THROUGH THE ARCHIVES: From the News Letter of December 1950
There were high hopes in December 1950 that Islandmagee in Co Antrim would soon, literally, see the light with the extension of electricity to the area by March 1951.
The news came at a meeting in Kilcoan Primary School, Islandmagee, under the auspices of the Islandmagee branch of the Ulster Farmers’ Union, at which the area manager for the Northern Ireland Electricity Board, reported that the electrification of Islandmagee was to be “proceeded with immediately”.
He said that: “If everything went according to plan, the work will be completed by March, 1951.”
Other speakers included Mr W W B Topping, KC, MP, Mr G E Dunlop, Ulster Transport Authority, the Reverend H H McClure, chairman of the local electricity committee, and Mr J D Templeton, the chairman of the local branch of the Ulster Farmers’ Union.
It was also decided that the group should communicate with the manager of the British Portland Cement Company at Magheramorne regarding “an alleged nuisance caused by cement dust at Islandmagee from the company’s works”.
Deep snow on Ulster hill roads
Heavy snow in parts of Northern Ireland had made some roads almost impassable this week in 1950 reported the News Letter.
Meanwhile, in other areas a thin layer of ice made the surface “very dangerous”.
In Counties Fermanagh and Londonderry main roads had coverings of up to six inches of snow.
The road from Fivemiletown to Enniskillen via Tempo could only be negotiated with difficulty. In the Omagh district, “going was slow and difficult along the main roads”.
High winds had caused snow drifts of more than two feet on the following roads, the Genshane Pass, Maghera and the road connecting Limavady, Mascosquin and Coleraine.
The News Letter reported: “Motorists were strongly advised to avoid these mountainous routes and to carry chains if they had to use them.”
The paper added: “Showers of rain, sleet or snow, which may become more continuous later, are forecast for Ulster today. There will be strong north-west winds, which may reach gale force before moderating. It will remain cold.”