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'News stories in 1948'

This section gives you an archive of the stories which made it into the national press during 1948.

'May 25'

Harold Wilson, president of the Board of Trade, announces a summer bonus of 12 clothing coupons per person to clear existing stocks and as an incentive for people to "spend extra coupons on high-coupon goods like coats and suits which we want to get out of the shops".

When asked his opinion on 'the New Look' the hugely popular fashion created by Chriatian Dior in 1947, he said, "I am not prepared to dictate women's fashions...but my predecessor made it clear that no new material will be made available so that New Look garments can be made in the same quantities as the old-style clothing".

Meanwhile, on the same day, the press report a "New Look girl bandit...a blonde with a ginger streak in her hair", dressed in a "bright red New Look coat" who, with an accomplice, raided a jeweller's shop in London. She is reported to have "sauntered into the shop" and then thrown pepper into the assistant's eyes.

'May 26'

The elections in South Africa are won by the segregationalist Nationalist Party. Led by David Marlon it brings apartheid policies into force.

'May 27'

At the Apollo theatre in London, stagehands fail to raise the curtain after the first act of 'The Happiest Days of Your Life'. Due to faulty wire ropes the two-ton curtain would not budge and it was reported the theatre manager came out 'amid laughter and cheers' to apologise and inform the audience they could have a refund of receive tickets for another show.

'May 28'

The Post Office announces that postmen will be allowed to wear open-necked shirts in hot weather during June to September.

'May 29'

Two new British ultra-light aircraft make a record 65 minute flight from Ostend to Folkestone. The planes made the 86 mile journey on only one and a half gallons of petrol each: the cheapest ever air crossing from Belgium to Britain.

Meanwhile the Motor Spirit Act (Regulations) Act 1948 is to come into force on June 1 defining commercial petrol as petrol containing dipherylam. Motorists are rationed to 90 miles worth of petrol per month.

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