News flashback: August 1986 – MRSA hits Homerton Hospital

Hackney Gazette, August 1, 1986

Hackney Gazette, August 1, 1986 - Credit: Archant

Every week the Gazette will delve into its archives to see what was happening in Hackney 30 and 60 years ago.

30 years ago:

The MRSA “superbug” hit Homerton University Hospital just weeks after it opened. Tests had revealed 40 cases of the illness, which is highly resistant to antibiotics.

Doctors were “agonised, outraged and upset” that the infection had been allowed to spread to the hospital.

Liberal Shoreditch councillors were calling for independence from Hackney Council because they claimed the borough’s Labour bosses were “unfit to rule”.

The call was prompted by the Arden Inquiry, which revealed widespread corruption at the town hall.

But Labour’s planning chair Cllr Brynley Heaven said the Liberals were simply trying to get attention.

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60 years ago:

Devastating 90mph storms hit Hackney, damaging shop fronts and breaking chimneys.

The storm saw one casualty as masonary was blown off a roof, injuring Ridley Road public toilet attendant Frederick Smythe.

As the Cold War raged, Hackney-based “Peace News” – run by Stoke Newington councillor Hugh Brock from his Blackstock Road office – managed to get a call put through to Moscow and broke the story that top Soviet scientist Peter Kapitsa had refused to work on developing the hydrogen bomb.

Shoreditch Council banned swimming goggles in public baths after an increase in injuries. Goggles were frequently made of glass.