety, the plug dropped out of the dinghy but showing great presence of mind, he put his finger in the hole and led the lads to safety.
Were you born in the same year as Prince Charles or is 1948 a landmark year in your family for another reason?
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