Let Me Tell You: Swindon opening titles
Let Me Tell You: Swindon
Watch a BBC West programme from 1967, whose presenters went out onto the streets to ask locals what they thought of life in Swindon, and look at the pressing issues of the town.
Let Me Tell You was a BBC West TV series which aired in the mid 1960s. Each week, presenters Meryl O'Keeffe and Frank Hennig would visit a different town in the South West, meet local people and find out what issues concerned them about the area in which they lived.
Swindon train station in 1967
Broadcast on 12th January 1967 was an edition of the show which looked at life in Swindon.
Set to jaunty big band music, the title sequence shows a quick succession of places in and around the town such as the train station (looking remarkably different to how it does now), the Town Hall and the bustling, pre-pedestrianised Regent Street.
The early part of the programme focuses on retired railway workers who were angry that a gratuity they were paid before the National Pension Scheme came in, was now subject to a mandatory weekly deduction.
The newly built Nythe estate
Presenter Frank Hennig is later seen meeting a female Swindon traffic warden who is asked if she feels ostracised doing such a job. He also rather quaintly comments that it's 'rather a strange job for a lady'!
Later on it's suggested that loneliness and depression are some of the emerging problems developing on some of the newly-built outlying housing estates in the town.
Hennig pays a visit to Nythe and doorsteps some housewives to find out if this is something they feel has affected them.
The controversial water feature on The Parade
The most amusing part of the programme comes about halfway through when presenter Meryl O'Keeffe visits The Parade in the town shopping centre and asks locals what they think of the newly installed, unusual concrete water feature.
Comments range from "it's a monstrosity!" to "what an eyesore", and "the best thing they could do is stick a bomb under it and blow it up".
In fairness, one doubts if anyone who remembers the sculpture - which stood outside British Home Stores until the late 1970s - would look back fondly to it.
Presenter Meryl O'Keeffe
The programme rounds up with Frank Hennig visiting Park Grammar School which had recently been chosen to participate in a national applied science scheme.
Pupils are shown building their own model hovercraft as part of the scheme which was designed to encourage children to apply scientific theory to such projects.
'Let Me Tell You: Swindon' is a fascinating snapshot of life in the town in the Swinging Sixties - and will appeal to anyone who remembers the town of the time - or is interested in its history.
last updated: 05/03/2010 at 11:49
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charlie and danielle knights