Lancashire nostalgia in 1985: Shocking murder; storm havoc; and PNE's plastic pitch

Here's a look at some of the stories that were making the headlines back in 1985:

Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 4:15 pm
Updated Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 4:16 pm
Frenchwood Junior School pupil Imraan Vohra was found strangled on Avenham Park
Frenchwood Junior School pupil Imraan Vohra was found strangled on Avenham Park

Hunt for sex killer as boy found murdered

The hunt for the sex killer of a nine-year-old boy has become a race against time.

Detectives investigating the murder of Imraan Vohra admitted: “There is no guarantee this man will not strike again.”

Morecambe promenade battered by waves in the storm

Police were desperately following up every lead as school head teachers warned children to take extra care on their way home.

The popular youngster was found strangled in undergrowth at Preston’s Avenham Park. He had been missing since leaving Frenchwood Junior School two days earlier.

He was naked except for a shirt. His trousers, underwear, shoes and jacket were found nearby. He had been sexually assaulted.

Sixty officers, led by Det Supt John Boyd, second in command of Lancashire CID, immediately called on the Asian community to help track down the murderer.

Labour leader Coun Harold Parker who sealed the deal for PNE's plastic pitch

He said: “Anybody who attacks a nine-year-old boy, sexually assaults him and strangles him, cannot be normal. You cannot get any worse than this crime.

“It cannot be ruled out that he will not strike again.”

Imraan, of James Street, Preston, was found by two members of the 150 Asian search party who scoured the town.

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Look back at a selection of pictures from 1985 here

Lancashire rocked by raging storms

Violent electrical storms brought chaos to the North West.

Hundreds of homes were flooded, others were left without power throughout the night and several homes were struck by lightning.

The storms raged for several hours and a NORWEB spokesman said the region had been lucky not to be faced with a major blackout.

The seaside town of Morecambe was badly hit - suffering its worst flooding for three years. Torrential rain and a high tide combined to bring devastation to many parts of the seafront.

At Longton, near Preston, the police station was hit by lightning, sending roof tiles and chimney masonry tumbling to the ground.

Flashes also struck a house in Dilworth Lane, Longridge, and a terraced home in Fishwick Road, Preston.

Preston Council get the ball rolling for PNE’s plastic pitch

A deal costing £480,000 which will give Preston North End a plastic pitch has been authorised by councillors.

But the club and town council is to organise a series of joint promotions to ensure that ratepayers get value for money.

It will mean use for the pitch all year round. The council will be paying £60,000 a year for the next eight years, which is expected to be the life span of the artificial surface.

The council’s policy committee, which approved the deal, will insist that community use of the facilities must be intensified and become far more of a reality than it has been since the club was paid £1/4 million for the stands and office buildings.

Both main parties gave their backing to the scheme but called for further reports on operating costs and ways to extend community use.

Preston North End directors will also be expected to produce, within a month, a programme of possible events which could be staged at Deepdale.

Labour leader Coun Harold Parker, who said it was now up to the club to go ahead with the project as soon as possible, commented: “This is bound to be seen by many people as the council propping up North End but I refute that.

“I am prepared to take this on as a community asset.”