Tuesday September 15th 1964. Just another day. Prime Minister Alec Douglas-Home officially launched the General Election campaign. Stockport County fans were depressed at their team losing 1-0 at Edgeley Park the previous evening. Television had a documentary about the gun-toting Americans, whilst Futurama showed on ITV. And a new newspaper hit the stands.
On that day in 1964, The Sun was launched. A new daily broadsheet, independent, politically free and 24 pages long.
I’ll be running a series of articles over the next few weeks looking at that first issue of The Sun and the world as it was seen through the eyes of those first Sun journalists and readers.
The 1964 Sun speaks of how life for people in Britain has changed
Our children are better educated. The mental horizon of their parents has widened through travel, higher living standards and T.V. Five million Britons now holiday abroad every year. Half our population is under 35 years of age.
Steaks, cars, houses, refrigerators, washing machines are no longer the prerogative of the “upper crust” but the right of all. People believe, and the Sun believes with them, that the division of people into social classes is happily out of date.
And the Sun is in no doubt that the changing lives of women is particularly important
Women are no longer trapped between four walls. They are released from household drudgery by labour-saving devices, gadgets and intelligent home-planning. In 1938 only one married woman in ten went to work: the figure is now ONE in THREE-and will soon increase.
The emancipation of their minds has been accelerated at a fascinating pace by wider human contacts outside the home.
Women are the pacesetters now and there is no country with a higher sense of fashion, coiffure and chic. The Sun will cater for their needs in every issue.
There is another community the Sun is keen to cater to
Above all, the Sun is a gay – as well as informative – paper for those with a zest for living
Coming in future weeks: the office girls kidnapped and ordered to rob a bank, the BBC comes out against Christmas cards, the new deadly gun given to British troops fighting in Indonesia, the Sun’s equal pay for women campaign, Noel Whitcomb’s Gay column, the Heaton Norris housewife training to be a bullfighter, the Liberal Party’s hope to hold the balance of power after the General Election, University chaos as students in clearing wait to hear if they’ve got a place, the premier of Goldfinger, everything you wanted to know about the Pill, Clement Freud’s sporting column, the column that makes racing gay, how Liverpool got on against Reykjavik in the European Cup and more besides.