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Thread: Britain in the 60s

  1. #71
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    I would have thought that Fahrenheit was more German than American (wasn't it named after a German person of that name?) I am not too keen on adopting American traditions in Britain due to local incompatibility with them (Black Friday anyone?) but I would like to keep both Celsius and Fahrenheit on our temperature scales.

    It does feel more record-breaking when Fahrenheit is used (and doesn't feel that cold when it is quoted in winter).

    I know that the British Weights and Measures Association have been sounding off, sub-UKIP style for years that supermarkets, dairies, and other food producers have been ripping off consumers by converting pints to litres, and as a result selling less milk or drinks for the same price - 1 pint (568 ml) becomes 500 ml and so on, and canned foods had got the metric treatment as well. Birds Eye downsizing their Petit Pois (garden peas to you) from 680 g (1.5 kg) to 640 g - but the price remained the same. Mind you, as I mostly buy in bulk from the supermarket I would hardly recognise very small things such as that.
    I am now in my 40s (just in case anyone asks).

  2. #72
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    Daniel Gabriel Fahrenheit was German. The fahrenheit scale is based on the Romer scale where 60 is the boiling point of water and 0 is the freezing point of brine. It is possible that the Romer scale was intended to avoid negative numbers for low temperatures although at the time the value of absolute zero was unknown.

    Anders Celsius was Swedish but the celsius scale is actually half British as it is based on the work of Isaac Newton who proposed using the freezing and boiling points of water to create a temperature scale.

    Britain adopted fahrenheit as its official measurement of temperature in the late 18th century and refused to adopt celsius (despite a reasonable amount of public support) as a political decision because the French adopted celsius after the Revolution. The US at the time followed Britain.

  3. #73
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    Around half of the adult population in the 1960s didn't have a bank account. They paid their (usually weekly) wages in cash. It was common for factories to have a wage office where a security van would deliver a large amount of cash from a bank on Friday morning and clerks would spend the rest of the day stuffing notes and coins into envelopes. In the afternoon the factory workers would all queue up outside the wage office and collect their pay packets. The envelopes often had a notch in them where it was possible to count the notes without having to open it.

    If a person needed to a cash a cheque but they didn't have a bank account then they would take it to their local pub and the publican would cash it for them.

  4. #74
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    Wage snatches were a common crime for gangs to carry out when they knew a local factory was paying bonuses to their employees.

    Later on companies started issuing pay cheques that employees could cash in at banks, possibly even if they didn't have an account.

    Girobank was one government scheme to get people to get an account, available at most post offices. Unemployment benefit payments are still called giros by some people even though they probably stopped being paid by cheque a lot time ago.
    The Trickster On The Roof

  5. #75
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    There was quite a bit of public opposition towards having wages paid in cheques or directly into bank accounts well into the 1980s. Several trade unions also defended the concept of employees being paid in cash although I'm not sure whether it was to protect jobs or uphold popular opinion.

    One reason why wages paid in cash were so popular is that you could spend the money instantly. Cheques had the hassle of having to take them to the bank and wait a few days for the payment to clear. Banks were not always open at convenient times and the first cash machine was not installed until 1967 so you often couldn't access your hard earned money until Saturday morning. Large numbers of people who had wages paid in cheques cashed them at the pub on Friday night!

    In some towns Friday was late night shopping day because it was pay day.

  6. #76
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    Quote Originally Posted by tex View Post
    Peter noone is still alive but no longer part of HH.
    O/T - I saws him in 1982 in New York in a production of The Pirates Of Penzance
    Time flies like the wind, fruit flies like bananas - go figure!

  7. #77
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    Quote Originally Posted by zabadak View Post
    O/T - I saws him in 1982 in New York in a production of The Pirates Of Penzance
    Sentimental friend is my fave HH song, if one of todays boybands recorded this it would be a poptastic hit
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  8. #78
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    Quote Originally Posted by Arran View Post
    Around half of the adult population in the 1960s didn't have a bank account. They paid their (usually weekly) wages in cash. It was common for factories to have a wage office where a security van would deliver a large amount of cash from a bank on Friday morning and clerks would spend the rest of the day stuffing notes and coins into envelopes. In the afternoon the factory workers would all queue up outside the wage office and collect their pay packets. The envelopes often had a notch in them where it was possible to count the notes without having to open it.

    If a person needed to a cash a cheque but they didn't have a bank account then they would take it to their local pub and the publican would cash it for them.
    The banking system really modernised itself during the course of the 1960s - Barclays introduced cheque guarantee cards in 1966, and of course cashpoints were introduced the following year - Reg Varney (he of On the Buses fame of course) was the first person to use the machine in its Enfield branch. No coincidence that as we were about to become decimal a few years later that most of these changes probably happened to suit decimalisation which was to follow. It's difficult to think nowadays that one would have almost got stranded without them prior to that if one didn't have cash on them.

    And of course credit cards as well - Visa was connected to Barclays (hence Barclaycard) and the TSB, while Access was connected to Nat West, Lloyds, the Midland and other banks as well - of course it's Mastercard these days now. .
    I am now in my 40s (just in case anyone asks).

  9. #79
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard1978 View Post
    Wage snatches were a common crime for gangs to carry out when they knew a local factory was paying bonuses to their employees.
    Look at how big The Great Train Robbery was back in 1963 - a robbery of that size would be almost forgotten about in a week these days. Back then it was unpreceded - the amount stolen as well as the way it was stolen as well. And the day it happened also happened to be Ronnie Biggs' birthday as well.
    I am now in my 40s (just in case anyone asks).

  10. #80
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    Default Re: Britain in the 60s

    Quote Originally Posted by George 1978 View Post
    Look at how big The Great Train Robbery was back in 1963 - a robbery of that size would be almost forgotten about in a week these days. Back then it was unpreceded - the amount stolen as well as the way it was stolen as well. And the day it happened also happened to be Ronnie Biggs' birthday as well.
    It was a consignment of old notes being taken to be incinerated, & they timed the raid to be after a bank holiday when there would be a larger amount.

    I doubt as much cash as they stole would be moved in one go these days.
    The Trickster On The Roof

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