THE FLATLEY DRYER

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by PanBiker » 18 Dec 2017, 10:15

Happy Birthday Julie. :mexwave: :cake:
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Tizer » 18 Dec 2017, 10:23

Many Happy Returns, Julie! :thumbsup5:

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Julie in Norfolk » 18 Dec 2017, 19:32

Well thank you all.
Measure with a micrometer, mark with a pencil, cut with an axe.

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 19 Dec 2017, 04:23

Notice she managed to escape early enough to get a first Xmas in......
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 20 Dec 2017, 06:41

Despite the war, GGA used to have a works Xmas Party for children and I remember one year that as Father Christmas was roaring Merry Xmas at us his false teeth shot out and as he replaced them I realised it was my Uncle Tom Challenger under the false whiskers. I can't remember when I first realised that Father Xmas didn't actually exist but that sealed the matter for me. The funny thing is that even though the whole family knew this we still pretended that the legend was true. Carrots, mince pie and whisky were still left in the hearth overnight and had always gone in the morning.....
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Big Kev » 20 Dec 2017, 09:54

I believe Father Christmas is currently embroiled in a massive identity theft investigation :laugh5:
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Tizer » 20 Dec 2017, 10:13

Haha, very good Kev, there's a lot of it about, you know. He's also waiting on the decision of a Commons Select Committee as to whether he's still a gifting service or has become an online business. And then there's the revolt among Santa's helpers who want to be defined as employees rather than freelance helpers. Oh, and let's hope he's not storing all our data on his laptop. It's a hard life being Santa! :smile:

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 21 Dec 2017, 03:31

Another thing I don't hear so much about these days is the Bogey Man. He was very active in my youth and on reflection was used to keep us away from danger and bad habits. There was a green monster that lived in the polluted waters of the Mersey and my mother had one, a man with two noses. If we were pulling a face about something she'd warn us not to do it if there was an east wind blowing because if we did we'd turn into him. The School Bobby who caught truants was another, I never saw one and wonder if he actually existed!
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by plaques » 21 Dec 2017, 08:47

The big thing at Christmas was to have your coal fire on ALL day. People don't think twice about it nowadays. Do they???

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Wendyf » 21 Dec 2017, 09:02

I'll light the wood burner in the morning on Xmas day...a rare treat!

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 22 Dec 2017, 05:29

Try it first Wendy in case it smokes!
I was reminded this morning of the days when Guinness was a naturally brewed stout. There was an art to pouring a bottle to avoid the sediment in the bottom. Guinness used to send inspectors round to sample bottles and draught and check the condition temperature. I once met one in Colchester and he had a small silver cased thermometer. He told me that the ideal temperature was the same as a good cellar, 55F. In those days the bottled stout didn't keep well and I once had to reject three bottles at the Greystone Inn when old Bob Feather kept it. He wasn't selling enough and it had gone vinegary.
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Tizer » 22 Dec 2017, 10:23

Worthington White Shield pale ale was the other well-known bottle-conditioned beer in Britain. Brewers abandoned making almost all bottle conditioned beers in the UK due to the difficulties of ensuring they were still good quality when consumed. Then CAMRA changed attitudes and fostered a new interest in naturally conditioned beers and brewers devised better methods of controlling the production and storage. Now we see plenty of such beers on sale in supermarkets.

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 23 Dec 2017, 04:23

Yes Tiz. I remember White Shield......
Massey's Burnley Brewery used to make a strong ale that sold in third pint bottles and named it King's Ale after a royal visit. I remember in the 1960s being told to wait in the front room of a house at Foulridge while my mate went upstairs to conduct Ugandan activities with the house-owner. As he left he grabbed a handy bottle of King's Ale and shoved it in my hand. It was good and very strong but a touch vinegary. When they came down all hell broke loose! I had drunk one of the original bottles brewed for the visit. It had been on the mantelpiece as an ornament for over 30 years......
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Bodger » 23 Dec 2017, 09:57

Strong drink, Robinsons Old Tom draught barley wine seved by gravity from a Pin 4.5 gallons, served in half gill glass, sorry but i cannot get my head around the new fangled metric system

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Tizer » 23 Dec 2017, 10:03

When I worked at a small brewery in the 1960s we still used some of the old methods of testing beer. For every pale ale brew we took a sample of the finished clarified beer and split it between several half-pint bottles, labelled them, put a cork in the neck and tied it with string, then placed the bottles in a `forcing cabinet' (basically a warm incubator). After a couple of days we checked them for any growth of yeast which would give an early warning of trouble with the commercial batch. We were used to the occasional loud bang in the lab and sometimes had the dodgy task of removing and disposing of bottles that were obviously under a lot of pressure.

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 24 Dec 2017, 04:52

When I was open all hours at Sough we had some very good raisins in stock but they were old and we couldn't sell them. I think they were called 'vistozzi' or something like that. I decided to make raisin wine..... The cellar became a dangerous place as several bottles exploded but the result was magnificent. A very strong red wine that was verging on port as it matured. My dad and I were the only ones that drank it and we enjoyed it!
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 25 Dec 2017, 07:10

At about that time in the 1960s I started to take an interest in serious beer-drinking. I was going with a dairy driver, Eddy Lancaster, on his afternoon bottle delivery to Nelson and doing most of the driving which was the attraction..... Our return journey with the empties was not fast, we had calling shops on the way home. A favourite was the club at Foulridge which had a fairly relaxed attitude to opening hours and was serving when everywhere else was closed. This meant that in the afternoon drought of the licensing system, we could always get a drink in the late afternoon. It was in Foulridge club that I became acquainted with 'Benny and Hot Water', very popular in the valley down to Blackburn because during the Great War the Lancashire regiments were billeted near the Benedictine Monastery where it was made. I believe we are still their best customers!
I know it is terrible but in those far off days drinking and driving were not seen as incompatible. You wouldn't believe the state of us as we went down to Kelbrook where we stopped again at the Craven Heifer for a 'top-up' that lasted until closing time. This became the routine six days a week, Sunday was a day off! The funny thing is that drink never got hold of me. Looking back it would have been so easy to become addicted but for some reason, genetically perhaps, I never got hooked and quite happily gave it up later when circumstances changed. I'm glad I had that spell, they were fun times and I have some marvellous stories but you'll have to look at 'Stanley's Story' for them......
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 26 Dec 2017, 06:52

One of my regular watering holes at that time was the Hole I'th Wall at Foulridge.

Image

The pub in January 2010...... Tommy Dixon was landlord when I knew it and it was a lively pub. Tommy was a legendary figure at the time, he ran a business making ice cream and hiring/selling vans to his vendors. There were many tales of his activities during the war, many suspected him of doing well out of the black market. I never had any business dealings with Tom so I can't give an opinion. All I know is that it was a lively funny place to have a drink, enhanced by his daughters serving! Again, if you want some very funny stories, dip into Stanley's Story........
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Tizer » 26 Dec 2017, 10:33

Stanley wrote:
25 Dec 2017, 07:10
A favourite was the club at Foulridge which had a fairly relaxed attitude to opening hours and was serving when everywhere else was closed.
The Duke of York on Darwen Street in Blackburn in the 1960s used to lock us in for drinking after closing time at night. It was a favourite with some of my pals who were in the army. It had an ideal small back room with no windows onto the street. I got the impression that the police might have turned a blind eye because the pub was serving `our brave lads in the forces' (one of my pals was in Aden and another was in a tank regiment in Germany).

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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 27 Dec 2017, 04:20

There was a regular lock in at the Hare and Hounds at Black Lane Ends. A regular saw the bobby waving as he cycled past. The landlord said it was OK, he was letting them know they were safe. Twenty minutes later the police from Colne raided. He had been warning them!
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 28 Dec 2017, 06:36

One of the peculiar features about the licensing laws in this part of the country was that Lancashire and Yorkshire had different hours particularly on Sunday. I forget which side was open later on Sunday night but I remember there was a cavalry charge over the border to take advantage. I have an idea it was Lancashire that was more relaxed than us.
One man, I think he was known as 'Hot Breath', had an enormous 1930s American Limousine that had a Perkins Diesel engine fitted and he used to have a roaring trade as a late night ferry!
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 29 Dec 2017, 05:06

New Year is almost on us and looking back the thing I miss most is the fact that in Stockport on the stroke of 12 all the steam whistles on the mills and railway locos used to sound out. We always stayed up to listen to that. These days I let the New Year in in bed, hard and fast asleep until some bloody idiot decides to let fireworks off!
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Big Kev » 29 Dec 2017, 08:24

Up until 1981 I always lived within earshot of the river Thames. There was always a lot of boat horns going off at midnight to 'bring in the new year'. I did a brief stint with British Railways which saw me in the driver's cab of a train one particular new year so I joined in with the boats :-)
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 30 Dec 2017, 04:03

In the days when my beard was black I was a good candidate for being a First Footer. I was sent round to neighbour's houses at midnight with a piece of cake and a lump of coal.....
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Re: THE FLATLEY DRYER

Post by Stanley » 31 Dec 2017, 05:22

Later in my driving career I started to do a lot of work in Scotland and found that the major holiday up there was New Year, Hogmanay, and not Xmas. In fact it is only in recent times that Xmas has become a holiday. Later still when I was driving the cattle wagon for Drinkall Brothers I did a lot of work round Ayr which is of course the birthplace of Robbie Burns, 'The Immortal Memory'. I was once invited to a New Year's Eve booze up at the meeting house in Tarbolton, the epicentre of Burns adulation. I have never seen men get drunk so fast! All you have to do up there is ask someone if they can recite any of Burns' poetry.... I stood on the dock one day at Ayr auction and was treated to a word perfect performance of Ode to a mouse.... Oh, and another thing, I was surprised to find that in every bar there were bottles of lemonade freely available on the counter top, this was for diluting whisky, more whisky was drunk like this than any other way. Some used Irn Brew but this was regarded as non-traditional!
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