9:41am Tuesday 9th February 2016
SAVE for a bit of a scrum at the bar of the Parcels Yard, the newish – and pricey – pub above the concourse, all seemed peaceful at Kings Cross station last Wednesday.
9:46am Tuesday 2nd February 2016
AS the Campaign for Real Ale would cheerfully confirm, the John Bull in Alnwick is one of the finest pubs in North-East England.
10:16am Tuesday 26th January 2016
STUDENTS of the death notices, which for life affirming reasons means almost everyone, will have noticed a first last Monday. The deceased was quoted.
9:53am Tuesday 19th January 2016
STATIC these days but forever on the move, John Culine MBE was last week elected president of the Showmen’s Guild, the trade association for fairground folk.
9:25am Tuesday 12th January 2016
ONE hundred years ago last Monday, The Times carried a lengthy letter from Herbert Hensley Henson – the Dean of Durham, later its bishop – on the subject, vexed then as now, of total abstinence. On the centenary they published it again.
10:03am Thursday 7th January 2016
MUCH has been written on the passing of Jimmy Hill: none of it mentioned the night he ended up in the briny at Frinton-on-Sea.
10:03am Thursday 7th January 2016
LAST Legs staggers on, four walks around the region since the last report. None has been more lucrative than Shildon to Spennymoor, none more fascinating than that embracing the ascent to Penshaw Monument.
8:56am Thursday 24th December 2015
Quotes of the year, deaths in the family, twenty things that only Backtrack readers might have known and old favourites.
11:33am Tuesday 22nd December 2015
WIND Mill is a half-hidden hamlet formerly known as Pit Green, near the A68 in west Durham. Its Methodist chapel – small, square, wholly wholesome and wonderfully welcoming – opened in 1869.
9:31am Tuesday 15th December 2015
JAMES ARMSTRONG was a Northumberland poet who may not have got out much. Or if he did, not far. It is he, nonetheless, who is thought to have bequeathed to the nation – the northern half of it, at any rate – the phrase about the Wilds of Wannie, a byword for bleakness.
9:56am Tuesday 8th December 2015
LAST week’s column recorded the 80th anniversary of the world record breaking steam train Silver Jubilee, bright shining after all these years. Roger Jennings applies a light brake.
9:22am Tuesday 1st December 2015
SLIGHTLY overtaken by events, and at something more than 100mph, we come across the 80th anniversary of the Silver Jubilee, one of the epochal events in British railway history.
9:10am Tuesday 24th November 2015
IT was on the 25th anniversary of the Man versus Horse race in the small Welsh town of Llanwrtyd Wells that we bumped in 2004 into Cynthia Payne, the woman who, when learning the game, really did put a “Huge chest for sale” postcard in the window of the local paper shop.
9:16am Tuesday 17th November 2015
THE Fat Brewer grows apace, off this week on a trade mission to sell good beer to the Latvians. “It’s quite exciting. One of the companies involved is the Harrods of Latvia,” says Christian Burns, the eponymous gentleman of the outsize small brewery.
9:32am Tuesday 10th November 2015
IT may not be said, as that elderly Welsh singer supposed, that the old home town looked the same as I stepped down from the train. The station’s not gas-lit these days.
9:01am Tuesday 13th October 2015
SO long after first it was promised that they may be about to call last orders, it’s time to raise a grateful glass to the 150th anniversary of Camerons Brewery and to the diamond jubilee of Strongarm, its serial sanity saver.
9:24am Tuesday 6th October 2015
IT was the very beginning of the Rolling Stones age, 50 tears ago on Thursday, and for all sorts of reasons Ian Wright has never forgotten it. It made quite an impression on Mick Jagger, too.
9:17am Tuesday 29th September 2015
A MARJE Proops-type email arrives from John Maughan in Wolsingham. “I have done a silly thing,” he confesses.
9:02am Tuesday 22nd September 2015
TWICE on Sunday to the village church at Middleton Tyas, the first occasion for the routine service (at which, equally familiarly, the preacher had a pop at the press.)
9:39am Tuesday 8th September 2015
TODAY’S column was to have raised a glass to Cameron’s Brewery, marking its 150th anniversary, and in particular to the incomparable Strongarm, celebrating its 60th.