What a tonic!

Medicine and silence may save many lives, but the best therapy of all to a man in hospital is the sight of a pretty girl – and these Watford Peace Memorial Hospital wing patients were given an intensive course of treatment on Thursday morning! The girls are all from the new James Bond extravaganza, Casino Royale, and they paid a visit to Watford to remind people that the film was in town.

[May 5, 1967]

Landmark goes

Another old Watford landmark has come under the demolition man’s hammer – the malting houses, which were originally built for Sedgwick’s Brewery, in Lower High Street. The buildings, which in more recent years were used by Benskin’s Brewery, were constructed in 1875.

[May 5, 1967]

Drug figures

Drugs-taking among young people came under the spotlight at two Watford meetings on Tuesday. But disturbing though the drug trend is, it does not appear to be as widespread in the district as many people fear. The Divisional Medical Officer of Health told the Observer that inquiries from various sources in the area during 1966 produced a total of 58 people thought to be taking drugs.

[May 12, 1967]

Raid at film studios

Bandits carried out a ‘commando-style’ payroll raid on MGM Studios, Borehamwood, on Friday and got away with £3,000 in wages for about 200 film workers. Three men in a small blue van cut a large hole in the high wire fence surrounding the 114-acre studio and drove straight into the grounds unnoticed.

[May 12, 1967]

Watford miss promotion

Watford waited with bated breath on Tuesday night while 250 miles away two teams played out 90 minutes of football. The teams were Middlesbrough and Oxford United, and on the result of the game hung Watford FC’s hopes of promotion to Division 2 for the first time in their long history. In the boardroom at Vicarage Road directors and manage sat anxiously around the telephone. But Watford, hot favourites for the past fortnight, were pipped at the post.

[May 19, 1967]

Gunmen raid bank

Three masked gunmen, wielding pick-axes, smashed their way through the plate glass doors of Barclays Bank, Shenley Road, Borehamwood, yesterday, and escaped with £300. Bank staff ducked under the counters as two of the bandits fired shots into the walls and ceiling. Then one of the raiders vaulted the counter and grabbed a black cash-box containing £300 in silver and copper. The raiders rushed out into the street and dived into a waiting gold-coloured E-type Jaguar which sped off in the direction of the A1.

[May 26, 1967]

Ricky Week

With still an exciting weekend to look forward to as a climax, Ricky Week 1967 is already being described as a success by the organiser Mrs Kay Mendelssohn. She is the woman who, having visited all the functions and with facts and figures at her fingertips, should know. “I am well satisfied with the way things are going,” she told the Observer.

[May 26, 1967]

Bumper weekend

The scene is set for a bumper holiday weekend in South West Herts. The highlight, of course, is the annual borough carnival in Cassiobury Park. The procession promises to be as long and certainly more interesting and colourful than last year’s, and only one thing remains unsettled – the weather. And here we can only hope.

[May 26, 1967]

What was happening in the world in May 1967?

• Elvis Presley and Priscilla Beaulieu were married in a civil ceremony in Las Vegas (May 1)

• A group of 40 members of the Black Panthers, armed with shotguns and rifles, forced their way into a session of the California House of Representatives as a protest against gun control (May 2)

• Lunar Orbiter 4 was launched by the US and became the first probe to enter into a polar orbit around the Moon (May 4)

• Rioting broke out in Hong Kong that would ultimately see 51 people killed and more than 800 injured in a clash between police and workers who had been fired from the Hong Kong Artificial Flower Works (May 6)

• The escalation of aerial bombardment in the Vietnam War reached a milestone with the flying of the 10,000th bombing sortie (May 6)

• In Tel Aviv, Prime Minister Levi Eshkol approved commencing a war with an attack on Syria (May 7)

• The UK House of Commons approved the government’s decision to apply for membership in the European Economic Community (May 10)

• The installation of the 100 millionth telephone in the US was celebrated (May 11)

• A crowd of at least 70,000 demonstrators marched down New York City’s Fifth Avenue in support of American troops fighting in the Vietnam War (May 13)

• General Electric announced the recall of 90,000 colour television sets because they emitted dangerously high levels of x-rays (May 18)

• The state of Tennessee repealed its law that made the teaching of evolution a criminal offence (May 18)

• In anticipation of war, Egypt called up its entire military reserve into service, while Palestinian commandos in the Gaza Strip announced they were ready to attack Israel (May 21)

• A fire at the largest department store in Brussels killed 322 people (May 22)

• The Naxalite guerrilla war began in India when police opened fire on a group of 2,000 local sharecroppers who were protesting their treatment by the landowners (May 25)

• In a referendum in Australia, voters overwhelmingly approved the removal of provisions in the Australian Constitution that allowed discrimination against indigenous Aborigines (May 27)

• Nigeria’s President Gowon declared a state of emergency and ordered the reorganisation of the nation into 12 states (May 27)