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A record 49 weddings took place in Manchester over the weekend in a "Marry-Before-Easter" boom. It appears that enterprising bridegrooms are hurrying to marry before April the 5th in order to claim a tax rebate on the marriage allowance for the current year.

Two attacks on women took place in Wythenshawe on Sunday night. The attacks were carried out by masked men. In response, the police have instigated special night patrols.

Wythenshawe residents are also worried about proposed bus fare increases. The cost of a trip into Manchester may rise to 1s. Proposed rate increases may cause further financial difficulties for people on the estate.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is to start a new air service between Amsterdam, Manchester and Dublin. And in Bolton, the last tram ran tonight. Due to the fuel crisis, the illuminated tramcar was powered by battery.

On Wednesday a food wholesaler was fined 100 and his wife 50 for overcharging on apples and potatoes. The couple had been caught in the act by food enforcement officers.

Plans for a Garden of Remembrance in St Peters Square have been approved. Currently there is only a monument on the site, with a small patch of grass. A three foot high wall and seats are to be built.

Rural Mobberley may become the site of a new overspill town. Borings are currently being made to discover if there is salt subsidence. If the ground proves to be suitable for building, work will go ahead on the new development either in the Mobberley or Knutsford area.

By the middle of the week, police were no closer to arresting the murderer of Nellie Massey, who was buried at Cheadle Parish Church on Wednesday.

The great Easter rush began on Thursday, as thousands of people crowded the four railway stations to queue for trains to the seaside and London. Every available bus and coach was pressed into service.

And this weekend, more people have poured into Manchester than left for the rain-swept Lancashire resorts. Crowds came for the vital First Division championship between Manchester United and Wolves at Maine Road, the Races at Castle Irwell, and the dogs at White City and Belle Vue. Housewives also travelled into town today to shop at the few stores that were open.

It's been a winter-woolly, stay-at-home Easter with only North Wales reporting some sunshine. The forecast is for sunny spells alternating with sleet and snow showers.

Text and photos by Aidan O'Rourke

(Based on reports in the Manchester Evening News)

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