Looking Back: Langley’s history from the week of July 21

Eighty Years Ago

July 16, 1936

• The school board’s chairman J.W. Berry and trustees E.J. Ball and W.V. Mufford approached Langley council with a proposal that would have resulted in the municipality owning school buses.

• Council announced that it wanted a local organization to enter a Langley float in the Vancouver Exhibition.

Seventy Years Ago

July 18, 1946

• The school board building committee – Grant Duckworth and Bill Brandow – came up with a plan they believed would help relieve the overcrowding expected in local classrooms in September. They wanted to build classrooms in school basements and rent space in community halls.

• Late blight was spreading rapidly through potato crops, due to high humidity caused by unusually heavy rainfall.

Sixty Years Ago

July 19, 1956

• A turkey vulture with a six-foot wingspann was shot down in Aldergrove after the bird swooped down and frightened three children.

• Municipal council considered buying a small hot-mix asphalt plant that was being offered for sale by the city of Vancouver.

Fifty Years Ago

July 21, 1966

• Langley was to constitute most of a new provincial electoral district in the next provincial election. Of 33 polling stations, 17 were in Langley City and Township, and eight each were in Surrey and Matsqui.

• Laminated beams to support the new $250,000 Safeway Store in Langley City were slung into place.

• A woman convicted of defrauding the welfare department of $1,500 was given a suspended sentence.

Forty Years Ago

July 15, 1976

• Police were investigating the murder of a Surrey girl who had attended a party in Matsqui. Her body was discovered in the Fraser River north of Aldergrove.

Thirty Years Ago

July 16, 1986

• Registered nurses held an information rally outside Langley Memorial Hospital on their lunch hour, to protest lagging contract negotiations.

• Mosquito spraying east of Fort Langley raised concerns about fish habitats.

• CN Rail agreed to pay Langley Township $23,100 to cover costs of dealing with a train derailment near Fort Langley in February.

Twenty Years Ago

July 17, 1996

• Photo-radar was set up in high-accident rate areas in Langley where speed had been identified as a factor. The results were “scary,” according to the RCMP officer in charge of the project. Of the 247 drivers passing one photo-radar installation, 82 per cent were speeding, and 90 exceeded the tolerance level and would be ticketed.

• An Aldergrove company narrowly missed being squeezed by the U.S. Helms-Burton Act which was designed to sanction any companies – Ameri­can or otherwise – doing business with Cuba. Yasmar Marketing was saved by the fact it used Cuban land that had formerly been owned by Americans.

• Police searched the home of a Langley man believed to have been responsible for circulating hate literature throughout the Lower Mainland. Docu­ments and computer data were seized, and Crown counsel was considering criminal charges.

• A Mushroom war was brewing, with two residents’ groups, Surrey, both Langleys, Langley MLA Lynn Stephens, and the GVRD threatening legal action against a mushroom composting operation which, Surrey lawyers contended, was “noxious” and a “tremendous threat to the emotional, if not the physical health of the community.”


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