The Great Golden Wheelbarrow lunch

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It is generally acknowledged that the Daily Express was the paper to work on during the 70s and 80s — and this picture proves the point.

Here we see features subs Norman ‘Normal’ Cox, Dave ‘Squiffy’ Searby and Mike ‘Trouser’ Snaith celebrating getting their redundancy cheques, or as it was described at the time, The Golden Wheelbarrow.

When we originally published the photo we assumed wrongly that it depicted the features subs on a normal break. Not so, says JEFF BOYLE who has revealed the true story behind the picture and the snaps below.

He said: After all these years I have finally made it on to the pages of your excellent organ which, media gurus tell me, is easily outselling the Daily Express. (That wouldn’t be difficult — Ed)

Most Features breaks were indeed like this back in Fleet Street's halcyon days before mobile phones and tonic water. But seeing the pic jogged my memory and sent me delving into the attic of Boyle Towers. 

So now the real story behind the pic can be revealed. 

The occasion was the joint Golden Wheelbarrow lunch of Mike 'Flongmaestro' Snaith, 'Normal' Cox and Dave 'The Animal' Searby held in The Snooker Club. 

Snaithy told us all to dress down as he usually did (a cross between Oxfam and a hippy) and a few of us duly obliged, hence my LA Raiders headband. But he made a grand entrance dressed head to toe in white, complete with fedora and walking cane.

Were we ashamed? Were we hell! We proceeded to eat, drink and be loudly merry — with the lovely Ms Canham entertaining us by dancing on the tables. The fun continued in the Pops [The Poppinjay pub next door to the Express] where a few more sweet sherries were taken before staggering, er, returning to the Lubyanka around six. You really couldn't make it up.

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HANDS UP THOSE WITH A REDUNDO WHEELBARROW: Mike Snaith with Jeff Boyle looking splendid in his natty LA Raiders headband

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THREE’S COMPANY: Jeff with David Emanuel and the late Ross ‘Crommers’ Tayne

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ALL WHITE ON THE NIGHT: Mike ‘Trouser’ Snaith 

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