2 August 1957: Troublesome eccentrics plaque Belsize library

St Pancras council, which put its rents down when every other local authority was putting them up, is asked to explain its rents policy to the district auditor, after 15 ratepayers objected that

2 August 1957: Troublesome eccentrics plaque Belsize library

St Pancras council, which put its rents down when every other local authority was putting them up, is asked to explain its rents policy to the district auditor, after 15 ratepayers objected that an unreasonable burden was being placed on the rates.

Belsize branch library in Antrim Road, Hampstead is plagued by "troublesome eccentrics" says the librarian in his annual report. They are monocled old men with long hair, dowdily-dressed middle-aged women and a few foreigners, who turn the once peaceful reading room into a rowdy house. There is a time limit of 10 minutes on each of the periodicals and it is when readers keep them over the time limit that the rows begin. The "eccentrics" go up to offenders and complain, snatch the newspapers and magazine from one another, tearing them to shreds at times. They shout, swear and argue and at time nearly come to blows.

9 August 1957: Council cash for theatre 'supported by Communists'

Despite Conservative objections that the Council is being asked to spend ratepayers' money "propping up a theatre supported by the Communist Party", St Pancras Council is to grant £300 to the Unity Theatre in Goldington Street.

Tents go up on Hampstead Heath for the first time ever to house 12 Hampstead scouts, the high spot of local celebrations marking the jubilee of scouting.

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Miss Amy Gibbs, of Kentish Town, took up painting after retiring from the civil service. Her three pictures of Clacton, at the Heath Street open air show for two months, did not sell. When she came to take her pictures away she was astonished to hear that all the pictures had been sold and she had received seven guineas for them. All were sold to Sir Colin Anderson of Admiral's House, Hampstead Grove, who considers them a wonderful example of English folk art, and they will now sail the world in his Orient Line ships.

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