Sunday, 30 August 2009

Looking Back - Notting Hill Carnival Ends In Riot

On this day in 1976, more than 100 police officers had to be taken to hospital after clashes at the Notting Hill Carnival in west London. Most were released after treatment bbbut at least 26 have been detained overnight for observation or further treatment. Around 60 carnival-goers also needed hospital treatment after the clashes which led to the arreast of at least 66 people.
The trouble is belived to have started after police tried to arrest a pickpocket near Portobello Road on the main carnival route. Several blakyouths went to the pickpocket's aid and within minutes the disturbance escalated.
The police were tacked with stones and other missiles. They armed themselves with dustbin lids, milk crates and wire fencing and charged the rioters. At one stage a group of black youths were seen moving up Westbourne Park road smashing windows. Gangs of white youths were also said to have been involved in the violence.
One witness, Raymond Hunter, who lives in Westbourne Park road, said he saw a police van set alight. "The two policemen managed to get out of the van and fled. The gang then turned the van over and set fire to it," said Mr Hunter.
The disturbance effectively put an end to the annual celebration of Caribbean culture. In the past 10 years the event had been largely peaceful in spite of tensions with the police.
A member of the Notting Hill Carnival Development Committee, Selwyn Baptiste, said they had been optimistic after the first day of the festival passed off peacefully. "WE had no reason to suppose it would be any different today. This was supposed to be about fun and love - not violence," Mr Baptiste said.
In a subsequent trial 17 black youths faced 79 charges. However, only two were convicted of carnival related offences after the court case which cost a record £250,000. In 2000 there were two murders during the carnival
The London district of Notting Hill had a history of racial problems. In 1958 it was the scene of race riots instgated by the fascist British Union whose "Teddy boys" clashed with local black people. Relations between the black community and police had also been prblematic over the years.

To watch a video clip of the events, click on the following link.

Today's Smile

Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways - Chardonnay in one hand - chocolate in the other - body totally used up, totally worn out, and screaming, "WOO HOO what a ride."

Granny Knew Best

Today we take a look at some of the medications used by our great grandmothers. Many of these treatments were very effective, the contents of some will shock you.
Bayer's Heroin
Between 1890-1910 heroin was sold as a non-addictive substitute foe morphine. It was also used to treat children with strong cough.
Coca Wine
Mariani Wine

Mariani wine (1875) was the most famous Coca wine of its time. Pope Leo XIII used to carry one bottle with him all the time. He awarded Angelo Mariani (the producer) with a Vatican gold medal.

Living With Computers

Funny Signs

In a Texas funeral parlour: Ask about our layaway plan.
In the vestry of a New England church: Will the last person to leave please see that the perpetual light is extinguished.
In the window of a Swedish furrier: Fur coats made for ladies from their own skins.
Swiss mountain inn: Special today - no ice cream.
Notice in a Norwegian cocktail lounge: Ladies are requested not to have children in the bar.

Who Am I ? - Saturday's Answer

The answer to Saturday's
Who Am I? puzzle
Alistair Darling

Signs Of Growing Old

You actually eat breakfast food at breakfast time.
"I just can't drink the way I used to" is replaced by "I'm never going to drink that much again."
90% of the time you spend in front of a computer is for real work.
You drink at home to save money before going to the bar.
When you find out your friend is pregnant you congratulate them instead of asking "Oh shit, what the hell happened?"