A time of the year for weather issues

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It is an astounding thing to realise that the first national lottery in England was not in our time but on this day in 1569 and held in St Paul’s Cathedral, London, with all the proceeds going to public works.

Another fact for those who are diabetics is to remember is that it was on January 11, 1922, when insulin was first used to treat the condition.

It was given to a 14-year-old boy called Leonard Thompson in Canada.

A thing all of us rely on is the weather forecast.

And it was at 7.55pm on this day in 1954 that George Cowling of the Meteorological Office became the first weatherman to appear on BBC television.

Another weather fact –and my first picture today (top) – I did not realise it is nine years since a force 10 gale brought MS Riverdance aground off Cleveleys.

The ship had set sail from Ireland on its route to Heysham.

The stranded vessel was finally salvaged by being cut up in April that year.

It is estimated that more than 100,000 people flocked to Cleveleys to see this.

Here are the superb photographs I managed to obtain as the refloat was being attempted.

The second picture (left)is a poster for the Manxman vessel and crossing.

In retirement this ship had a floating ballroom and bar in Preston docks and I am sure some of you remember going there.

My third picture (above)is of a self locking coal cellar grid made in Preston.

We did not have a cellar or lobby, so our coalman had to carry the sacks through our living room and back kitchen before emptying them in our yard.