What did children do in the 1970s?

Watch: Children in the 1970s

Find out what life was like for children in the 1970s.

Society in Britain

In the 1970s Britain was a fast-changing society.

  • Black and Asian people immigrated to Britain in the 1960s and 1970s. Many settled in big cities such as London, Birmingham, Bradford and Leicester. They brought with them a rich variety of cultures, clothes and cuisine.

  • Fast food restaurants serving hamburgers, fried chicken and French fries arrived in Britain and became popular during the 1970s.

  • Long hair was in fashion as well as flared trousers and flowery shirts.

Colour TV and the first games consoles

  • Video games started to become popular.

  • The first ‘Star Wars’ film hit the cinemas in 1977. Children worldwide collected the toy figures, wore costumes and played with light sabres and Darth Vader masks.

  • The Space Hopper was still a popular toy for playing outdoors.

  • Raleigh bicycles released the 'Chopper' bicycle, which became very popular.

  • TV was in colour and there were many children’s programmes now.

By the 1970s colour TV sets like this one were much more common in households.

Did you know?

British Airways Concorde on display in 1976 with a long line of people waiting to tour through the plane.
  • British Airways Concorde, the fastest plane in the world, made its first commercial flight in 1976.

  • In 1976, Britain had a heat wave. It was the hottest Summer for 350 years.

  • In 1977, Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her silver jubilee. She had been on the throne for 25 years. There were street parties and many children were given a special silver jubilee coin.


Activity 1: Children in the 1970s quiz

Activity 2: 1970s colouring sheet

Download and print this colouring sheet of Lucy, Nathan and Uncle Marcus in the 1970s. Can you colour it in and label it with some of the items that were familiar to children in the 1970s?