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The Friday Five 19.11.21

Published on: 19 Nov 2021

The Friday Five 19.11.21

It's Friday, again. What have we got in store for you today? Read on for a brief history of hosiery in the East Mids, a list of Cumbrian dialect words, the Rat Packer who loves Southend and some stuff about saucy postcards. Oh, and some planning jobs. Mustn't forget those, eh?


Location: Beeston, Nottinghamshire

The job: “This post offers the chance to play a key part in the development of the most exciting major development opportunity in the East Midlands.  Broxtowe is a diverse urban and rural area to the west of Nottingham and home to a wide range of businesses, including leading telecommunication, retail and pharmaceutical companies.

“Our geographical location is advantageous and enables officers to develop by dealing with a wide variety of applications. We want an individual to take a proactive lead to develop creative plans and projects for investment in our area, and work with partners and developers to achieve our ambitious house building plans. You will need to be politically sensitive, a good people manager, have plenty of energy, stamina and creativity.”

Attenborough nature reserve [square]Fun fact: The village of Attenborough, within the Borough of Broxtowe, is home to the Attenborough nature reserve which was opened – you’ve guessed it – by Sir David Attenborough in 1966. He returned in 2005 to open a new nature centre.

The reserve, built around gravel pits, was owned by extraction company Cemex and jointly managed by Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust. In 2019, Cemex announced its intention to sell the site. Fearing it would be lost as a nature reserve, a fundraising drive was set up by Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust which was supported by Sir David and which successfully raised the million pounds required.

So are the reserve and its centre named after the village or the great naturalist and broadcaster? Well, in a sense both, since Sir David can apparently trace his family history back to the village whose name he bears. It is not known whether Clint Eastwood can trace his heritage to the town of Eastwood in the same borough.

Find out more and apply 


Location: Loughborough, Leicestershire

The job: “William Davis Homes is one of the UK’s leading privately-owned housebuilders with land interests predominantly in the East and West Midlands. We have been providing high quality homes for sale for more than 80 years.

“Our land and planning team are looking to appoint a qualified or part qualified town planner to join our team. The role will primarily focus on assisting in securing planning permissions, as well as the discharge of relevant conditions through the development cycle.

“As a company with a strong heritage in identifying and securing strategic land, the role will provide the successful candidate with the opportunity to undertake district-wide land searches, appraise strategic opportunities and manage land interests through the development plan system.”

Stripey socks [square]Fun fact: In the pedestrianised area of Loughborough town centre, just in front of the town hall, is a bronze statue of a portly man dressed in just a fig leaf and a decorated sock that adorns his left leg. Sitting atop a plinth, the man gazes at his sock admiringly.

Designed and made by Scottish sculptor Shona Kinloch, The Sockman was unveiled in 1998 as a symbol of the town’s history as a centre of hosiery manufacture – hosiery being any fabric that is knitted rather than woven. 

From the late 17th-century, woollen manufacturing was a core part of Loughborough’s economy, with many framework knitters making stockings in their own homes, often as entire families. Industrialisation gradually changed the cottage industry and in 1839 the firm of Pagets revolutionised the industry by opening the first steam operated hosiery factory - in Loughborough.

By 1863, some 20 hosiery companies were operating in the town, but steam power was relatively slow to catch on. In 1871 there were merely 74 steam powered hosiery factories in Leicestershire – but that was out of 129 in the whole of Britain.

It was a huge industry. In 1894 the Loughborough firm of Cartwright and Warner employed more than 1,000 people, increasing numbers of them women. Post World War II, however, the industry shrank, with firms moving out of town and into industrial estates. Many of the ‘big’ manufacturers are gone, but Leicestershire remains the centre of Britain’s still quite healthy hosiery industry.

Find out more and apply 


Location: Southend-on-Sea, Essex

The job: “The council is looking to appoint a senior planning officer to deliver a wide variety of planning applications within the borough. As the senior planning officer in a development control team, you will work on a variety of existing projects under the ‘Southend 2050’ transformation plan, as well as other future projects and other strategic developments within the borough. 

"You will be involved with projects which will truly shape the future landscape of Southend and our long-term vision. This will include working on planning applications of all types, together with negotiations, correspondence, appeals and formal enquiries from the public and developers. Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is a unitary authority based in the heart of the town centre, offering traditional seaside living that makes it a great place to live and work.”

Southend seafront [square]Fun fact: Southend-on-Sea is apparently the driest town in the UK, according to research conducted by weather experts at, er, earlier this year. The researchers combed through almost 30 years of Met Office rainfall figures from 1981 to 2010 for 42 UK towns and cities with a population of more than 100,000.

They concluded that Southend averages just 1.65 inches of rainfall and eight wet days a month. This compared to 2.75 inches of rain and ten wet days a month in Bournemouth, Dorset.

Southend, of course, has form as a popular seaside resort, beginning with the opening of its magnificent pier in 1830 (the longest holiday pier in the world at 1.3 miles) and then its growth as a day out destination for holidaying Eastenders from London as working hours became more regulated throughout the 19th century.

Like many seaside towns its popularity waned in the postwar years, but it has nevertheless remained a much-loved location. Indeed, American jazz pianist Buddy Greco, a former member of Frank Sinatra’s notorious ‘Rat Pack’ lived there for more than a decade and only moved out because his landlord wanted his flat back. On leaving, he declared Southend the best place he had ever lived and vowed to return.

In October of this year, the government said that it would grant the town city status in recognition of David Amess, the MP who was cruelly murdered in his Southend constituency office.

Find out more and apply 


Location: Penrith, Cumbria

The job: “We are looking to recruit an experienced planning professional to join our busy development management team, someone who can deliver excellent results and play an integral part of an evolving and innovative council which is forward thinking and embracing new opportunities through technology and transformation.

“Development has a key role to play in achieving the council’s ambitions in regards to sustainable growth, climate change and biodiversity gain. Our planning service is at the forefront of leading this exciting period of change across the district and this post will deal with a variety of important major residential, commercial, employment and tourism proposals, whilst also assisting with the management of the council’s development management function.

“Uniquely placed on the edge of both the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales National Parks., Eden is home to some of Cumbria’s most stunning landscapes and the 2019 Halifax Quality of Life survey rated it as one of the top five places to live in the UK.”

Tractor in Penrith [square]Fun fact: Penrith has its own dialect, a local variation of the Cumbrian dialect spoken in Cumberland, Westmorland and across the north of England. This is, Wikipedia warns, not to be confused with the area’s extinct Celtic language Cumbric (although some elements of this survive in Cumbrian, including the ‘sheep counting’ numerals ‘yan tan tethera’). 

Cumbrian actually has rather more in common with Scots and the two share a common origin in Northumbrian Old English, which was prevalent in the 7th to 10th centuries. This in turn was further shaped by Norwegian settlers and many Old Norse terms survive in the modern dialect, too.

So what words can you expect to hear spoken in Cumbrian/Penrithian? Quite a few of these have seeped into colloquial English.

  • Bevvie: drink (alcoholic)
  • Clarty: messy, muddy
  • Slape: slippery or smooth as in ‘slape back collie’, a border collie with short wiry hair
  • Attercop: spider
  • Biddies: fleas or head lice or old people ‘old biddies’
  • Kecks: trousers/pants or underpants
  • Chunder: vomit
  • Radged: broken, such as ‘radged in the head’
  • Gammerstang: awkward person
  • Gey windy 'appen: very windy
  • Hoyin it doown: teeming it down with rain
  • Nevva evva av a sin owt like it: never ever have I seen anything like it
  • Werst thew of te?:  where are you going
  • Hasta iver deeked a cuddy loup a five bar yat?: have you ever seen a donkey jump a five bar gate?

Find out more and apply 


Location: Huddersfield and surrounds, West Yorkshire

The job: “We are looking to appoint a forward thinking, motivated and organised senior planning officer (x2) to join our majors team. It is a key role within the service and we are seeking a planning professional who is keen to make a significant contribution to the performance and achievements of our development management team. In return, we will offer you the opportunity to deal with a diverse range of urban and rural applications to develop your development management experience in a supportive environment.

“Kirklees is a large metropolitan district authority with ambitious plans for growth and development. From our aspiring regeneration plans for both Huddersfield and Dewsbury to fulfilling the bold housing and employment targets set out within our Kirklees Local Plan (2019), this is an exciting time to join the council’s development management team.”

Old postcard [square]Fun fact: Holmfirth in Kirklees is probably best known as the filming location for long-running BBC sitcom Last of the Summer Wine. But long before this began the town was the centre of, firstly, a burgeoning regional film industry; and secondly, an incredibly successful saucy postcards industry, which continues today.

Both are courtesy of Bamforth & Co. Ltd, started in 1870 by James Bamforth, a portrait photographer. In 1883, Bamforth began to specialise in making lantern slides; in 1898 he started making silent monochrome films with the Riley Brothers of Bradford - Bamford’s knowledge of lantern slides proving invaluable. AS RAB Films, they made 14 short films together over the next three years.

In 1913 Bamford restarted film production and made dozens of films up to 1915, many featuring a character named Winky. For a time, the West Yorkshire film industry actually surpassed that of Hollywood for originality and productivity, it is said. In 1915, Bamforth renamed the company Holmfirth Producing Company and relocated to London.

By now, Bamforth & Co had a successful postcard business, too. For more than 70 years from 1910, this produced a wide range of topographical and tourist postcards. But the firm was best known for its ‘saucy’ seaside postcards which were exported worldwide for sale. The rights to the designs were bought by an Ian Wallace in 2001; in 2010 he relaunched the Bamforth saucy postcard line to mark the 100th anniversary of their original launch.

Find out more and apply 

Image credits | Peter James Sampson, Shutterstock; Rob A Hall, Shutterstock; iStock; ATG Images, Shutterstock; iStock