I seem to have been extremely lucky over the last couple of weeks when it comes to finding vintage Ladybird books in charity shops – and all at great prices too. It certainly makes up for the drought that I've had over the last few months and swells my collection nicely.
The story of Newspapers is the sort of Ladybird book that I really love. It really shows its age, yet I love that glimpse into this frozen period of time. Published in 1969 this book explains how newspapers came into being and also how they were produced and run at the time of publication.
It's fair to say that the newspaper industry has changed a crazy amount since this book was published. Broadsheet newspapers have slimmed down, internet based news has changed how newspapers work, there are daily freebie papers available across the country and then there's all the more recent news surrounding the Leveson Inquiry and the closure of the News of the World. Whilst some things have stayed the same, it's fair to say that you could easily fill another Ladybird book with changes that have taken place.
All the illustrations in this book are done by Ron Embleton and they are beautifully detailed and have a great 60s look about them. They all seem to really easily take the reader back to that time.
The one above showing the Evening Standard being delivered to a London street corner really does just speak volumes to me of London rush hour back then.
As was the case with many Ladybird books from this era there is a clear reflection of what the role of women at the time was. This meeting if newspaper management deciding what should be going in the next morning's edition features just one woman and it's pretty clear that she's there as a secretary, rather than an editor.
There's one thing that's a bit strange with this particular Ladybird book though – you don't see many children's books with a copy of Playboy on the front cover, but if you look closely below that's exactly what there is!
Now, I'm told (not being an expert on this subject myself!) that Playboy was a different kind of publication in those days – possibly more like GQ today – but I can't say that that stops me being surprised though.
If you have a collection of old Ladybird books then please feel free to join in with Ladybird Tuesday. There are no formal rules to follow, just leave a link to any post you write in the comments below and if you're feeling kind link back to my Ladybird Tuesday category here on Being Mrs C. Thanks!