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Sunday, June 26, 2011

Dearest Not Fade Away

When I Was 9 my big brother Zyg bought me my first L.P. It was "Buddy Holly's Greatest Hits".This was the early 60's ,after Buddy died + just before The Beatles & puberty kicked in )
These days, Holly  reminds me of Short Trousers:Chilblains (whatever happened to them? when I Lived In A Cardboard Box In The Middle Of The Road, some nights,they were all I had to keep me warm......):Being in love with Anne Haw (what A name!)who sat in the desk in front of me at Saint Mary's Primary School (i had the "hots" for her in a very pre-puberty/Catholic way):Rugby League:National Health Service glasses (those wee ones like John Lennon wore): etc etc.
ah Nostalgia!
As I lost my religion, sat in Confession , I didn't hear Latin no more ,the voice from that old rugged cross  was   Buddy Holly & His Chirping Crickets !
Anyway, out at the end June is this album of Holly covers.Featuring Lou Reed;Nick Lowe;Paul McCartney:My Morning Jacket:The Black Keys (above);Pattie Smith;Fiona Apple ;Julia Casablanca: & many more.Here are Florence & The Machine singing "Not Fade Away".

My Best Wishes To The Teachers who are having the first of their one day strikes next Thursday I was an NUT rep in Bradford in the mid-1980s when that Evil old whore Maggie Thatcher   (spit)was La Maîtresse Principale. Ah Nostalgie!


hebweb hebden bridge

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Why did the Hebden Bridge chicken cross the road?

This Is A Sepia Saturday Post

Hey Folks! It's my Aunty Brenda again! [2nd right] .This photo she labeled "Weekend Camp".I'm guessing wildly but I think it's in Essex (where she was at college) Maybe late 20's \Early 30's? A time when England still had an Empire & people rehearsed by putting on uniforms & prepare for another invasion.
I am currently reading "The Resurrectionist" by James Bradley. Interesting reading.I quote this about when the Brits first arrived in Australia and how they appeared to The Locals....
"'They thought us spirits once' he says,not turning in his saddle 'they took the colour of our skin for the pallor of the dead and imagined us their ancestors,lost and wandering in the living world once more."
My mind turned to Iraq+Afganistan
And So It Goes........................
I have created a new blog this week.With Inevitable  originality , I am calling it HEBDEN BRIDGE. You are welcome to visit it.I don't know if anything will come of it.I would like,eventually ,it to be as good as Joanne Casey's I Have Seen The Whole Of The Internet .She searches the Internet for interesting,quirky,amusing items & reposts them in one nice place.I would wish to do the same albeit specific to my hometown.
I live in Hebden Bridge.But,despite mentioning Hebden hundreds of times this blog,it  doesn't seem  to have touched the local internet-radar.For example ,if you visit Chris Radcliffe's hebdenbridge.co.uk  local "Blogs & Columns" you wont find my blog.
As I move beyond Hebden Bridge (Im thinking of my semi-move to Italy) I would like my vanity & fascination with Hebden seen just a little bit more........
So the idea is to have a separate blog.One that Google will recognize.Showing the quirky side of a quite particular place.Ideally.Eventually.Hopefully .it would be nice if ,whenever someone includes  the term "Hebden Bridge" in their Google Search,one of my alternative Hebden Bridge stories will be in the top ten results. Maybe it will one day..although,in the great scheme of things W.T.F.!
Hebden Bridge was a dead on its feet Yorkshire mill town in the 1960's.Then the hippies moved in.The place is now the Islington of the North.We have a split community.We locals found ourselves  aboriginals .....our  culture dismissed by trendy articulate middle class Southerners.[ a.k.a Bourgeoisie]
If you think I'm exaggerating ,check out  the movie Shed Your Tears And Walk Away[2011] About a split community & how Hebden Bridge has one of the highest teenage suicide rates in Britain.
The local trendy Orange Book liberalz are so articulate that  their alien  culture just drowns out the indigenous  community.
And So It Goes...............
Ironically+ Hypocritically ! I was drinking posh coffee in Hebden this morning with Shelley (over from Ireland).
'Helping her & Mick Promote their business in Italy. Today,we set up new facebook & twitter pages.She told me that ,a week on Sunday, they are placing a 4 week national advert in The Observer .It all looks good & I am happy to help.Watch this space.

A poptastic music video shot in Hebden Bridge. in 1986 Interestingly enough,me&cath moved into Hebden from Halifax in April 1985.But (before you ask!)That aint me on the Space-Hopper!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

it only rained a little bit!

Yesterday was The Hebden Bridge Handmade Parade:2011.
here are my photos.



http://www.hebdenbridge.co.uk/blogosphere/index.html
HEBDEN BRIDGE WEB
Chris Ratcliffe,pennine pens
HEBWEB
Hebden Royd Town Council."Hebden Bridge".

Thursday, June 09, 2011

raining on our parade?

Here is a still from a 1924 black&white silent movie of The Hebden Bridge Carnival.Click Here to Watch It.
Over the past 4 years it has morphed into The Hebden Bridge  Handmade Parade.
The weather forecast for this year's parade on Saturday isn't that clever. 11 15 degrees & rain!Keep your fingers crossed that it ain't so!

2009

I will add my photos from this year's Parade here over the weekend.In the meantime here are My photos from 2010 & 2009
This Is A Sepia Saturday Post.
I heard from Leanne (left) this week.We worked together a few moons ago in Halifax.She now lives +works in the Deep South.
She & other   good people from Barnsley Social Services are taking part in
The Barnsley Kilimanjaro Charity Trek 2011 helping to raise money for a local Hospice.Good Luck To All Concerned.
For my music this week I was going sneak in Dylan singing  about being
"I’m ready to go anywhere, I’m ready for to fade
Into my own parade, cast your dancing spell my way
I promise to go under it....................."
Until I Saw This Rather Groovy Parody...........

2010

Finally,Some Sepia Poetry..............
 In the drinking-well
(Which the plumber built her)
Aunt Eliza fell–
We must buy a filter.
***
Little Willie, in the best of sashes,
Fell in the fire and was burned to ashes.
By and by the room grew chilly,
But no one liked to poke up Willie.
***
“There’s been an accident,” they said,
“Your servant’s cut in half; he’s dead!”
“Indeed!” said Mr. Jones, “and please
Send me the half that’s got my keys.”
***
Father heard his children scream
So he threw them in the stream
Saying, as he drowned the third,
"Children should be seen, not heard!"
update

Friday, June 03, 2011

the laughing victorians

[Don,I got an email this afternoon telling me PJ Harvey plays The ManchesterAcademy2 in September.we are thinking of going.You&Margaret interested/available? I will email details in due course.]

Do you fancy doing a little Market Research for me? This website appeared on the web about 24 hours ago.It's more-or-less finished, but it needs a bit of tweaking in terms of colour/font/layout etc.I would appreciate anyone taking a look & giving some critical feedback.(truly) how do you think it looks?Dont Worry! I didn't do it so you wont hurt my feelings! 
You might know I bought a small/cheap place in Italy.Well Mick & Shelley (see website) are starting a business there in the splendid Abruzzo Region..Painting:Photography:Creative Writing Residential Workshops.(They already have a Painter from Hebden Bridge on board to deliver some Courses).I said I will help a little .Both with the courses themselves (I will be paid a salary for this) Also, out of the kindness of my Heart, I am organizing advertising;promotion & suchlike.It's kinda nice because it ties in with my Abruzzo Caper and I am not investing/risking any of my own monies in the venture.Let Me Know Your Thoughts.
This Week's suggested theme at Sepia Saturday is 'Trains' but I don't really have any old photos with them featured.The nearest is this one of my son Chris in The Dominican Republic when he was wee.

Instead.Consider this............ 
When Joseph-Nicephore Niepce took the first photograph in 1828, his photographic plate required an exposure of eight hours. That exposure time was drastically reduced across the course of the nineteenth century, so that by the 1890s the Collodion process had cut exposure times to two or three seconds.
Nevertheless, a three second exposure meant that subjects had to stand very still to avoid being blurred, and holding a smile for that period was tricky. As a result, we have a tendency to see our Victorian ancestors as even more formal and stern than they might have been.Retronaut
see more photos here & here
LA VITA-HOLIDAY WORKSHOP EXPERIENCES

*** **
On the other hand............ This is clever — in 1974 Cecil Slemp invented shoes with reversed soles, to leave footprints that point in the opposite direction.
So now your bloody tracks will lead to the murder scene.Of course,one year later, Bob Dylan released the album!
*** **





"

"Train" is mentioned (somewhere!) in the  lyrics of the video below.
"If the clouds don’t drop and the train don’t stop........."Bob Dylan:Basement Tapes

POSTSCRIPT in this old post I tell you how I am related to George Stevenson the very famous Victorian railway geezer! They even have a statue of him outside Euston Station in London.Although,as I recall, he's not even smiling ......



Saturday, May 21, 2011

KAZ



[above:outside a junk shop in Lanciano]
Can I point you in the direction of the Koast to Koast Kaz Fund.It's a sponsorship journey through Northern England in memory of Kaz. who died in March.Money raised  by blog following fan Rodger will go to the Ovarian Cancer Charity.Please give here if you can.
Kaz was a Lovely Liverpool Lass  (+ Everton supporter) who lived in Manchester & was a daily commentator here.,back in the day.Sail On Beautiful Lady.
I am now back in Hebden Bridge..I flew back into Leeds Bradford Airport at 3pm on Thursday.By 8pm Me & Cathy were sat in Bury Met watching The Fairports [[my photos:] A jet-setting Rock N Roll lifestyle non? Thanks To Don & Margaret.
I'm very tired.Apologies to Ex-Cappo Martin & those at the hammam.I was due to go to Tony Ts Birthday meal late last night..but far too knackered.
Work progresses on my place in Abruzzo
.But so much still to do.I seemed overwhelming at times . View Some Of My Photos Thunder in the Mountains over last weekend  forced me to stay inside and work.I stayed 4 nights  in the house .I want to get to a stage where it is fit for friends (eg Phil The Ex-Fireman) to be able to come over and help......but until the basics are in place I wouldn't want them to have to stay in a total tip.It's nearly ready to invite them over.Me & several people should be going over next month.
The village is very quiet.I found it quite spooky staying on my own there.I was alone for 90% of the time.Although can I thank Sora for feeding me one day (the best Dutch Risotto I have ever tasted!:).Sora is staying 3 weeks at Iona's house in the village.
I also met up with Mick Goggins& his his new squeeze Shelley.
I spent the best part of Wednesday in Lanciano sorting out paperwork .A special thanks to Massimo at the Bank for ,with great patience,walking me through the dark art of Italian Internet Banking.Also to Piero who explained & sorted  my Water,Electric & Council paperwork.Both are good teachers!
here are a few photos I took this time in Italy.

It's Bob Dylan's 70th Birthday next week.Out of respect for His Bobness, here is a video I took in Hebden Bridge at the recent anti-royalist street party.A band (i know not who) sing the opening riffs of 'All Along The Watchtower.''












P.S. Don.I bought a copy today of "Grateful Dead:Broadcasting Live" DVD if you don't have, I will runoff copies.We watched it tonight (2 discs) Rather suburb! A stunning "Knocking On Heaven's Door".
Finally.I just found this video on Youtube. It was posted 3 days ago. I minute of ".....the only known (existing) professionally filmed Sandy Denny footage with Fairport Convention...."Enjoy & Weep.
Finally............I found this rather strange carnival video from the village in which my house is ! Check the video here
It's an Isolated mountain region.Cut-off historically from the rest of Italy.Frankly, it shows that here...........!
Shot  in March this year.............looks like some outakes from  The Wickerman
P.S. watch the News over the next couple of weeks.Italy is about to come the next Southern European country to go belly-up financially. Remember.You heard it first here!
Shelley-Anne Crawford.Sora van Brummelen
Piero Nasuti

Friday, April 15, 2011

"MARJORYS BIRTHDAY PARTY AT BIRCHLEA 1932 LEVEN"

This is a Sepia Saturday post.
I've mentioned My Mum often enough here ( e.g.)
  Here is a photo I found (while clearing out the attic this week) of her Birthday Party ..
My Mum always spoke of her childhood as a lonely desert of a place,.My grandmother had died in childbirth.My grandad (pictured here, top/middle) was a sailor ,away from home & who had little to do with my Mum.She spent her childhood in the care of aunties in Fife & Edinburgh.She thought it a lonely existence I think.
All the more strange, then, to see this photo.It must have been her 6th birthday .Here she is , right in the middle with cake+doll.All those people around her!Even her dad!Although, I dont recognize anybody else in it.Maybe a school affair?Was "Birchlea" a school? I just dont know........... 
Maybe this is the opposite of  last week's post ?Just another way of "covering things up"? The camera never lies? Maybe this was just staged - managed? A cunning ploy to convince her she wasn't  really alone?Am I being cynical? I'm sure ,objectively , it was more complicated than that..................
One thing for sure........most of the photos I have of her childhood , she appears clutching a doll of some kind.





photos in  Halifax tonight . Tracy's Leaving Do . A Special Thanks to Nick & Dave for arranging the evening for us all+ making it all possible......

Friday, December 31, 2010

who am I when there is a sea?

A raindrop,dripping from a cloud,
Was ashamed when it saw the sea.
'Who am I when there is a sea?' it said.
When it saw itself with the eye of humility,
A shell nurtured it in its embrace.
They say that toddlers often enjoy playing more with the box the Christmas present came in rather than the present itself! Not so Me. Before Christmas , I bought myself the present of a negative scanner from the new Aldi's thats just opened next door to The Rochdale Hammam.I was royally pissed -off when I opened the box on Christmas Day to find it empty.
Yesterday I returned to complain.I now have the contents!
The first old negative ( 4x4 inches)I scanned was the above.It gave me quite a jolt.I think it was taken in Perth,Scotland.Late 1880's/early 1890's? I have never seen a photo before of my Great-Grandmother, but it must be her, she looks so much like My Mum  that its a bit disturbing.given the stern look on her face.
This is a Sepia Saturday Post.



My Thanks to Labour Councillor Bob Piper for these nice words.
+I Want To Send Some New Year Love To The Beautiful KAZ.
In Manchester.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

A heart needs a home

Theme Thursday test

The Unthanks perform Robert Wyatt's 'Dondestan' (with clogs dance).
London, Union Chapel - December 8th, 2010

Palestine's a country / or at least used to be.
Palestine's a country / or at least used to be.
Felahin, refugee (Kurdistan similarly)
need something to build on / rather like the rest of us.
Palestine's a country / or at least used to be.
Palestine's a country / or at least used to be.
Felahin, refugee (deportees similarly)
need something to build on / rather like the rest of us got

Its just a year ago that we saw The Unthanks at the  Hebden Bridge Trades Club [ my photos].. This week I booked my tickets to see them play Manchester Cathedral on 30th April.
Becky Unthanks (2nd clog dancer from the right) although born in  Northumberland , now lives less than a mile from my house in Hebden Bridge.I see her shopping in the CO-Op & suchlike........
Halifax born Dominic Rivon threw out a challenge this week on his blog Choose one question from All Soul's College exam paper & write a blog post on it.
I have picked..................... Is exile always a misfortune ?

"Exile" might usually be seen as a geographical idea. To live apart.It's also tied in with a feeling of banishment . The majority have exile trust upon them. Those who choose exile do so out of circumstance.
I guess my Dad's life could have been described as one of "Exile".Living in Britain because he couldn't return return to his home in Poland.I am sure he saw this as his total misfortune.
[Incidentally , I am looking forword to seeing the new Peter Weir film The Way Back based around the life of
Sławomir Rawicz
born in Eastern Poland near my dad & like him, conscripted into the invading Soviet army, in 1939 from which both deserted and fled through the World to escape.]
The problem with this geographical exile is that truth & fact can become hidden\lost & incomprehensive in the exile's new home. It difficult to pass the legacy on..........I , for example, still don't fully understand how my Dad got from "A" to "B".I know he escaped Poland. I know he traveled via South Africa.I know he ended up in Scotland to join the Free Polish Airforce. But I don't know how this was done. I guess I never will...............
My dad hated his exile. Maybe if you chose it yourself it is different.? The World is full of happy expectant migrants Sailing to "New Worlds".in the hope of a better life.I,m sure it's not always a misfortune. The misfortune is not having a choose in one's life.................
How odd , at this point I was going to quote something Bryce Taylor said to me once.
" To Have True Freedom You Must Always Have 3 Alternative Options In Any Decision ". You Are Not Free If You Have No Alternative.........
I studied under Bryce when doing a 2 year Transpersonal Diploma with Oasis Human Relations. He had a very powerful influence on me.I lost touch after I left in 1996.It's a measure of my exile from him that I only tonight learned just now of his death in March via the Oasis
facebook page.
How strange ,reading his obituary  in The Yorkshire Post I found out things I never knew about him.He was born in Rochdale and he was a "keen photographer, gardener and Bob Dylan aficionado."
He was full of Power............To Say I liked the man would be wrong.But I respected his power & insight. He Saw me better than I saw myself (which was a worry !) bryce was one of the most influential people in my life.It is strange now to know of my exile from him.............He changed my life is ways I still have to discover.

His position was ,maybe, that We are all in exile.but we have the fortune to find our way home.
The facebook site carries photos of tree planting ceremonies to him on October 20th in Boston Spa,Yorkshire & Boston Massachusetts ( GRLI GA).Below a photo of Bryce (holding a carpet someone thought looked like a tree stump) & me.on the grass, in exile............
Another final point.You might find yourself in Exile and never need to move an inch! You stay still & the World changes around you.The current political & economic climate a case in point.Maybe it's not a geographical thing at all......................

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Polaroid Photo taken (By My Mum?By My Dad?) on the morning of 6th July 1977.It's in the Garden of my parents house in Halifax.
It must have been early morning.My Dad later would drive me & my Mum to The University of Lancaster to a degree awards.I was to recieve my Bachelor of Education Gong..
I had been out drinking & smoking the previous night & was a little hungover.The photo almost seems to mirror my inner-state.Digs those trippy flowers!
I remember being very proud of myself. The Duchess of Kent did the awarding.The first & only member of The Royal Family I have met,shaken hands with & spoken too.She died 13 months later from a brain tumour.She seemed very nice
A month after this photo was taken I moved to live in The East End of London to begin my teaching.
This is a Sepia Saturday post.

Friday, July 16, 2010

pretending to board a ship

This is a Sepia Saturday post.
A photo of Me.Taken by My Mum?Leith Docks.Early 1960s.
I've always had trouble with  naff jackets! No taste at all! This one must have been during my "Biggles Phase"?

Saturday, April 03, 2010

how I lost my innocence & virginity on the roof of St.Paul's Cathedral Choirboys School.....

This is an Easter Tale of sorts.I moved  for a year to London on April 1st 1971
Today I've been looking at and uploading some of my  dusty personal photos  to a  the facebook site called  YHA Carter Lane. It's  very small (23 members)but an  active site.My mind has been jogged!
[by the way,the Japanese Lady in this tale is on the left, in green,.in this first snapshot.I had been sleeping-in late on my rooftop room.They dragged me out of bed for this photo! I still look half asleep!]
Carter Lane Youth Hostel is in The City Of London ."The City" is an island within the rest of London.It has it's own Police Force.It's where the Law Courts & The Fleet Street Press were housed.At weekends it closed down.My local pub was where Dickins did a spot of scribbling.....[think The Vatican inside of  Rome]. All Pre-Wapping.:Pre-Thatcher.
Carter Lane is  just opposite St Paul's Cathedral .The Building was St Paul's Choir School ( former pupils include  Jimmy Edwards,& Walter de la Mare)
 In  May 1967.The Old School closed and...........
".Gone forever was the famous "crocodile" of boys crossing from Carter Lane to the cathedral at service time with the head chorister holding up the traffic."................  
It reopened soon afterwards as a Youth Hostel
It took me months to get used to The Cathedral bells ringing every 15 minutes [even throughout the night!].when I  first worked there as a 19 year old in 1971.I was an Assistant Warden.
It was the first time I had lived away from home.I cant remember the reason, but i seemed to have 2 rooms to sleep in.[One  led onto the building's roof.].
It was an important time in my life. I lost my virginity & had an intense & longish  relationship with a Japanese Lady who was 4 years older than me (it was the time that John & Yoko were hitting the headlines~.all very Cool+Hip  for me ).
It was also in Carter Lane that I started smoking Dope for the first time.I was introduced to Neil Young & spent many a hot summer's night dreaming  on the roof, listening to his music.
So happy memories.Also I grew up some.The Japanese Lady became pregnant by me.She wanted an abortion.I didnt.She won.We (as they say) split. The dream turned sour but, from this distance of time, the good memories far out way the bad.Ah! Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.........Finally.You will notice that I do not mention The Japanese Lady's name here.That's not me being diplomatic (after all this time,what would that matter?) The reason is I cannot remember it!
I do remember that her friend (the Japanese Lady on the right of the first snapshot) was called Yoko! Say's It All I Guess!



After this I returned to Yorkshire.I went back down to London's East End 8 years later as a Teacher.That is another story for another time.Although, I do talk already about it slightly  here.It's quite a different, harsher, experience.