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Merseyside History Section 1960AD - 2003AD

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This page is in construction.


Blue = High Town, Formby to Southport area
Red = Liverpool area  
Green = World event or national event
Year Event
1960 1960 building began the massive Royal Seaforth Dock, now known locally as Bootle Docks or the Liverpool Freeport.
1960 The 2nd phase of the UK's first motorway (M6) construction was completed forming the Lancaster by-pass.
1960 Hillside Golf Course extended in this year, the work continues for the next 5 years.
1960 Building started on the Catholic Cathedral, designed by Sir Frederick Gibberd.  
1960 Merseyside Tramway Preservation Society was founded by students at Liverpool University Public Transport Society.  The students wanted to save for posterity one of the city's famous bogie streamliner tramcars. 
1961 The Widnes-Runcorn bridge opened, it's the largest span-arch bridge in Europe.   The Transporter Bridge was closed the very next day.
1962 The Concert Pavilion in Southport finally closes in this year, having been used for theatre and cinema for the majority of it's long life.
1962 The once fledgling United States of America is now a major player in the World and following World War 2, and the last Notable Consul John S. Service, in Liverpool, leaves his post. Liverpool had declined in importance as a trading partner with the United States, and the first ever US consulate in the world, on Paradise Street, Liverpool, was closed down in this year as well. 
1963 A quota scheme for would-be immigrants was introduced under which vouchers were issued.  Not more than a quarter of vouchers going to any one country. 
1963  President Kennedy assassinated in the November of this year.  
1963 British Merseybeat band, The Swinging Blue Jeans, reach no. 1 in the charts with Hippy Hippy Shake.  
1963 Fort Crosby and about 170Ha sold to Crosby Council for £2000.
1963 The Great train Robbery.
1964 Harold Wilson, a local MP is made Prime Minister
1964 School leaving age raised to 16. Opening of BBC-2.
1965 A Council survey of Formby finds that 10,000 visited the area, in a single day, 82% of them arriving by car.
1965 Winston Churchill dies. 70mph speed limits come into force on British Roads.
1965 Opening of the Pennine way.
1965 The Spitfire to ever fly in British Military on an active service roll took of from Woodvale. 
1966 The first length of the coastal road opened for use, to and from Woodvale and Southport
1966 England wins World Cup. Commonwealth day to be observed from this year on.
1967 First heart transplant successful.  
1967 Sexual Offences Act decriminalized homosexual practices above the age of 18 in the UK.  
1967 On the 1 of April, Liverpool City Police Amalgamated with Bootle Borough Police to form Liverpool and Bootle Constabulary.
1967 Queen Elizabeth II launched at Clydebank. 
1967 Catholic Cathedral consecrated.
1967 Birkenhead Borough Police and Wallasey Borough Police merged with Cheshire Constabulary on July 1.
1967 Abortion Act introduced, legalizing abortion in the UK under certain conditions.  UK membership of EC vetoed to by De Gaulle into EC.
1968 The last scheduled steam-hauled British Rail passenger train leaves Liverpool for Preston.
1968  Conservative MP Enoch Powell provoked the nation with his anti-immigration "Rivers of Blood'" The speech was dramatized at times with the references to classical prediction of war by Virgil:- "The immigrant communities can organise to consolidate their members, to agitate and campaign against their fellow citizens, and to overawe and dominate the rest with the legal weapons which the ignorant and ill-informed have provided. As I look ahead, I am filled with foreboding... Like the Roman, I seem to see, 'the River Tiber foaming with much blood".  It lead to Powell being sacked from the Shadow Cabinet, with Edward Heath interpreting his speech as "racist".
1969 Pontins opened on Ainsdale Sands.
1969 Man Lands on the Moon. John Fairfax single-handedly rows across the Atlantic.  
1969 Divorce Reform Act in the UK relaxed the conditions surrounding the termination of marriage.    
1969 Voting age now 18. 
1969 St Helens Borough Police and Southport Borough Police merged with Lancashire Constabulary on the 1 April.
1969 Colour TV introduced in the UK. 
1969 End of the Death Penalty in the UK.
1970 The end of Harold Wilson's first term in office.  
1970 St John's Tower Constructed.
1971 Kingsway Tunnel opened by the Queen.
1971  Decimal currency and the European Community.   New decimal currency introduced in 1971 and it took three years to achieve.  Coinage became the official currency of the UK on 15 February 1971 with the issue of the 1/2p, 1p and 2p pieces. The British public expressed a fond farewell to the romantic £ sd coinage.
1971  The light from the Perch Rock Lighthouse shone for the last time. 
1972 1972 the Royal Seaforth Dock opens. Also it was the first UK port with radar assisted opearations.
1973 VAT introduced in the UK.      
1973 Official end to the Vietnam war.
1973 Britain joins the EC having first applied to join five years previously 
1974 MP Harold Wilson voted Prime Minister again. 
1974 The British Nicotine Company of Bootle closes down. 
1974 Liverpool and Bootle Constabulary and those parts of Lancashire and Cheshire which fell within the new Merseyside boundary merged to form Merseyside Police on April 1.
1974 Britain returns to a five day week?  Labour demands renegotiations with EC.
1974 Merseyside is created.
1974 Liverpool and Bootle Constabulary and parts of Lancashire and Cheshire which fell within the new Merseyside boundary merged to form Merseyside Police.
1975 First-ever UK referendum held by Labour to see if public wanted to stay in EC.  
1975 UK public vote in favour of remaining an EC member.
1975 Runcorn-Widnes Road Bridge closed to widen to four lanes.
1976 Harold Wilsons term ends here.  
1976 The Anglican Cathedral is finished, 18 years after the architect, Giles Gilbert Scott, died, aged 80
1977 Runcorn-Widnes Road Bridge re-opened and renamed the Silver Jubilee bridge. 
1978 Sefton Council Management Scheme established.
1978 Start of Winter of Discontent.  Labour Government had to seek a loan from the International Monetary Fund due to the British economy becoming weak.  This was accompanied by harsh conditions which included deep cuts in public spending. By August 1977, unemployment levels had been driven well over 1,600,000 all over the UK.  This lead to the major trade unions going on strike.
1978 Queen Elizabeth II attended the dedication of the West end of Liverpool Cathedral. The building was now complete.
1979 End of Winter of Discontent.  This led to the dustbins going unemptied,  power outages, dead not being buried and other problems.  By the election of May in 1979 the PM James Callaghan, seemed out of touch and he was voted out with that Labour government.  Voted in as MP, Margaret Thatcher of the Conservative Party, decade of radical change in England and Britain.  Nickname Iron Lady, she was the first female Prime Minister for the UK. 
1981 Lady Diana Spencer married Prince Charles the Prince of Wales in an elaborate ceremony at Westminster which brought crowds flooding to London.
1981  The Merseyside Development Corporation created and work started on restoring 865 acres of docklands.  
1981  Brixton and Toxteth Riots.

The Falklands War, also known as the Falklands Conflict or Falklands Crisis, began on Friday 2 April 1982, when Argentine forces invaded and occupied the Falkland Islands and South Georgia. The Falklands War or in Spanish Guerra de las Malvinas or Guerra del AtlŠntico Sur, was a war between Argentina and the United Kingdom. This was last time the United Kingdom has gone to war on it's own. The resulting conflict lasted 74 days and ending with the Argentine forces surrendering on 14 June 1982. 255 British military personnel and 3 Falkland Islanders died, along with a staggering 649 Argentine military personnel died during the conflict.

1983 The Altcar Rifle Range official declared clear of explosives.
1983 The remains of Fort Crosby finally broken up and buried in the sand, this came as a result of Derelict-land grants, and attempts to re-establish the natural order on the dunes.
1984 Mersey Inshore Rescue team starts operation on the river Mersey. The first full time river rescue service working in the UK. It's principal reason for being is to be able to respond to an air disaster at Liverpool Airport. To be added soon 
1984 Liverpool Garden Festival, which involved the landscaping of 250 acres of derelict land.
1984 Brighton Bomb.   12th October, the IRA bombed the Grand Hotel in Brighton where the Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and most of her Party were staying as they were attending the Conservative Party Conference. Five people died.  Miners Strike began due to a confrontation between the PM, Margaret Thatcher and the President of the NUM (the National Union of Mineworkers) Arthur Scargill leading to some of the most violent confrontations between trade unionists and police ever seen in England. The miners drifted back to work after twelve months of hardship and the strike collapsed.  Falklands War starts.
1985 International Garden Festival site in Liverpool is re-opened as the Festival Gardens for anouther year.
1988  A minor revolution in UK's art world that is now recognized the world over as a form of contemporary art known as "Britart" hits the UK's art world with the thanks of Damien Hirst, the original Brit artist.
1989 Iranian Embassy Siege, SAS are sent in to free the hostages, total success.
1989 A statistical analysis of data from the last 12 years records that the average number of visitors to Formby point per day was around 3700, with 2 days recording 11,000 and 14,000 higher than a similar study made back in 1965.  
1989 Southport re-opens its lifeboat station in response to lose of life just of the coast of  the town.  
1990 Gulf War starts.  Margaret Hilda Thatcher, Baroness Thatcher, LG OM PC FRS is voted out of office and losses her leadership of the Conservative Party.   The poll tax led to widespread riots across UK.  WEB
1991 Gulf War ends. 
1995 Formby hosts the biggest VJ day in the whole of the North West.
1997 Lady Diana Spencer died in a tragic road death that left the nation and world in mourning. Massive amount of flowers and visitors went to London's Buckingham Palace.  The outpouring of emotion was unprecedented.  
1997 Tony Blair helped to form New Labour and became prime minister in May.
1999 A wind farm with 6 turbines is opened at Seaforth. 
2000  Start of a new Millennium. Fears of the Millennium Bug (a computer error) did not come true.
2000  Large firework displays light up Liverpool, Formby and Southport at 00:00 hours and parties take place with Liverpool town center being cornered off and a large pop concert and fun fair by the Albert Dock. The event lasts over 3 days into the New Year.   The foundations of the UK's first Online Only Newspaper, Southport Reporter are put online as an experiment.
2001 September the 11th, (9:11) terrorist attack the trade towers in New York, using planes to ram them destroying both buildings.  This also leads to the war on terrorism led by the USA.
2001 Formby Millennium Committee organise a large pop and Viking event on the Formby Sand Dunes to celebrate the new century and to raise funds for local charity. 
2002 Queen Mother dies.
2002 The newspaper called Freestyle founded and closed the same year after 1 edition being published.
2002 Birkdale Sands airstrip declassified by the Civil Aviation authority.  Formby Arts Festival with mediaeval re-enactments on Formby sand dunes draws huge crowds on the historic site of the UK's first Lifeboat Station to celebrate the Queen's Golden Jubilee and raise cash for local charities. 
2003 See Southport Reporter 

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