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DVD Review

DVD cover

A Year to Remember
The 1970s


Strike Force Entertainment / Cherry Red Records
RRP: £24.99
Certificate: E
Available 25 October 2010

Using rare contemporary news footage and interviews from the BBC, British Pathé and other news services, this extraordinary series provides a unique year by year look at what made the news of yesteryear.

This DVD this collection is split into 10 programmes, each an hour long and focusing on one year in the '70s. Over the course of this three disc collection there are a number of items that we revisit year after year to discover the latest developments. These include various industrial disputes, the troubles in Ireland, the cod war and Britain's fixation with boxing.

Highlights in this collection include:

1970: Heavy snow falling in parts of the UK; student demonstrations; the demolition of four large chimneys in Bletchley in order to make way for the construction of Milton Keynes; and the infamous Charles Manson court case.

1971: The launch of the Harrier jet; decimalisation; the opening of Disney World in Florida; and London Bridge being shipped and rebuilt in Arizona.

1972: Bloody Sunday; Charlie Chaplin returns to America for the first time in 20 years; the opening of Spaghetti Junction; the death of the Duke of Windsor; the start of the Watergate scandal; and Dutch Elm disease hits the UK hard.

1973: Noel Coward dies aged 73; the introduction of VAT (at 10%) on April Fools Day; Red Rum wins the Grand National; the death of Picasso; and Princess Anne is married.

1974: Three day working week introduced because of the ongoing industrial disputes that also led to food shortages and regular power cuts; Ronnie Biggs, Great Train robber, is arrested by the Brazilians; Harold Wilson moves into 10 Downing Street; attempted kidnap of Princess Anne; Red Rum wins second Grand National; President Nixon resigns; and Lord Lucan disappears.

1975: Jeeves and Wooster author P.G. Wodehouse is knighted at the age of 93, sadly he died six weeks later; Moorgate tube accident; Margaret Thatcher takes over as leader of the opposition; Charles Chaplin is knighted; Birmingham six court case; and the Queen Mother celebrates her 75th birthday.

1976: Concorde's first commercial flight; Harold Wilson resigns; South End Pier fire; Britain goes through a heat wave; Nottinghill Carnival riots; Percy Shaw, inventor of the 'cat's eye', dies; Jimmy Carter elected in America; and composer Benjamin Britten dies.

1977: The Queen's silver jubilee; Elvis Presley dies; Steve Biko dies in South Africa while in police custody; Bing Crosby dies; silver jubilee of the West End play The Mousetrap; and Lady Spencer Churchill (Winston Churchill's wife) dies aged 92.

1978: Charles Chaplin dies and his body is stolen from his grave; Pope Paul VI dies and his successor Pope John Paul dies after only 33 days in office - and Pope John Paul II takes up office; and Gracie Fields is made a dame.

1979: Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary Airey Neave, a close adviser to Margaret Thatcher, is killed in an IRA car bomb; a two-mile long sausage breaks into the record books; and Lord Mountbatten is killed when the IRA blew up his boat.

For those that remember the '70s this is an interesting reminder of what major events you lived through.


Darren Rea

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