Fylde nostalgia January 1982: Baltic winter, blaze rescue drama and birds were like a scene from Hitchcock movie

Here's a look at some of the stories that were making the headlines in January 1982

Friday, 10th January 2020, 5:00 pm

Baltic conditions caused chaos

The bitter winter weather continued in January 1982.

It was feared that further cold weather in the forecast could spell death for Blackpool Zoo’s 88 animals and birds.

Snow caused major problems in Blackpool in January 1982

Careful attention to heating and feeding had restricted casualties to a few small birds nearing the end of their natural lives.

But, zoo director Cyril Grace said another two weeks would see many animals exhausted and their health could deteriorate rapidly.

Elsewhere, firemen axed dangerous icicles in Dickson Road.

A leak from a second floor room formed half a dozen six foot icicles above the pavement.

Graham Curry and his wife Patricia

And in Fleetwood, the sub zero temperatures were causing the port’s fish discharges to seize up. They were clogged with ice. More snow pictures: https://www.blackpoolgazette.co.uk/retro/snow-pictures-how-the-bitter-winter-of-1981-82-gripped-the-fylde-coast-1-10191994Baby rescue drama

An ambulanceman was to receive a top award for helping save a baby ffrom a smok-filled Blackpool flat. Self-effacing hero Graham Curry was to be recommended for Lancashire Area Health Authority’s highest award - the Certificate of Merit.

He said of the rescue: “It was just another job.”

The 27-year-old braved dense smoke as he battled to help save a baby girl from the blazing flat.

Mr Curry and a collegue were close by when they first received the call and when they arrived at the scene, a woman was screaming that there was a baby in the top flat.

Mr Curry said: “I got down on my hands and knees and crawled in but was beaten back by the smoke.”

Making a second attempt to crawl in, two passers by managed to climb onto the ledge under a bedroom window. Mr Curry called to them as they emerged from the flat with the baby. They then dashed downstairs where mr Curry revived the child with oxygen. The county’s ambulance chief Ken Jones said it had been a praiseworthy rescue attempt in difficult circumstances.

Roosting birds made their mark at dusk

Residents in two Blackpool streets could have been forgiven for thinking the chilling Hitchcock thriller ‘The Birds’ was being refilmed on their doorsteps.

For out of the sky descended a flock of mischievous starlings who decided to roost for the night in the trees in Mere Road and West Park Road.

Needless to say that meant motorists and householders were faced with an added cleaning up chore to compound the problems of fog and frost.

Newsagent Molly Nixon said: “They didn’t seem to cause any damage but the area was full of droppings, people said it was awful.

Neighbour Alex Kay, a butcher, complained of the footpaths being covered in droppings.

“Someone had been walking down the road in a black raincoat and when they came to the end, it was white,” he said.