Sixty years ago in ‘Greytown Gazette’

2017-09-27 06:00

IT looks like the laws of libel were disregarded some 60 years ago with signed letters to the editor being published in the Greytown Gazette of 1957 containing some very rude comments about individuals.
An ex-councillor commenting on adverse comment on council’s finances queried the “unsolicited attack on our town hall officials and a very blatant suggestion that they were incompetent and their integrity was in question” and suggested a written apology. 
The individual being targeted replied in the next issue, “I very much regret that the writer has seen fit to spread his miasma of verbosity to lure me into an unnecessary defence.”
His vicious attack was unwarranted and this writer felt that the town office officials were intelligent enough to understand his remarks.

Another “strange” letter — from the provincial secretary of Natal anti-Republican league to “resist relentlessly” all measures taken by the government of that time to become a republic and that Natal should have a separate referendum.

At a council meeting a resident, who had built three houses on his property without building plans, was given three months to demolish the buildings.

News items were fairly limited, apart from town council-detailed reports, sports reports and the movements of residents in and out of town as well as visitors.
There were lengthy obituaries and detailed wedding reports describing in detail the fabrics, flowers and guests.
The Greytown Country Club, which had been started in 1956, laid the foundations of its new clubhouse — this, during the year, hosted cabarets, dances and a children’s carnival­.
There were regular cocktail parties held by the UMR and other public entities. The Umvoti  Pony Club, Umvoti Home Industries and Umvoti Garden Club were active as well as the Umvoti Agricultural Society and the Rietvlei society.

There was plenty of sport on the go — bowls, tennis, cricket, rugby and a boat club operating out of Lake Merthley. Bowls and tennis were played in Muden and a report of a marathon between Greytown and Muden, which had only three runners as the Asian flu epidemic, which had affected hundreds in the area, took its toll of runners.
The three completed the run in 1:55.

At the local cinema, Magnet Theatre­, shows were at 8 pm and Saturday matinee at 2.30 pm.
There were usually two movies a week — Tuesdays and Wednesdays and Fridays and Saturdays.

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