One hundred years ago – January 1919.

At the beginning of January it was announced by the Food Controller, Mr Clynes, that no more ration books will be printed. The current issue will expire on April 19th. Margarine will be the first rationed food to be “de-rationed” and butter probably the last to regain its freedom. The meat situation is already improving thanks to deliveries from Argentina and it is hoped that the sugar supply will improve next month.

Later in January it was stated that there might still be some food rationing after April but that it would be much less restrictive.

Heavy rains have reduced farm land to a sodden condition and almost all work has been at a standstill. The autumn sown wheat, oats and beans look promising, but straw is very scarce at present.

Bideford Chamber of Trade has received a letter from the Paper Controller expressing thanks for the large quantity of waste paper collected by the local community.

Mr T Williams, carrier, of Hartland advertises that he now runs a service to Bideford on Thursdays as well as on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Two lambs were born at Norton Farm on January 8th, believed to be the first of the year.

Bideford Rural Council hopes to obtain a portion of the Government Road Improvement Grant to convert the track of the Bideford to Appledore Railway to a metalled road. With its straight course and easy gradients it is believed that this would be a great service to the public.

W Huxtable of Heale Farm, Littleham appeals for help in finding a lost two year old dark Devon heifer. A black Pekinese bitch has strayed from Firsball, Woodtown and two homing pigeons belonging to Mr Lewis have failed to return to their loft in Bridgeland Street.

Messrs R Blackmore & Sons have sold by auction fifty Army horses. All were sold within one and a half hours, prices ranging from £30 to £73.

A public meeting was held at Northam National School to discuss erecting a public memorial to parishioners who had fallen in the War. The War Office has promised a captured machine gun for the village. Proposals included a new village hall, a cross in the Square and a shelter for the aged on Bone Hill. A small committee has been formed to consider these ideas and consult with the families concerned.

These and many more items of local interest are available to read at the Bideford Community Archive at the Council Offices, Windmill Lane, Northam. Tel: 01237 471714. Open Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday mornings or visit our website www.bidefordarchive.org.uk

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