Wednesday, 1 August 2012

D A Woolgar is 50 today

1962, a year which saw US President John F Kennedy and Russian President Nikita Khrushchev take the world to the brink of nuclear war during the Cuban missile crisis.

Harold Macmillan was prime minister, presiding over a period of renewed prosperity following the enforced frugality of the immediate post-war era. The annual inflation rate was 1.1%, compared with the current rate of 2.9% and unemployment was negligible.

The average house price stood at £2,670, the average yearly pay was £799 and a loaf of white bread which would cost 11.5d (4.5 p).

A pint of milk would have set you back 1 shilling 4d (6.5p) and a pint of beer 2 shillings 4d (11.5p).

The most popular baby names in 1962 were David and Susan

screen legend Marilyn Monroe was discovered dead in the bedroom of her Los Angeles home after an apparent overdose; Brazil retained the football World Cup, beating Czechoslovakia 3-1 in the final in Chile and the first commercial communications satellite, Telstar, was successfully launched by the US.

The top-selling single in the UK in 1962 was the yodelling Frank Ifield's I Remember You. Cliff Richard was the golden boy of British pop, with The Young Ones and The Next Time/Bachelor Boy both topping the charts. The teddy boy look was de rigueur among young males, with tight jeans all the rage for both sexes. Meanwhile, Love Me Do, the debut single by little-known Liverpool band the Beatles limped into the charts at number 17.

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