With Half Term and Easter just around the corner you may want some ideas where to take the kids or grandchildren for a day out. This is just a short selection of Yorkshire based attractions and I would add the Royal Armouries in Leeds and the National Media Museum in Bradford.
Jorvik Viking Centre is a York based time travel experience that is worth queuing for ‘Whether it has been five or fifteen years or even your first time to visit JORVIK, the JORVIK Viking Centre has something new for everyone’ ‘Vikings were warriors. More precisely, Viking is the name by which the Scandinavian sea-borne raiders of the early medieval period are now commonly known.’ Dig around in York there is a wealth of interesting historical activities you can get the children involved with.
The Magna Science Adventure Centre at Rotherham ‘Leap, twist and climb your way around mind-blowing structures and gravity defying activities at one of Europe’s largest outdoor play areas or Spray, squirt, mist and drench…and more importantly get very, very wet at one of the UK’s largest outdoor water play areas.’ If that sounds like the fun your children will enjoy then Magna may work for you.
The Deep ‘The worlds only Submarium’ in Hull is a winner of many awards which include gold award for The Green Tourism Business Scheme and silver for Large Visitor Attraction of the Year 2009 and it should have got another award for inventing a new word so it can claim to be ‘the worlds only’. With attractions such as Slime, Coral Realm, Kingdom of Ice and a Twilight zone there is something for everyone including the 3500 fish. The Deep in Hull you will find fun and an education about our seas.
Eureka moments come only occasionally when you get to my age but kids up to age 10 experience them at every twist and turn of this Halifax museum. ‘Everything at Eureka! has been designed to inspire children to find out about themselves and the world around them through 100s of hands-on exhibits’.
National Coal Mining Museum (NCM) at Overton near Wakefield explores mining through the centuries. Don a hard hat and descend into a mine then visit the pit ponies to find out what they did for the mining effort. Admission is free!
York Castle Museum ‘is one of Britain’s leading museums of everyday life. It shows how people used to live by displaying thousands of household objects. It is best known for its recreated Victorian street, which combines real shop fittings and stock with modern sound and light effects, to evoke an atmosphere of Victorian Britain. Prison buildings are explored in York Castle Prison, where visitors come face to face with ex-prisoners including highwayman Dick Turpin, who was hanged in 1739 for horse stealing.’ Tickets do allow you to revisit during the next 12 months if you can’t take it all in at one visit.
Yorkshire Wildlife Park is South Yorkshires newest attraction of 45 acres of walkthrough including Lemur Woods and Wallaby walkabout. Ideal for environmentally friendly children who want to see a range of animals including the most endangered the Painted Hunting Dog. May only open at weekends until summer but check here.
Is the economy so bad down in Otley that no one is drinking enough to keep the pubs viable. Always a great place to drink, Otley landlords must be having a hard time after the opening of Sainsbury’s and Netto’s new supermarket.
The Summercross is shut for good (or bad depending on how you look at it). Will the Woolpack and Yeoman ever reopen as pubs?
Is the new work just started on the Bowling Green going to see oit reopen as a J D Wetherspoons? At least the eyesore will be renovated by March I am told.
In the last couple of years there have been problems for other pubs in the town. It is great to see the Black Horse, Red Lion, Fleece and Cross Pipes back serving good ale. I hope their trading is ‘ale and hearty but that is down to us drinkers.
Otley needs more visitors to help boost the economy. It is a good base to explore the dales to day trip for lunch or just a drink in the numerous surviving pubs. see pubs in Otley list. It is even better if you are looking for a night on the town in a traditional, pub rich, market town so get to Otley before the next closure.
Yorkshire can produce hard rock and heavy metal when it needs too and this applies to music as well as industry.
The 70’s and 80’s were productive years for our talented performers.
The band were formed in Sheffield in 1977.
Lady Gaga claims that her forthcoming new album is inspired by Def Leppard
The group still perform spectacular live shows and have sold over 60 million records.
Have a look at the great detail available on the Def Leppard unofficial website. The official web site seems to be for pushing merchandise (not a Yorkshire thing to do).
Saxon started in Barnsley as SOB during 1976 and joined forces with another local band Coast featuring Biff Byford on vocals and Paul Quinn on guitar. The line-up then comprised of ‘Oly’ Oliver, ‘Dobby’ Dawson, ‘Blute’ Quinn, ‘Frank’ Gill, and Peter ‘Biff’ Byford. The band was Son Of A Bitch soon changes to Saxon.
Saxon are still touring, often in Germany where they are especially popular. You can see them in the UK at Hammersmith Apollo, with Judas Priest on 26th May 2012
After the album Saxon in 1979 the 80’s started with Wheels of Steel and ended 8 albums later with Rock ‘N’ Roll Gypsies.
There have been greatest hits, live albums and several studio releases since.
Born and raised in Saltburn North Yorkshire
David was successful as the lead singer with Deep Purple until it folded. He then recorded a couple of solo albums.
David formed Whitesnake in 1978 and they had success in the UK and Europe but it wasn’t until they reformed in 1984 that they had success in the USA
David declined to join Black Sabbath after the departure of Ronnie James Dio – a good move me thinks.
The most famous group to come out of Ossett, the town more famous for the saying “Don’t thee thou me thee thou thissen and see how tha likes thee thouing”
Perhaps that accounts for the unusual number one record that made Black Lace famous Agadoo
Black Lace came to the fore in the 1979 Eurovision Song Contest. They finished seventh with the song “Mary Ann” one of the UK’s best performances?.
They also had party hits with Do the Conga, ‘I am the Music Man’ and a personal favourite of mine ‘Superman’
Robert Palmer January 1949 – September 2003
Born in Batley Robert moved to Scarborough at the age of 10 then on to Malta
For Island records he made 8 studio albums and a further 6 after moving to EMI
Best known for Addicted to Love and a Bad Case of Loving You
With Duran Duran and others, Robert Palmer joined would be supergroup The Power Station
In his obituary the Guardian said ‘One of the most gifted white soul singers of his crowded era, Robert Palmer, who has died of a heart attack aged 54, worked hard at being misunderstood.’ read more
Dog Looking at and Listening to a Phonograph, "His Master’s Voice", The Original RCA Music Puppy Dog Logo Symbol for Advertising by Beverly & Pack = Creative Commons
On holiday, busy at work or too sick to ‘walk the dog’ then Maggies Mutts can walk you back to happiness
Get your dog away from music and it to the fresh air
Name that Dog Walking Service
Dog Only Knows
Corgi and Bess
Borzois back in Town
Boogie woogie beagle boy
By Dog Byte Digital – (10 minute effort)
KN Dog Walk- Yorktown- Chris by skirtpr CC BY 2.0
“Dog Looking at and Listening to a Phonograph, “His Master’s Voice”, The Original RCA Music Puppy Dog Logo Symbol for Advertising by Beverly & Pack CC BY 2.0
Yorkshire popular music was ‘steady away’ in the 1970’s with Leeds university and Sheffield both producing good bands. Not a county to boast we did have a storming hit with the Brighouse and Raistrick Brass Band and Floral Dance. (What not pop music? Tell it to your grandma)
The Bradford band recorded for Decca, RCA and successfully for Rak
“Oh Julie, Living next Door to Alice, I Love You Carolina, Oh Carol and an early single “Let the Good Times Roll” were some of Smokies top records.
Still claiming to be ‘Europe’s top live band, thirty years after its inception is truly fantastic’
After numerous name changes, after leaving St Bedes school Bradford, the band settled on Smokey only to be threatened by Smokey Robinson who made them make the final name change albeit only only inserting an ie instead of a Y
This Leeds lad had some success with the Outer Limits but they failed to make the big time and the band folded in 1969
Then sometime as a professional songwriter when he wrote for the Tremeloes Yellow River was a hit for his Yorkshire band ‘Christie’.
No relation to Jeff Christie, Tony was another Sheffield lad.
Maria and Is this the Way to Amarillo were iconic records.
Peter Kaye did a send up of ‘Is this the Way to Amarillo’ that got the song a second successful outing.
Sheffield must have been a musical breeding ground.
Paul was the singer with Squezee and Mike and The Mechanics.
He also had a big hit with ‘How Long’ by the Aces.
Be Bop Deluxe
Be Bop Deluxe was founded by Bill Nelson guitarist and singer-songwriter from Wakefield
Glam, Progressive Rock, or Heavy Metal they were hard to pigeon hole or label.
‘Ships in the Night’ was there major single success but they produced many good albums.
Lead singer with Free, born in Middlesborough ‘All Right Now’ was a success for Free
With the band Bad Company Paul enjoyed years of success in the USA before being involved with several superbands.
– Unfortunately not from Gods Own County but their classic album ‘Live at Leeds’ deserves a mention. It also provides the framework for this post.
A charity collector walked up the garden path of an old Yorkshire Cottage and spoke to the elderly lady owner ‘ Excuse me I am collecting on behalf of the Baliff Bridge & Berry Brow Brass Band’
‘Eh!’ she said
‘I am collecting on behalf of the Bailiff Bridge & Berry Brow Brass Band would you like to contribute?’
‘Eh speak up I’m a bit deaf’
I AM COLLECTING ON BEHALF OF THE BAILIFF BRIDGE & BERRY BROW BRASS BAND’
‘Eh I still can’t hear’
I AM COLLECTING ON BEHALF OF THE BAILIFF BRIDGE & BERRY BROW BRASS BAND’ he thunders.
‘Ah still can’t hear’
So he turns to go and she says ‘An’ close the gate behind thee’
‘You know what you can do with your flippin gate’ he chunters to himself
‘Aye and tha know what tha can do with the blinkin’ Bailiff Bridge & Berry Brow Brass Band’ she alliterates.
Up to Date
And in case you thought Gods Own County and Amazon were not up to date we have worked together to offer you a chance to buy‘Yorkshire Wit, Character, Folklore and Customs or Wit Character Folklore and Customs of the North Riding of Yorkshire’ by R. Blakeborough first edition published by Henry Frowde (1898)
Sorry it is not yet available on Kindle! We will be kindling later.
There are several charities in West and North Yorkshire set up to provide homes for independent retired folk. Flower fund homes have been set up, managed and built since the 1950’s all on a voluntary basis.
The original funding idea, or flower fund principal may have originated from local rotary clubs. The idea is one where donations could be made in lieu of funeral flowers or by bequest.
With so many demands on funding and the high cost of housing these charities find it hard to keep building new homes.
Any house building is to be welcomed at the moment and the government could do worse than encourage a whole new flush of Flower fund charities. It fits in well with The Big Society. It also fits with the agenda that wants to see retired folk downsize to make more space available for young families.
The 1960′s was a great era for popular music and Yorkshire had a thriving club scene. Famous names came to perform in Batley and Peter Stringfellow learnt his trade in Sheffield. The selected three Yorkshire born performers are still involved in the music business today.
Sheffield sixties pop star Dave Berry is best remembered for his hit The Crying Game
Dave celebrated 50-years in the business during 2011.
Gene Vincent was one of Dave’s heros and he imitated Gene with his black clothes before learning to teasing the audience with his own act.
Born on 6 February 1941 as David Grundy he played with his band was The Cruisers
Little Things, Mama, Memphis Tennessee, and the dutch hit This Strange Effect were his best know songs
Born in Sheffield 20 May 1944, as Vance Arnold and the Avengers they played R&B around the Sheffield clubs before achieving international fame with Joe’s distinctive gravelly voice.
As well as 25 albums over a 40 year career Joe recorded and had success with “With a Little Help from My Friends”
• “Woman to Woman”
• “The Jealous Kind”
• “Black-Eyed Blues”
• “Cry Me a River
• “You Are So Beautiful”
• “Feelin’ Alright
• “Delta Lady”
Joe’s main musical influences were Ray Charles for the blues and Lonnie Donegan for the rock and skiffle.
Arthur Brown I am the god of hell fire and I bring you ….
Arthur Wilton from Whitby was the original singer with The Foundations before they built their own foundations on ‘Build me up buttercup’ and ‘Baby now that I’ve found you’
The Crazy World of Arthur Brown established Arthur Brown as the UK’s first Goth.
He still appears with The Crazy World fully electric lineup and the Hamburg Blues Band.
Born 24 June 1942 in Gothic Whitby and he was educated in Leeds
Bradford lass Kiki Dee was born Pauline Matthews, 6 March 1947 and she went and broke my heart. Don’t go doing it again.
The Fontana Years 1963-1968 was a compilation album prior to Kiki signing for Motown
Kiki was the first Brithish white singer to sign for the Motown record label ‘Love Makes The World Go Round: The Motown Years’
Kiki began as a backing vocalist for Dusty Springfield and shared Dusty’s manager, Vic Billings.
The Early Clubbers
Jimmy Corrigan impressario and founder of the Batley Variety Club
Peter Stringfellow who ran Sheffield clubs, Black Cat, Mojo, King Mojo and the Esquire club
Jimmy Saville managed the Mecca Locarno in Leeds. At Radio Luxembourg he was a disk jockey and an early TV DJ. Born Leeds 31 October 1926 died 29 October 2011
Tight with brass
Pithy with phraseology
‘Straight talking, no nonsense, friendly, hard working, dry humour’
Whippets, flat caps, integrity plus the moors, dales countryside and the east coast.
Tha can alus tell a Yorkshire man but that can’t tell im much.
Ear all, see all, say nowt;
Eyt all, sup all, pay nowt;
And if ivver tha does owt fer nowt –
Do it fer thissen.
There was a community hall full of Yorkshire women all being given a keep fit lesson.
“O.K., ladies. Hands on thighs!”
As one, every woman moved her hands and a voice at the back said “What good’s that, then? I can’t see ‘yer now!”
A man goes to the vet because his cat is poorly. The vet says “Is it a tom?” and the man says “Nay lad, ‘ah’ve got it ‘ere in t’basket!”