1985 Glasgow Gas Explosion

Building progress with the carpenter and electrician working and me screwing down floorboards after a cold and frosty night as we hear of the aftermath of the Glasgow gas explosion and of the UDR captain murdered by the IRA today

Another very poor night. This time it was worries over the central heating. The recent ‘roof-sliding’ sounds that I thought I had heard, turned out to be the boiling of the water in the radiators due to the boiler thermostat being set too high. Several times out in the rubble and cold to adjust it and several times more to the toilet, induced by the cold. A very frosty night and cold day to follow, with much of the snowy/frost staying around all day. Quickly washed and dressed for breakfast on our Ercol dining table and chairs in the breakfast room, which was a treat. A bit cold, however, as we only have the one radiator working there, with the Myson kick-space heater still to be commissioned. Then across to Daniel’s new bedroom to spend an hour putting more 1½” No.8 c/sunk screws into his floorboards, as a continuation of the war against creaks. Out, after, to the doves, who now feed regularly from the one dove table and to scrutinise the work of the builders. Today the carpenter was working again and put in the ironing room door, finished paneling in plasterboard, fitted the two teak-finish fire stop doors and then put in the door frame for the new utility room. Mr Evans then built up the block utility room wall, ready for the plasterers on Monday. His son, Richard, concreted in the ramp path at the front for connecting the walkway, in the form of a square past the front patio.

The electrician also returned unexpectedly (the pig farm equipment had not arrived) and connected up the breakfast room light, the microwave oven and a lot more house electrics as well. The builders also took delivery of the Cristal Bloomsbury tiles for the new bathroom and shower room and they cleared out the new dining room for me to carpet. In late morning, Diana and I went into St Neots to visit the Carpet Scene to pick up our tiles and to Brittains to progress our curtains. The married blonde in the carpet shop was in an attractive dither - she had put my deposit payment through Access instead of VISA – and she looked much nicer today, smelling of musk perfume and with her hair just done. I pulled her leg a bit before we set off. Then to the Cross Keys pub for a ploughman’s lunch and to the hardware shops, whilst Di got some groceries. Home rather late, with Diana cross and ill-tempered, but Joan quite happy when we arrived. The afternoon finishing Daniel’s floorboards, trimming the hall/stairs landing carpet in the old house to match the new door openings, and the evening cleaning out the new rooms and laying underlay for Brittains in the morning. Finally, shattered, I made my way up to bed after a shower and hence to watch the news. News tonight of the aftermath of the Glasgow explosion, where a tenement of 4 apartments was demolished after a gas leak. It seems that there was a fractured gas main under the frozen ground; that there had been a strong small of gas for days, but nobody had thought to tell the gas board. Bradford headmaster, Gordon Honeyford, has decided to seek early retirement after a campaign waged for his removal, after accusations of racism. A UDR Captain has been murdered by the IRA today, by a booby-trapped bomb in his car. Dr David Owen tonight expressed his desire for a referendum on proportional representation to commit future administrations to retain the system if introduced. Liverpool Council have borrowed £30M, repayable over 7 years and accepted their new budget to stave off a crisis, but all parties condemn their action as mortgaging the future. We also ordered our new swimming pool in the meeting with ELM today.