On 23rd January 1954 my parents Raymond John Davis (aged 25) and Joan Mary Purcell (aged 21) married at Raynes Park Parish Church. My father had recently left the army (Royal Artillery) and was nine months from joining the Metropolitan Police Force.
The average house price back then was £1,970. Today it is almost exactly 100 times that at £196,999. It’s hard to find accurate records of other prices from 62 years ago but the general consensus on the Internet is that petrol was four shillings a gallon (that’s 20p to those who can’t remember old money!) Even at today’s low of just under £1 a litre, that’s about a 22 fold increase.
I can’t help wondering what the people posing for this photograph would have said if someone had told them that 62 years later many of us would be carrying devices, only slightly bigger and heavier than a packet of 20 cigarettes, that could access pretty much all the knowledge that humans have amassed. If they weren’t shocked enough by that surely they be astounded to hear that we use these things to argue with strangers and circulate pictures of our pets (mostly cats!)