Here’s what’s happening around the world this week:-
- December 18th – Leonid Brezhnev, the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union and the U.S.S.R.’s de facto leader, was awarded the nation’s highest honor, Hero of the Soviet Union, the day before his sixtieth birthday.
- December 19th – The United Nations adopted the Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies, more commonly known as the Outer Space Treaty.
- December 19th – Duke Ellington began recording his album, The Far East Suite, in New York City. The nine tracks on the album were all compositions by Ellington and Billy Strayhorn (except for one by Ellington alone).
- December 20th – Harold Wilson withdrew all his previous offers to the Rhodesian government, and announced that he would agree to independence only after the founding of a Black majority government.
- December 22nd – On the eve of the United Kingdom’s trade ban with Rhodesia, Prime Minister Ian Smith declared that Rhodesia had become an independent republic by operation of the UN Security Counil’s vote for sanctions. “We are ipso facto in a position that we are no longer under the control of Britain,” Smith told reporters, “and, in the circumstances, I would say we are no longer members of the British Commonwealth; if that is the position, I do not know what we have become, except a republic.”
- December 23rd – Ready Steady Go!, the pioneering British pop music show on Britain’s ITV network, was broadcast for the last time, after making its debut on August 9, 1963. Appearing as the last act was The Who, and the final show was subtitled “Ready Steady Gone!”.
- December 23rd – The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly, directed by Sergio Leone of Italy and the highest grossing of the “Spaghetti Western” films, made its US debut.
- December 24th – Died: Frank Mitchell, 37, British armed robber known as “The Mad Axeman”, twelve days after escaping Dartmoor Prison. The Kray twins, who had masterminded his escape, ordered his murder after quickly becoming tired of their friend.
But here’s what’s occupying Peggy’s world:-
Sunday 18th December 1966
To the Morgans for drinks.
Had quite a pleasant hour at the Morgans while the children were at Sunday School. Had a lazy sort of afternoon – made some vol-au-vents for tea. Children late-ish going to bed.
Monday 19th December 1966
Cyril – day off.
Supposed to go to Cherry B tonight for a drink.
Worked until 2pm – and have done the bills at home this evening. Went to Cherry Burton (Mr. & Mrs. Murray’s house) – inclined to be stiff and formal! Cards and presents arriving! Cyril has had a tiring day.
Tuesday 20th December 1966
The week is dragging for Philip – he’s looking pale and spotty too – can’t get to sleep for excitement! Still busy at work – at least I am! No one else seems to have much to do.
Wednesday 21st December 1966
Last day school.
Still working hard – about the only one who is!!! Went back this afternoon and have done some of the washing this evening – and cleaned the brass. Cyril has been blowing up balloons!
Thursday 22nd December 1966
Children quite good when I left them – in fact they were a bit fed up with my ringing to see if they were okay!! Busy washing this afternoon. Joan rang. She says that Pa is having Christmas Day with Ted and Gill.
Friday 23rd December 1966
Worked until 12:30.
Mr. Chilcott came in worrying me with accounts. Mr Murray gave us all a fiver for Christmas – but no drinks in the office!! Been cooking and cleaning this evening – the tongue, gammon and frozen special!!
Saturday 24th December 1966
Christmas Eve – and a very wet and nasty one. We were in Leatherhead before the shops opened! Just for a few things – then picked up our ordered goods in village and home. Pottering and baking during afternoon. Had a late night – filling stockings and drinking with neighbours. Went to church at 5pm. Children went off to sleep very quickly.