BRACKNELL’S roads were suffering from a spate of deep pot holes in the winter of 1969 and local drivers were even complaining to police-in an effort to get the problem sorted out. Chairman of Bracknell Residents’ Association, Bernard Groves,told the News: “We have had to suffer these appalling roads for too long-it is bad enough to have our tyres ripped to shreds-but when life and limb are in jeopardy its time the authorities did some urgent repairs.”

Two local unmanned railway stations in Sandhurst Halt and Crowthorne were “rapidly deteriorating” it was revealed 49 years ago with gaps in platforms and “deplorable” waiting rooms. Easthampstead Rural District Councillor Bill Brown told the News:”There has been a serious deterioration in the conditions at Crowthorne Station and there is now a case for this to be manned again at peak periods.”

Bracknell Sports Centre-which had previously been described as a “white elephant”-could not have got off to a worse New Year as it published its financial figures.

Expenditure on the centre was £73,752 and income totalled £24,168-leaving a heavy loss of £49,854 ,plus the open-air pool in Broad Lane,had made a loss of £4,532.

One possible way to help prevent such heavy losses were made by Cllr.Tony Hopgood,who suggested people from outside the rural district should be charged higher fees than local ratepayers.

Construction workers, and their Alsatian guard dogs in Great Hollands, were becoming confused and spooked by the sounds coming from nearby buildings back in ’69.

They had every right to be unnerved,as the noises were coming from a barn full of lions, bison and leopards-with llamas, monkeys and donkeys thrown in for good measure.

The ‘Scooby Doo’ style mystery was quickly solved by the Bracknell News (of course) as the buildings had just become the winter home for Hoffman’s circus who were getting their equipment ready for the next year’s touring season.

The new East Side Shopping Centre was taking shape along with a new four-storey car park at the top end of the Crossway in Bracknell.

To coincide with the opening a Bracknell Development Corporation spokesman stated that there will be “an overall review of policy concerning payments for parking in the New Town.”

It may seem like a different world away but house prices in 1969 were, on average,below £10,000 and the News had a special feature in its property section which highlighted four ‘Houses of the week’.

Give or take a few hundred pounds a three-bedroomed semi was £5,400 and a four-bed detached £7,500.