Nostalgic nod to the past thanks to snapshot of life

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I’m thinking of giving that Nick Knowles from DIY SOS a ring to see if he can sort out my childhood home.

My folks really have bitten off more than they can chew by deciding to sell on our old house. Let me explain.

As the last potential buyers withdrew on their surveyor’s advice, the job to bring the place up to spec continues.

Built during the reign of Queen Victoria, this lovely three-bed detached house in Ryde is in need of some urgent modernisation. Listen to me, I sound like an estate agent!

So, when was the house last upgraded? My folks didn’t know – but it wasn’t long before I found the answer.

The floorboards in my old bedroom had been ripped up to allow the house to be completely re-wired and, under the lino that had been covered by carpet, I found some old newspapers.

One edition of the Daily Sketch dated back to February 1965. This newspaper ceased printing in 1968 and was replaced by The Sun.

Inside was an advert for a Vauxhall Viva, taking 13 seconds to get from 0-50mph.

And the front page of the Isle of Wight’s weekly newspaper was so old that it didn’t contain any photographs and had the death and birth announcements on it instead.

It was fascinating to look back at this snapshot of life. It took me right back to the days long before the M27 was built and paddle steamers still crossed the Solent.

TV listings only showed BBC1 and Southern TV and only a few programmes on the new service, BBC 2, were mentioned.

The radio listings were even more archaic. Light, Home and Third Service listings were published. Of course, these were the dark days before lovely local radio came along!

So now you can see the colossal task my parents have.

That house has not been rewired since those newspapers were laid down and it’s about time it was dragged into the 21st century.

The next step will be to bin the black and white three channel TV set they still rent from Granada.