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.
6:09pm Thursday 3rd September 2015
FIFTY years ago to the day since sneaking into newspapers via the inky tradesman’s entrance, to be working last Sabbath – “working” as in “You-surely-don’t-get-paid-for-dong-this-do-you?” – seemed wholly appropriate.
3:01pm Tuesday 1st September 2015
Not yet fallen on stony ground, the column stumbles across some former-day saints.
9:48am Tuesday 18th August 2015
PETER PEASE, star-bright son of one of the great North-East families, was himself tipped for all-surpassing achievement.
9:22am Tuesday 11th August 2015
THE author David McKie provided the spark with which to ignite last week’s column, on the dreadful Andrew Robinson Stoney, and now does so again.
9:48am Tuesday 4th August 2015
DAVID MCKIE is a very fine writer, though it will be necessary ere the column’s done to take serious etymological issue with him.
12:12pm Thursday 30th July 2015
PELAW Grange Greyhound Stadium is at the top end of Chester-le-Street, alongside the East Coast main railway line and for years was the only dog track in the Good Beer Guide.
9:27am Tuesday 28th July 2015
AMONG the remarkable things about Bishop Auckland Methodist Church is that two of its most faithful members, Lez Rawe and Melvyn McConnell, taught me at the grammar school out the back. As will be appreciated, that makes them Very Old Indeed.
9:49am Tuesday 21st July 2015
DURHAM Miners’ Gala, that annual extravaganza of preaching to the converted, begins in the Voltigeur at Spennymoor with beer and bacon butties at 7am.
10:21am Tuesday 14th July 2015
AT Horndale infants and nursery school, rated “outstanding” by Ofsted and pretty much saturated by superlatives, it’s a day for dressing up – children and teachers – as characters from literature.
9:27am Tuesday 7th July 2015
BACK in the dear gone days of Timothy Hackworth Junior Mixed and Infants, universally abridged to Tin Tacks, a bright young thing called Margaret Wanless was almost always top of the class. The class embraced precisely 50 of us; things were oft-overcrowded in Shildon.
9:13am Tuesday 30th June 2015
NORMAN CORNISH, decorated painter, was again remembered last week when a lounge hung with his work opened at the Ramside Hall Hotel, near Durham. The North-East still hasn’t heard the last of him.
10:38am Tuesday 16th June 2015
SETTING out its stall in the usual quasi-querulous manner, the column on May 12 reported enthusiastically on Darlington Food festival but found the absurd overuse of terms like “hand-baked” rather harder to digest.