When Prime Minister gave speech in Dunstable town centre

Sir Alec Douglas-Home addresses the crowd
Sir Alec Douglas-Home addresses the crowd

Older Dunstablians will be able to recognise quite a few familiar faces among the people pictured here on The Square, Dunstable, during the general election campaign of October 1964.

Those were the days when politicians travelled up and down the country presenting their opinions amid the mayhem of dozens of crowded election meetings, with a chance that a second or two from their speech might perhaps be featured in a TV or cinema newsreel.

There’s a movie cameraman well in evidence in this Yesteryear photo.

Centre of attention is Sir Alec Douglas-Home who had become Prime Minister just under a year earlier following the Profumo affair and the illness of Harold Macmillan.

He had been Foreign Secretary during the Cuban missile crisis, but his distinguished career did not save him from defeat by Harold Wilson in the election.

The familiar frontage of the Methodist Church is in the background to this photo alongside the premises of travel agent Wendy Cook, who was a dynamic local businesswoman of the time.

Also visible are the premises of Three Star Radio Taxis, Lockhart’s coal merchants and the old Transport Dining Rooms, catering for lorry drivers who could pull up on the Square for a break from their journey down the Watling Street.

> Yesteryear is compiled by John Buckledee, chairman of Dunstable and District Local History Society.