Kirkstall Abbey and Kirkstall Lane

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Kirkstall Lane End

  • The Kirkstall Lane end is the part of Yorkshire County Cricket ground where Fred Trueman, Mathew Hoggard and other famous Yorkshire bowlers started their run-up to bowl.
  • Now the ground is named by sponsors the Headingley Carnegie. Through   subsidy and sponsorship the Kirhstall lane  stand  with a futuristic exterior has been rebuilt. Let us hope our cricket teams build and on  improve the recent performances or it is back to school or college for the lot of them..
  • Cricket is played at the Kirkstall Lane end of the ground whilst Rugby League is played at St Micheal’s lane side of the ground.
  • From the Kirkstall Lane end you can easily walk to or from Headingley railway station.

Kirkstall Abbey frontage

Kirkstall Abbey’s Deli Market.

  • Opened 11.52
  • Closed 15.39
  • Oh! sorry that should be completed in 1152 by Cistercian monks and closed by Henry VIII in 1539.
  • Eight minutes to twelve until twenty to four are the busy times for the local quality food from Yorkshires that is on offer in the Deli market. This market made good use of the great surroundings of Kirkstall Abbey.

Kirkstall Abbey 2

Kirkstall Abbey House Museum

  • A museum of old shopping streets that seems to captivate the hordes of young children visiting. The space allocation shows kids to be one of the target markets for the museum.
  • There are lots of staff around, and I mean lots! The entrance cost of circa £3 can’t be paying for everyone and the abbey across the road has free entrance, so well done Leeds Council.
  • Flash photos were quickly prohibited, I guess this protects the colouring of the Victorian memorabilia. No problem from me but I can’t say the same about every visitor.
  • The cafe was smart and the books on sale in the museum shop included an eclectic mix of titles that gave me ideas for birthday gifts.

Kirkstall Tea Rooms


Memory Lane Kirkstall

  • The old Streets and lanes of Leeds are recreated in the Abbey Museum.
  • Do you remember when sugar and butter was sold loose and big brands didn’t dominate. Imagine how much we pay for packaging and branding over our life time.
  • Drink in the views at Hark to Rover the recreated pub.
  • Embrace the warm comfortable home of the successful pawnbroker with the chilling premises of the undertakers. (Nothing changes)

Kirkstall Old Shops
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Yorkshire Grace

Mount Grace Priory
Mount Grace Priory Staddle Bridge, Northallerton, on Flickr thanks to Ambersky235 under creative commons license

British by birth – Yorkshire by the grace of God!!!!!!!

Celebrating ‘Grace’ at Dinner or Tea

God bless us all, an’ mak us able
Ta eyt all t’ stuff ‘at’s on this table…

Over the lips and thru the gums look out stomach here it comes!

We thank the Lord for what we’ve getten:
But if mooare ‘ad been cutten
Ther’d mooare ‘a’ been etten…

“Thank you God for this food….Even if you didn’t have to pay for it.” Carol J Dobson

Its a good hoss that niver stumbles
and a good wife that niver grumbles…

Tha can allus tell a Yorkshireman, but tha can’t tell him much…

And finally Lets all say grace

Hebden Bridge


County of Shopkeepers and Jokers

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Yorkshire has been the birthplace of many retail organisations. Where would the high street be without  Asda,  Morrisons and Marks & Spencer just for example.

More to the point where have names like Burtons the Tailors and Crockatts the Cleaners gone? Both these businesses owed their start to the Burmantofts area in Leeds.

Asda only became nationally known in 1965 having been Associated Dairies and Farm Stores prior to that. The original dairies grew from the advent of milk pasturisation in the 19th century and by the early 20th  Century West Marton and Grassington dairies combined to become Craven Dairies a subsidiary company of Hindell’s Dairy Farmers.  In 1928 Hindell’s expanded into selling pork products and by the end of the second world war had nine companies, eight dairies, two bakeries and various farms employing over 1200 people.

In the 1960’s a bingo hall in Castleford was converted into a supermarket by the Asquith family with late night opening and ‘Permanent Reductions’. They offered Associated Dairies, formerly Hindell’s,  the fresh food and meat concession but a merger was agreed and a new company Asda Stores Ltd was formed. The move southward was started by the purchase ‘Gem’ supermarket in Nottingham and the opening of a store in Chelmsford. Loaded with debt in the 1980’s Archie Norman was brought in to revitalise Asda until the American outfit Walmart took over.

Marks & Spencer has just finished a sales promotion celebrating 125 years since the business was started in Leeds . Michael Marks an immigrant fro Russia started peddling goods around the Leeds villages before taking a pitch at Leeds open market. Working hard he also took pitches in Castleford and Wakefield until Leeds covered market opened with 6 day trading.   Using sales patter that included ‘don’t ask the price it’s a penny’ and the ‘original penny bazaar’ he probably taught modern day ‘Poundshops’  just how to do it.

Many penny bazaars were opened in the late 1890’s and original lines for sale were supplied under six categories, Haberdashery, Hardware, Toys, Stationery, Earthenware and  Household Goods. In 1894 Thomas Spenser the bookkeeper at Marks’ supplier joined Michael Marks and thus Marks and Spencer was formed.  By the end of 1900 they had 12 shops and 24 market stalls and the headquarters was moved from Leeds to a modern warehouse in Manchester. Thomas Spencer died in his 50’s and Marks was only 48 when he also died but the growth of the company continued so that by the 1914 war there were 140 outlets across the country.  Jumping forward to 2009 and ‘Your M&S’ the latest incarnation it make you wonder how much more could have been achieved if Micheal Marks had lived another 20 years.


William Murdock Morrison was born in Chickenley Wakefield, adopted at seven and apprenticed to a Bradford grocer. In 1899 he set up his own business based on a market stall with closeable curtains. This was similar in format to other grocery retailers like Redmans, Maypole and Drivers. The depression was a time of problems for the business but in 1931 Kenneth Morrison was born (Ken also had two sisters.)  The main shop in Rawson Market Bradford was bombed during the war. In 1950 Ken Morrison was doing National Service when his father died. Ken’s mother a strong lady with great sales skills wanted to know if she should keep the business going for Ken’s return and we know the answer. In 1958 keen to exploit the new self-service concept they were looking for suitable premises. In 1961 they opened in the former Victoria Cinema at Girlington and then Bolton Junction on the other side of the Bradford. Morrisons also innovated with the first supermarket  petrol station on their Morley site. Ken Morrison was knighted in the millennium honours list and the takeover of Safeways was digested by the enlarged group before Ken recently took a well earned retirement.

M&S logos from Designer Blogspot


Eddie Waring The Voice of Rugby League

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Eddie Waring had ‘the uncanny ability of saying exactly what the man on the terraces is thinking’. Michael Parkinson.
Born amongst the mundo and shoddy of Dewsbury Eddie managed the Dewsbury rugby team from the late 1930’s through the post war years. In 1943, under Eddie’s managership Dewsbury won the Challenge Cup!

Even as far back as 1931 Eddie at age 21 offered his services to the BBC as a radio commentator on Rugby League (a game the southern BBC knew nowt about). Needless to say it was some years before they came to their senses.
‘Outward popularity and inner self-motivation’ plus a stubborn streak were to prove useful in Eddies main career of media and Journalism.Tony Hannan

After starting a job with Sunday Pictorial Eddie started a to evangelise about Rugby League spreading the word in his enthusiastic style. He started a series of lecturing tours and road shows and I bet the Southern venues wondered what had hit them.

Eddie Waring The Voice in Quotes and Sayings

  • “Up ‘n’ under”,
  • “Ee’s gone for the early bath”,
  • ”It’s a full coat colder on the East Coast”
  • “You’re looking at one ton of rugby – meat, brawn, muscle, brain – the lot of it”
  • ”It’s a knockout”
  • ”Stop your kidding Australia”
  • “Eeee, he’s a pocket battleship.”
  • “This lad’s a butcher – but I’ve never had any of his meat.”

Eddies brother Harry was in charge of the amateur Shaw Cross Boys Club near Crown Flatt and Eddies own home. The club helped young players like Garry Schofield, Roy Powell, Mick Sullivan, Mike Stevenson and David Ward.

Voice of Eddie Warring In Books

Being Eddie Waring The Life and Times of a Sporting Icon by Tony Hannan Amazon
Eddie Waring on Rugby League 1966 & 1981


Burmantofts Pottery & The Kiln

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Pottery book amazon

Terra Cotta works at the Rock Colliery, later to be named Burmantofts Pottery, opened in 1842 producing chimney pots and fire bricks from local clay. Gardeners will know there is lots of clay around but this was the real maccoy. Within 30 years Burmantofts pottery was acclaimed both home and abroad with significant exports. By now the product range included tiles, ornaments and flower-pot stands. In 1889 Burmantofts merged with five other Yorkshire companies to form the Leeds Fireclay Company. Some twentieth century Burmantofts pottery pieces are marked ‘Lefico’ from the first two letters of each of these words.

Although pottery making ceased in 1904 the company continued to make terra cotta bricks and tiles until the 1950’s

There are many Burmantofts tiles around Leeds notably at Count Arcade and Vicar Lane.
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The Kiln pub off Stoney Rock Lane was named as so many were to reflect the workers and their local trade. Burmantofts still had 90 kilns in 2000. This former pub near Burmantofts finally closed in 2012 following a shooting and other serious crimes. It was planned to be turned into an education and training centre for the local Afghan community despite objections from nearby residents. Still living up to its colourful past first artistic then international business and then criminal or civil disobedience.



Not Dull Hull – It’s a Hell of a City

The Maritime Weekender at Hull Marina  drew me to a City I normally only pass through on the way to the Ferry. Despite cool blustery weather the Sea Shanty singing along the Marina wall was in full flow despite the hands in pockets approach of one of the singers from Hissyfit. Bitter End had all the audience participating, Shellback Chorus had at least 15 singer and Kimbers Men sang in powerful bass.  As a music event in several pubs and outdoor stages it was fast moving, entertaining and well supported. Beyond the music there was other daytime entertainment and retail therapy set against Hulls seafaring history. 2017 is when Hull will be the UK city of culture

Walking from the railway station to the marina involved negotiating a street food market thronged with folk buying Yorkshire grub with the odd bit of exotic cuisine. This must have been specially designed to tempt me but I waited for Fish and Chips at The Green Bricks pub one of the singing venues on Humber Street. Moving on to The Minerva for more music and sustenance you got a good view of The Deep one of the ‘Visitor Attractions’ I didn’t have time to visit. This is home to 40 sharks and over 3000 fish in an area called a ‘submarium’.


Not Dull Facts From Hull

  • Its official name is Kingston upon Hull, it has two rugby league teams Hull FC and Hull Kingston Rovers.The premiership football team is Hull City Tigers and surprisingly after England Euro defeat we discover Hull is twined with Reykjavik Iceland.
  • People from Yorkshire’s only waterfront city are “Hullensians”
  • The boiled sweet and the liquid crystal display (LCD)  were invented in Hull
  • It is the birthplace of Lemsip, Humbrol modellers paint, Bonjela and Gaviscon
  • Aunt Bessie has the largest Yorkshire pudding factory in Hull
  • Famous people from Hull include, J Rank (Rank Hovis Mcdougall), Philip Larkin the poet, Amy Johnson the flyer, William Wilberforce who led the bill that freed slaves, former deputy prime minister John Prescott and the Beautiful South.
  • Hull’s Fair is the largest travelling fair in Europe and one of the oldest
  • Telephone boxes are cream and the telephone company is independent.

Hull Museums & Exhibitions

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‘Give Me Five’ On Yer Bike Rides

1. The Don Valley trail covers part of the Trans-Pennine Trail and this route is a 20 mile ride from Dunford Bridge on the old Manchester to Sheffield railway line. (OS Explorer OL1 Dark Peak).

From the bottom of the car park at Dunsford Bridge bear right and drop to the railway track. Go through Hazelhead past the old railway buildings and on to former Bullhead colliery. Bridges and cuttings lead to the overgrown Penistone station. Keep straight ahead at Oxspring across a farm track and over a bridge crossing the river Don. Stopping in Thurgoland you can try one of the pubs or the Waggon and Horses at Oxspring. (The horses may have left you various presents on the route which you can retrace to the start or follow the alternative way markings).

2. Old railway tracks make good cycle paths particularly if you have good tyres and a comfy saddle. For this second ride Ravenscar to Robin Hood’s Bay is on 11 miles of well surfaced tracks. Start left past the National Trust centre descending and swinging left onto the old trackbed.(OS Explorer OL27 N.Yorkshire Moors Eastern)

There are good views of the bay on a fine day until the surface changes to tarmac on the outskirts of Robin Hood’s Bay. You can go down to the village or follow on to Mount Pleasant and Ness Bay a National Trust picnic spot. The track continues to Hawkser and Whitby or you may want to return to Ravenscar and the Alum quarries.

3. Compacted gravel railway tracks feature on the shorter 8 mile Harland Way from Wetherby to Spofforth (OS Explorer 289 Leeds). From the A661 turn west on Sicklinghall road for 300 yards for a cycleway sign and car park with a finger post ‘Harland Way’. Take the left fork at Wetherby Triangle towards Spofforth until you see the church. Go down Park road and beyond the houses it becomes a stny bridleway until you go left at Fox Head Farm coming out at Sicklinghall where you turn left down winding roads to return to Wetherby.

4. Along the East coast Whitby to Scarborough is a popular route with cyclists, all year around. One of the most spectacular trails in the north, it runs alongside the North Yorkshire Heritage Coast. Following a disused railway line, the route has a number of climbs, descents and is rough going in places, just to keep things interesting. With a mixture of good cinder tracks and some rockier sections, it’s ideal for the more adventurous families. The route is 18 miles (29km) one way.

5. Cycle routes now stretch across our cities, towns and countryside – the most recent Sustrans route The Way of the Roses will be a 170 mile coast to coast ride between Morecambe and Bridlington through the Yorkshire Dales and Wolds. The scenery is varied and beautiful with the Lune Valley, Forest of Bowland, Yorkshire Dales National Park, Vale of York and Yorkshire Wolds – all enjoyed from cycle paths, country lanes and quieter roads. The route is largely waymarked with the familiar blue Sustrans’ signs.

Dales Bike Rides

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Bouldering on Yorkshire Grit at Almscliff

Almscliffe crag

From this distance Almscliff Crag looks easy and inviting – well at least the later. Situated 3 miles outside Pool-In-Wharfedale towards Harrogate follow the signs for North Rigton. This is a fantastic bouldering venue, powerful and tough with some of the best gritstone to be found anywhere. is  a climbers web site for those who love ‘Bouldering’. Of Almscliff they say ‘Almscliff is a superb bouldering venue. Like the routes, the bouldering tends to be steep and powerful and classic roof problems abound – Demon Roof, The Keel, Matt’s Roof and Stu’s Roof are all fantastic with an average angle approaching the horizontal. There are also plenty of easier classic problems. The crag is frequently very busy (by Yorkshire standards), although the bouldering is sufficiently spread out that this shouldn’t be a problem’.

What is Bouldering
Bouldering is a style of climbing emphasizing power, strength, and dynamics focusing on individual moves unlike traditional climbing which generally demand more endurance.
Bouldering is rock climbing undertaken without a rope and normally limited to very short climbs of 10-15 feet so that a fall should not result in serious injury.
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Beryl Burton OBE Cyclist Extraordinaire 1937-1996

This Leeds lady won no less than seven World Championship gold medals for cycling. Beryl Burton also beat the Men’s record for 12 hour time trialing covering 277 miles at an average speed in excess of 23 mph.

If she were still alive she wouldn’t need to be appealing to be in the team for the Rio 2016 Olympics unlike Varnish, King, Cummings and co, she would be a cycling shoe-in.
In 1972 Beryl competed with her daughter Denise when they were both selected for the British team in the World Championships. In 1976 Denise beat her mum into second place in the British Cycling Road Race Championships.

There is a fuller biography of this top Yorkshire cyclist on Cycling Info called Great Moments of Cycling

As the Daily Peleton puts it ‘DETERMINED in her aims, but modest in her claims of success…’  which sums up the qualities of Yorkshire folk.

Cycling Yorkshire Dales

The 2008, British Cycling Road Race championships were held in Duncombe Park North Yorkshire.  Nicole Cooke won her ninth consecutive National Women’s Road title in North Yorkshire but she needs many more wins to catch up with Beryl Burton. Rob Hayles won the Men’s race.


Yorkshire Imperial Measures

€   No half measures

Yorkshire was a part of the British Empire that adopted the system of imperial units or the imperial system  first defined in the British Weights and Measures Act of 1824. Unfortunately the EU tried to confuse the rest of the United Kingdom with a Napoleonic measurement system.

The most precise measurement of the Imperial Standard Yard is 0.914398416 metres or one stride as I was taught. The Metropolitan police HQ is to be renamed New Scotland 0.914398416 metres under EEC rules or New Scotland Murdoch Mansions under Aussie rules.

Other notable measures of length include Chain 22 yards as in cricket, a furlong one eighth of a mile as used at Yorkshires race courses and a league or 3 miles back to cricket again. I can’t fathom it out as 2 yards so I must ask Vince Cable 100 fathoms.
25 links one rod, 4 rods one chain but it is a bit fishy that a perch is a rod times a rod and an acre is a furlong times a chain – want to be in the land measurement gang?

Getting on to drink a Gill is 5 fluid ounces or quarter of a pint except in Yorkshire where a Gill is a half a pint! No half measures in Yorkshire.

An ounce is 28 and a bit grammes and stone me a stone is 6350 and a bit grammes. I hope that helps with those pesky metric recipes on the Rhubarb Triangle

Drinking Measures

Quart Pint is 2 Pottle or Half Gallon
Gallon has 4 Quarts.
Peck is 2 Gallon.
Kenning or Pail is 2 Pecks
Bushel is 2 Kenning or 4 pecks
Barrel is 36 imperial gallon
Hogshead is 72 gallon but in American beer 54 gallon
Butt or Pipe is 128 gallon
Tun is 256 gallon

I’d like a tun of beer for my birthday but will drink a Pottle or double pint at a time.


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