As a kid in the mid - sixties; I'm talking 5 to 6 years of age, I could walk down to the news agents in London's East End of Poplar. The news agent was by the crossroads of East India Dock Road/ Comercial Road and Burdett Road/West India Dock Road. It was the Limehouse area and I lived in St Annes Street. I always brought the various picture card sets with the tanner a day that I got from my Dad. A tanner was six pence in old money (two and a half pence in today's money decimalised money.) For this I could buy two packs that cost threepence a pack (old money.) Two threepence bits being a tanner.
I liked sweets but I liked picture cards better. There were all sorts of sets in the 60s and the U.S. must have earned a few bob in exports to the UK back then because the various American TV shows were always popular and many shows sold picture card sets. So too did the British TV show. It was a time when Americans and Brits were not ashamed of who they were.
Then there was other picture card set. The gory collections like the U.S. civil war series. They were on sale for a number of years before they were banned..As I kid, I was gobsmacked by the powers that be. For why would they do such a thing to little kids who loved to collect these fabulous kiddie cards. I thought they were loaded with action shots and we all loved the American West history.
Of course, today, I can understand the reasons for banning such cards. They are explicitly gory and to sell them to little kids is, of course, is a huge NO, NO.
I know it is wrong but I have a compelling fascination to these violent and gory picture cards because they are a link to the innocence of my child hood memories, when the world was a place of black and white. Perhaps these gory cards lent a wicked hint that I lived in a world where evil could still exist. Perhaps a kid of 5 or 6 years should not be given shut views.
I still have a few looked in boxes. I can't bare to part with them because they are a link to the Retro Brit past. A past that I like to nostalgically bath in every now and then.