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GRAHAM TURNER: My view of the 70s is not rose-tinted

A personal view
A personal view

It appears that 1970s style is coming back into fashion which, for some, will foster feelings of nostalgia while other (younger) folk will perhaps welcome it as ‘retro chic’.

Though I have fond memories of my teenage years, none of them are fashion related. In fact, apart from the frenzied and welcome arrival of punk and new wave music, I reckon it’s a decade that’s best consigned to history – and left there.

In my mind’s eye (and unfortunately captured as a near psychedelic backdrop in family photographs), I can still see the awful bold geometric patterns that covered the walls and furniture in my parents’ home.

Brown, orange, dark green, yellow . . . colours that have long been avoided are apparently making a comeback. Perhaps if we’d known that, my wife and I wouldn’t have spent a fortune ripping out the original fittings of our 1970s-built house. An orangey-brown bathroom suite and a green cloakroom wc and hand basin were the first to go into the skip – they’d probably cost you a fortune in a reclamation yard today. And even now, when I’m decorating, I often come across evidence of lime green and orange-painted walls.

And it seems this fondness for the colour palette of my youth also extends to cars.

It was reported this week by car valuation company CAP Automotive that consumers are starting to seek out vehicles in these hues. The company says there are a number of possible reasons for this, including consumers wanting to own something a bit different, with these colours less commonly offered by manufacturers.

The report also suggests that the American fondness for brown cars is making its way across the Atlantic. US drivers, it says, see brown as representing ‘stability and comfort’.

Always ahead of my time, I’m pleased to be able to report that my first car – a Mk I Ford Escort bought in the early 1980s, but quite definitely a 1970s model – was a less than delicious orange colour. A junior reporter didn’t earn enough to be fussy.

I’d like to say things improved, but my next purchase was a disastrous (again 1970s) yellow Triumph Spitfire. I’ve read that yellow is the safest car colour because it’s most visible on the road; if that’s the case, it’s about the only thing the old heap had going for it.

-- In this week’s Bury Free Press, Bury’s General Election candidates give their views on local issues. It’s a welcome reminder that the election is about more than Cameron, Miliband and the other leaders slugging it out on national TV.

Whoever wins the Bury seat will, of course, be expected to support the party line, but more importantly they will be representing the constituency, and voters need to know that their MP has the courage to stand up for them.

Talking of local issues, it’s easy to forget council elections are also being held. These are the people charged with delivering services in your neighbourhood and your vote here is just as, if not more important, than that for the General Election.


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