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Thread: The 1970 riots

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    Senior Member danensis's Avatar
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    Default The 1970 riots

    Reading the Toxteth thread, and seeing the picture of Eddie Murphy, reminded me of the 1970 riots in Grafton Street area. As I remember the council had some sort of quota system going to ensure that new housing schemes had a racial mix, but this was considered discriminatory, so it was abolished, and of course all the families at the top of the housing list were black, so the folks who were already in the new houses got a bit upset.

    After two days the police turned up to remove the barricades, and Ed Murphy came out and said "Where the (expletive deleted) have you been for the last two days" and promptly got arrested for threatening behaviour.


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    www.liverbuild.co.uk chrismarsden's Avatar
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    I didn't know about this.
    Living in Lodge Lane during the 70's and 80's I thought I might of heard about it.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chrismarsden View Post
    I didn't know about this.
    Living in Lodge Lane during the 70's and 80's I thought I might of heard about it.
    St Nathanial St around Myrtle Gardens not Grafton ST. 1972. It went on for number of nights. All the new houses with the blacks in had all the windows smashed and the kids locked horns. Then the blacks smashed the windows of the whites.

    Taken just after:
    http://www.britishpathe.com/images//...0/00086718.WMV
    Last edited by Waterways; 03-05-2008 at 11:43 AM.
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    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    Yes, I saw some of it !

    I was in a house on the Falkner estate when the front window was smashed we had to sit with the lights out until the rabble went away.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lindylou View Post
    Yes, I saw some of it !

    I was in a house on the Falkner estate when the front window was smashed we had to sit with the lights out until the rabble went away.
    It kicked off on the Friday night. On the Saturday morning I went there to commission some new heating systems in the new houses. There was bricks and large objects all over the roads and windows smashed everywhere. The police couldn't handle it the first night and beat it for a while. Whole families were scared stiff and emotions were very high.

    The Liverpool Echo never reported it. Only when the nationals did, the Echo did.
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    Chris48
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    If these are the same riots, they were known as "The Berkeley Street Riots" within the Police.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris48 View Post
    If these are the same riots, they were known as "The Berkeley Street Riots" within the Police.
    They were a way from Berkley St, so probably a different skirmish.
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    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    Don't know about Berkley st having any connection to it.

    it was to do with the re housing of L8 residents as already stated.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by danensis View Post
    Reading the Toxteth thread, and seeing the picture of Eddie Murphy, reminded me of the 1970 riots in Grafton Street area. As I remember the council had some sort of quota system going to ensure that new housing schemes had a racial mix, but this was considered discriminatory, so it was abolished, and of course all the families at the top of the housing list were black, so the folks who were already in the new houses got a bit upset.
    At that point, the housing was based on need. Those in the worst housing were top of the list. The blacks, especially the newer immigrants, were in the worst. Many of them had only just come into the country and were given new houses with gardens and full heating/ventilation systems. The local indigenous whites saw this a favouritism as they were still living in poor housing. Many long established black families didn't like new immigrants been given brand new homes either. Taunting occurred one night and it flipped over.

    The policy was obviously wrong and clearly insensitive. Local white families in poor housing, whose linage was all British and the father and grandfathers probably fought in the war, were seeing people of a different, race, culture and colour who had contributed little to the society, coming in and been given brand new homes. Many of these people had been waiting well over 20 years to be rehoused and would naturally be not be too pleased at what they saw.

    St Nathanial St has now been demolished.
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    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waterways View Post
    At that point, the housing was based on need. Those in the worst housing were top of the list. The blacks, especially the newer immigrants, were in the worst. Many of them had only just come into the country and were given new houses with gardens and full heating/ventilation systems. The local indigenous whites saw this a favouritism as they were still living in poor housing. Many long established black families didn't like new immigrants been given brand new homes either. Taunting occurred one night and it flipped over.

    The policy was obviously wrong and clearly insensitive. Local white families in poor housing, whose linage was all British and the father and grandfathers probably fought in the war, were seeing people of a different, race, culture and colour who had contributed little to the society, coming in and been given brand new homes. Many of these people had been waiting well over 20 years to be rehoused and would naturally be not be too pleased at what they saw.

    St Nathanial St has now been demolished.
    and it must have slipped their notice that there were many black men and women who faught and died in the war too.

    although this is a Birmingham site - the same applies to Liverpool black people who took part in the war:
    http://www.birmingham.gov.uk/printer...&MENU_ID=10596

    http://www.birmingham.gov.uk/printer...&MENU_ID=10277

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lindylou View Post
    and it must have slipped their notice that there were many balck men and women who faught and died in the war too.
    I am fully aware of WW2 - is it my pet subject. In working class Liverpool most families had someone who fought in WW2 (few never), with many having people who died in action and family members who died in German air raids on the city.

    I am attempting to put a reason why the violence occurred. I said "people of a different, race, culture and colour who had contributed little to the society, coming in and been given brand new homes." Few of these raw Caribbean and African immigrants had fought in WW2. .....and had contributed little to nothing towards this society. Not their fault - just the way it was. You can't blame them - they must have thought they had gone to heaven.

    As regards to the local whites.."Many of these people had been waiting well over 20 years to be rehoused and would naturally be not be too pleased at what they saw.
    In the early 1970s WW2 was not that far back, and still fresh in the mind. If I had fought in WW2, had a family, and had been waiting over 20 years to be rehoused, and fresh people in from the Caribbean and Africa, contributing little or nothing to the UK, were given brand new houses over the road from me...I would not be too pleased to say the least. I would wonder why I put my life on the line at all. As I said, many second and third generation Liverpool blacks (Liverpudlians) didn't like what they saw too, as they were being pushed to the back of the line as well.

    The policy was very wrong and insensitive indeed, and the violent backlash proved that.
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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lindylou View Post
    Don't know about Berkley st having any connection to it.

    it was to do with the re housing of L8 residents as already stated.
    Berkley St was probably the late 1950s early 1960s. The white boys from Park Rd and around Sussex Gardens would lock horns with the new Caribbean immigrants who lived around Berkley St/Upper Parli/Arnold St. Some of it was quite violent indeed (chains being used). As a kid I witnessed a bit of it as the blacks did one of their occasional reprisal sorties into the white part where we lived. They soon stopped it after being hammered.

    Because of this, the black population spread north up Upper Parliament St, not south, leaving Park Rd/Mill St 100% white. Then they hit white Lodge Lane and in 1972 that erupted too.
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    Hi all

    I am speaking out of ignorance here but were there riots in Toxteth in early 1970's in addition to the famous riots in Toxteth in 1981 or is there some confusion here? Thanks, someone, for clarifying.

    Chris
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    John(Zappa)
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    With the Toxteth riots there was "Mini" riots. The shops inBroadway Norris green took a little battering.Am sure there was a few other small ones about.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisGeorge View Post
    Hi all

    I am speaking out of ignorance here but were there riots in Toxteth in early 1970's in addition to the famous riots in Toxteth in 1981 or is there some confusion here? Thanks, someone, for clarifying.

    Chris
    To me a riot is anti-establishment thing. The Toxteth riot in 1981 was one - 100% anti police. Nothing racial in it, as most of the rioters were white.
    The 1972 "riot" was racial between mainly ethnic groups - against a housing policy if anything.
    The late 1950/early 60s Berkley St riots were pure racial. Just anti black, and the blacks anti white.
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    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John(Zappa) View Post
    With the Toxteth riots there was "Mini" riots. The shops inBroadway Norris green took a little battering.Am sure there was a few other small ones about.
    yes, we had discussed it a long time back in another thread somewhere. The riots spread to other areas like Norris green and Cantril Farm - I've forgotten all the other areas involved, but apart form Liverpool there were riots spreading throughout other places in UK.

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    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waterways View Post
    Berkley St was probably the late 1950s early 1960s. The white boys from Park Rd and around Sussex Gardens would lock horns with the new Caribbean immigrants who lived around Berkley St/Upper Parli/Arnold St. Some of it was quite violent indeed (chains being used). As a kid I witnessed a bit of it as the blacks did one of their occasional reprisal sorties into the white part where we lived. They soon stopped it after being hammered.

    Because of this, the black population spread north up Upper Parliament St, not south, leaving Park Rd/Mill St 100% white. Then they hit white Lodge Lane and in 1972 that erupted too.
    Yes, I know about how it was. I have had a lot of contact with the Liverpool born black population and I have studied their history.

    The local white thugs of the day - the equvilent of todays hoodie thugs - gave black people a hard time. The case of Charles Wooten (spelling) being terrorised and chased to his death is a well known example. There were many more similar stories and I have been told them first hand by the older generation who witnessed them.

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lindylou View Post
    Yes, I know about how it was. I have had a lot of contact with the Liverpool born black population and I have studied their history.

    The local white thugs of the day - the equvilent of todays hoodie thugs - gave black people a hard time. The case of Charles Wooten (spelling) being terrorised and chased to his death is a well known example. There were many more similar stories and I have been told them first hand by the older generation who witnessed them.
    Some of the black kids gave back what they got. Once it was clear the black people were staying, there was a status quo - it was accepted they were there and they had their territory and stayed within it.

    After, it was when the blacks started up that trouble came about. Or they moved into a white area in groups - that was asking for trouble, as the white kids would muster in a flash.

    It was strange in that the long term 2nd/3rd generation of established black people were never seen as a threat - they were predominantly mixed race and initially lived around Liverpool 1 and the lower part of Upper Parliament St. These knew the rules, and what you do and what you don't do, where you go and where you don't go. The raw black Caribbean and African immigrants would do things the established black community would not and react far too easily, not knowing the grounds rules of how to survive.
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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lindylou View Post
    yes, we had discussed it a long time back in another thread somewhere. The riots spread to other areas like Norris green and Cantril Farm - I've forgotten all the other areas involved, but apart form Liverpool there were riots spreading throughout other places in UK.
    All major cities except Newcastle - maybe they were too dumb to riot Even High Wycombe in Bucks erupted when the blacks and Asians had a go at each other and the police.

    The most severe was Liverpool. The level of the ferocity and the length of the fighting went on and on for days on end. The level of violence in Liverpool shocked the government so much they appointed Hesseltine the unofficial Minister for Liverpool.

    The media was putting across it was a black against police affair to prevent predominantly white cities from erupting. The fact was in Liverpool, only 25% of those involved were black or coloured. The city, and the deprived inner city areas had had enough.

    Many of the kids in other districts would go to Toxteth to "help out".
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    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Waterways View Post
    Some of the black kids gave back what they got. Once it was clear the black people were staying, there was a status quo - it was accepted they were there and they had their territory and stayed within it.

    After, it was when the blacks started up that trouble came about. Or they moved into a white area in groups - that was asking for trouble, as the white kids would muster in a flash.

    It was strange in that the long term 2nd/3rd generation of established black people were never seen as a threat - they were predominantly mixed race and initially lived around Liverpool 1 and the lower part of Upper Parliament St. These knew the rules, and what you do and what you don't do, where you go and where you don't go. The raw black Caribbean and African immigrants would do things the established black community would not and react far too easily, not knowing the grounds rules of how to survive.
    I can see exactly the same thing happening today in the worst parts of Anfield ( it must be going on in other districts too) ie; parts of Anfield which have deteriorated into almost no go areas due to the ant-socials taking over.

    There are foreign people being moved into the district, moving into the houses from which people have left to escape from the anti-social elements. The foreign people , knowing no better about the bad areas, are like lambs to slaughter. They blindly walk into the trap and are subsequently hounded by the local neanderthals. I see it all the time.
    I personally know of 2 Foreign families living very close to me who have been verbally and physically attacked, their houses targetted. One family live in the back part of their house because it is too dangerous to live in the front rooms. Their windows have even been shot at.

    Disgusting.

    No one should have to live like that in this day and age.

    As I walk around the district I frequently see foreigners being shown around houses by offcials, obviously with a view to moving them in. I think to myself, 'poor suckers don't know what they are letting them selves in for'

    this is how our district evolved:

    First it was a desirable area where it was a nice place to bring up familes. Some of the larger houses belonging to more proffessional, affluent people.
    The smaller terraces had nice families too.

    Next, the area became 'flat land' - the bigger houses rented out into flats after the more affluent had moved on. This was the start of the general neglect of the properties.

    Then came the anti-socials and problem families evicted from where ever they came. They trashed the houses and sullied the area and moved on to trash somewhere else.

    Now come the guillable immigrants who don't know the past problems and move in, only to discover hostility and torment.


    It's a shame. The housing associations, or the powers that be have a lot to answer to.

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    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    Maybe all us good citizens should rise up and riot against the anti-socials kick their sorry butts into space !

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lindylou View Post
    Maybe all us good citizens should rise up and riot against the anti-socials kick their sorry butts into space !
    I'm with you there.
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    i was born in 1967 in harroby st off granby st L8 i am the second born my older brother died in a road accident in 1971.my Grandad was also born in the granby st area and was actually bombed out in the second world war right next to granby st school where he attended school as did my. mum her brother and also myself, to get to the point we wher one of an all white family to be rehoused in one of these nice new houses with c/h and a bathroom even a inside wc,my mum along withmyself where rehoused to e new estate off beaumont L8 and my nan and Grandad went to the faulkner estate just around the corner from the well known red duster, we where and always will be a multi racial community,the new houses where not just for immigrants but for the poor and needy,my nan still tells me some horrific stories of the pain and suffering our oversea friends endured and lets face it wasnt it our white ancestors the men who sailed the sea,s and claimed these foriegn lands as their own, i am privaleged to have grown around so many cultures and wouldnt have it any other way, yet unfortunatly we will always have haters and nazi,s. forgive them 4 they know not what they do

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    Senior Member lindylou's Avatar
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    Good post Shellylpool

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    Senior Member robbo176's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shellylpool View Post
    i was born in 1967 in harroby st off granby st L8 i am the second born my older brother died in a road accident in 1971.my Grandad was also born in the granby st area and was actually bombed out in the second world war right next to granby st school where he attended school as did my. mum her brother and also myself, to get to the point we wher one of an all white family to be rehoused in one of these nice new houses with c/h and a bathroom even a inside wc,my mum along withmyself where rehoused to e new estate off beaumont L8 and my nan and Grandad went to the faulkner estate just around the corner from the well known red duster, we where and always will be a multi racial community,the new houses where not just for immigrants but for the poor and needy,my nan still tells me some horrific stories of the pain and suffering our oversea friends endured and lets face it wasnt it our white ancestors the men who sailed the sea,s and claimed these foriegn lands as their own, i am privaleged to have grown around so many cultures and wouldnt have it any other way, yet unfortunatly we will always have haters and nazi,s. forgive them 4 they know not what they do

    Hiya shellylpool,
    a warm welcome to Yo Liverpool

    I used to live at Beaumont Grove,where about did you live?

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    Senior Member Davec's Avatar
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    Heart warming post Shellylpool, don't ever change,welldone.

    Dave.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shellylpool View Post
    i am privaleged to have grown around so many cultures and wouldnt have it any other way
    I agree shellylpool. I grew up on Huskisson St and went to Granby St school. It was a very mixed area but as a kid always felt safer there than in the next door 'whiter' areas. Also think the rehousing mix in the new houses was more complicated. I had black Liverpudlian friends housed in Faulkner estate. There were a lot of housing clearances going on at that time. Some to clear slums but others so that the University, which owned a lot of the land, could expand. I think the problems might have been between fresh re-housings in new houses and people who had been re-housed years before in the older tenement blocks that were now becoming run down.

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    Default Anti Jewish Riots in Lodge Lane

    Recently, I learnt about the anti Jewish Riots in the Lodge Lane area of Toxteth in about 1947. Anyone have any more info?

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    Senior Member Waterways's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by taffy View Post
    Recently, I learnt about the anti Jewish Riots in the Lodge Lane area of Toxteth in about 1947. Anyone have any more info?
    When the sergeants were murdered by the Israeli Stern Gang in the Orange Groves in Palestine.

    Freemans in Wavertree Rd was attacked too.
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    I remember this incident quite vividly. In those days there were quite a few gangs about in South Liverpool. The incident that is referred to was brought about by gangs being asked to go to a fight round parly without being given the ins and outs of the situation. The situation was obviously being manipulated. I went there realized what it was about and advised my mates to come away. A few months later my Mother had her windows put in.
    Oh as I was young and easy in the mercy of his means,
    Time held me green and dying
    Though I sang in my chains like the sea.

    Dylan Thomas

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