7:30am Friday 2nd March 2012
The Watch Committee of the York City Council had had under consideration a report of their sub-committee on the question of extending the current fire alarm system in the city.
Having regard, however, to statistics which had been placed before them as to the means by which fires had been reported at the Fire Station during the previous three years, and to the arrangements recently made with several individuals having telephones in various districts to allow the same to be used to notify cases of outbreaks of fire, the committee proposed to give the existing arrangements a further trial before coming to a decision on the matter of extending the system or otherwise.
A drive was on to make youngsters discard their traditional favourites - a teddy bear or train set - for do-it-yourself toys and “think” games.
Scientific construction kits designed to build a host of robust working optical instruments, including telescopes, film projectors, microscopes and magnifiers were shown for the first time at the British Toy Fair in Brighton. To make use of knowledge gleaned in the biology class during leisure hours, another company had produced a microscope incorporating a fitting for viewing genuine pond life.
The traditional train set was also facing serious competition from the increasing number of motor-racing kits currently available. “It is very much harder to find something new to interest the little girls,” lamented a toy expert. But at the fair he had found three almost-human dolls, each one speaking 11 sentences at the pull of a chord.
The York department store Leak and Thorp had been taken over by London's top toy shop, Hamleys.
The Coney Street store, which employed 90 people, would close on March 28 and re-open in June as a toy and leisure store, said its managing director, Mr Frank Clarke. But he said as many staff as possible would be taken on by the new owners.
“We did not approach them,” he said. “They have been looking for prime sites in major towns and cities such as York and Newcastle.” Leak and Thorp had been bought by Sunderland-based Joplings in 1981, and closed for eight months for major refurbishment.
The store was originally founded as a drapery business in 1848 and moved to its current site in 1869. Mr Clarke said he was pleased such a prestigious firm as Hamleys was taking over the store and expressed his appreciation to his staff.
A spokesman for Hamleys in London said: “We will be creating a Hamleys experience which will be as much for adults as children, it offers people not just the opportunity to buy toys, but to try them out beforehand.”
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