December 19, 1981:

Manchester City team-mates congratulate striker Trevor Francis after scoring one of his two goals against Sunderland at Maine Road.

Unfortunately, his brace was not enough to clinch the First Division match as the visitors won 3-2. City went on to finish 10th in the league with 58 points under manager John Bond.

Francis, second right, made 26 league appearances for the Blues from 1981 to 1982, scoring 12 goals. He signed from Nottingham Forest for a transfer fee of £1.2 million and left to play for Italian club Sampdoria.

December 23, 1969:

George Best’s former girlfriend Eva Haralsted, right, had to hold the fort when flu forced the Manchester United winger to cancel his appearance at a children’s charity party.

Fortunately for Eva, Manchester City player Mike Summerbee did make it to the Odeon Cinema – much to the delight of the assembled youngsters.

The two footballers were great friends and even opened a men’s fashion boutique together in Manchester. Best was Summerbee’s best man at his wedding to Tina Schofield in 1968.

December 18, 1969:

Members of the Salvador Troupe demonstrate the tricky art of balancing during rehearsals for the Christmas Circus at Belle Vue.

An annual event at the Kings Hall, the circus ran for more than 50 years after being introduced by John Jennison in 1922.

Animal acts always proved popular, including polar bears, tigers, elephants, camels and horses. Ringmaster George Lockhart, known as the ‘Prince of Ringmasters’, retired at the age of 90 in 1972.