A hundred years ago today, with the First World War dragging on and its impact leading to dire shortages across the country, Leeds determined to adopt a rationing system for tea, butter and margarine, bacon, ham, lard and meat in general.
The scheme was expected to take three weeks to set up, with ration cards issued for each household. The scheme was also said to apply to nearby localities bordering the city, including Pudsey and Morley.
The stories appeared in the Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer in January, 1918.
The situation came to a head after reports of goods being hoarded in warehouses in Leeds and subsequent reports of threats by some draymen to raid these premises. The Leeds Food Control Committee, which was charged with implementing the rationing programme, said meet supply was down by half and supplies of butter were down by 75 per cent.
In other news, parts of Yorkshire were in flood after the Rivers Rye and Derwent broke their banks, with the scene at the How Bridge junction of the rivers resembling a great lake. Meanwhile, farmers from the low country who attended Pickering market had to drive through a foot of water, with large numbers of ducks said to be following the floodwaters inland.
Finally, a report of an inquest into the death of a 68-year-old man, James Croft, of Cygnet Street, York, who died after lighting a candle, which subsequently set fire to his night clothes, eventually resulting in his death.
The inquest, held in York, heard he had been a member of the Volunteer Force for 30 years, reaching the rank of sergeant major and was for many years a stretcher bearer for St John ambulance. He was employed by Terry’s confectioners continually for 58 years. He died on the morning of January 14.