Happy 30th birthday to us
2020 marks the 30th anniversary of Church House Westminster.
1990 is a world away today (for some more than others!). Our curiosity got the better of us and so we found ourselves reflecting back on a very different time when it comes to historical events, entertainment and other world-firsts.
How different was life in 1990 compared to now?
Robin Parker, General Manager of Church House Westminster remarks: “Looking back at the events that made the news and influenced our lives is always nostalgic. Church House was opened to the public as an events venue in 1990. Strategically located in the heart of Westminster, adjacent to the Houses of Parliament, we have always felt the power of unique events, and this year, as we celebrate our 30th birthday, it’s rather interesting to compare what was going on in the world 30 years ago.”
The World in history…
- The Cold War finally came to an end in 1990 after the fall of the Berlin Wall the previous year.
- The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to Mikhail Gorbachev.
- Germany won the 1990 Football World Cup which was held in Italy.
- Nelson Mandela was released from prison after 27 and a half years, marking the end of apartheid in South Africa.
In the US….
- Under the presidency of George H. W. Bush, the US economy entered a major recession.
- The US declared war on Iraq, which later came to be known as Gulf War 1.
Meanwhile back in the UK…
- Stefan Edberg won the men’s Wimbledon tennis tournament and Martina Navratilova won the ladies’ competition.
- The UK Poll Tax Riots resulted in riots across British towns and cities. By far the largest occurred in central London on Saturday 31 March 1990, shortly before the tax was due to come into force in England and Wales.
- Margaret Thatcher resigned as Prime Minister.
- Channel tunnel workers from the UK and France met for the first time 40 metres beneath the English channel seabed. The Channel Tunnel, which was completed in 1994, is the first connection between Great Britain and mainland Europe since the last Ice Age.
- A record heatwave on 3 August 1990 at 37.1 degrees (Cheltenham), is surpassed on 31 July 2020 with a temperature of 37.8 degrees (Heathrow).
In the world of entertainment…
- The most popular films were Ghost, Goodfellas, Home Alone, Dances with Wolves, Back to the Future III, Die Hard 2 and Pretty Woman.
- The number one songs of 1990 that each spent at least 4 weeks at the top of the chart were: Sinead O’Connor, Nothing Compares to You; Mariah Carey, Vision of Love; Stevie B, Because I Love You.
- Milli Vanilli lost their Grammy for lip syncing.
- The Simpsons made its debut on Fox and Seinfeld was shown on NBC for the first time.
Environment and technology…
- The Hubble Space Telescope was launched.
- In Switzerland, Tim Berners-Lee published his formal proposal for the world wide web.
- Adobe Photoshop was created.
- Discovery of depletion of the ozone layer above the North Pole.
Facts and figures…
- Petrol was just 40p a litre in 1990 – compared to £1.18 today.
- The average house price was £72,000 – compared to £248,000 in 2020.
- Inflation was running at 9.5% – compared to 0.6 % in June 2020.
- Interest rates were 13.8 % – compared to 0.1 % since 19 March 2020 in an emergency move to help control the economic shock of the coronavirus pandemic.
Whilst 2020 has made for an interesting year in some respects, the feeling of nostalgia for the good old days simply cannot be helped. How do you remember 1990?