Many strange things happened in 1980.
Sixty-five countries boycotted the Summer Olympics in protest at the Soviet war in Afghanistan, St Winifred’s School Choir made it to number one with their song There’s No One Quite Like Grandma, and a phone box in Bognor fell over.
No one knows how the box ended up on its side in West Street, although a wag of the time guessed it had become unbalanced by the weight of the 5p pieces which were needed to make a call.
The charge had recently gone up from 2p to 5p – some people clearly did not take the change well!
For any youngsters out there wondering who ‘Buzby’ was, well, he was a large yellow bird – though for some reason he later changed his colour to orange – who was part of a marketing campaign launched in 1976 by Post Office Telecommunications – later known as BT.
Buzby was voiced by Bernard Cribbens and his catchphrase was: “Make someone happy with a phone call.”
The fall of the phone box wasn’t the only odd thing to happen in the area.
In Washington Street, residents were up in arms at the building of what they dubbed The Berlin Wall in their street.
The wall was part of an extension to another property which the locals did not like.
Over at Williams’ Pharmacy, in London Road, a £3,000 hoard of treasure was found at the bottom of a bag of returned medicine bottles.
And finally, in Chichester a German man was fined £200 for bringing his daughter’s pet guinea pig on holiday with them.
Apparently he didn’t know the anti-rabies laws applied to animals other than cats and dogs.
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