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Games We Played In The Past

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Without wifi and electricity we may need to remember all those games we played as kids.

Cannon with a tin can and lolly sticks.

Skipping games that even the lads joined in.

Jacks

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Football ... endless games of football on 20 acres. These matches would last for hours and hours with lads arriving to join in and with others leaving for some 'nosebag' at home; they would return after being fed. There'd often be dozens per side. Oh, and the ball was a leather caser not one of those namby-pamby lightweight plakka jobs favoured by soft southerners.

I remember a game (but not its name) where a couple of lads would lean against a wall, more lads would join them until there was a line of them bent-double and holding onto the lad in front. Others would repeat this move but on top of the first group; more would join but on top of the second stack, and so on. The aim was to produce a high stacked snake of lads without the pile collapsing.

Obviously, 'split-the-kipper'. Probably the most popular game after footy. We all had knives back then, the most common type was a cheap pressed folding knife with a three or four inch blade and a handle covered in a Fablon type material used to ape Tortoiseshell.

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Football ... endless games of football on 20 acres. These matches would last for hours and hours with lads arriving to join in and with others leaving for some 'nosebag' at home; they would return after being fed. There'd often be dozens per side. Oh, and the ball was a leather caser not one of those namby-pamby lightweight plakka jobs favoured by soft southerners.

I remember a game (but not its name) where a couple of lads would lean against a wall, more lads would join them until there was a line of them bent-double and holding onto the lad in front. Others would repeat this move but on top of the first group; more would join but on top of the second stack, and so on. The aim was to produce a high stacked snake of lads without the pile collapsing.

Obviously, 'split-the-kipper'. Probably the most popular game after footy. We all had knives back then, the most common type was a cheap pressed folding knife with a three or four inch blade and a handle covered in a Fablon type material used to ape Tortoiseshell.

I remember a game (but not its name) where a couple of lads would lean against a wall, more lads would join them until there was a line of them bent-double and holding onto the lad in front. Others would repeat this move but on top of the first group; more would join but on top of the second stack, and so on. The aim was to produce a high stacked snake of lads without the pile collapsing.

If it's the same one as I'm thinking it was called Moont-the-Cuddy, Symptoms, we used to play it as well.

Edited by keith lockey

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The grass was cut on the green and we would collect the cuttings.

Raiding others collections when and if the occasion arrived.

What simple pleasures.

Secret messages knocked on walls.

Walking outside from one window to another.

Opencast playtime. Born slippy

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Spot on Keith ... it was "Moont-the-Cuddy".

Another game was tobogganing down pitheaps on a piece of Ballatta belting ... for our younger viewers Ballatta was the rubberised belting from pit conveyor belts. There were often dozens of yards of the stuff mixed/buried in the spoil on the pitheaps; a section about 2'6" long would be cut with our trusty pocket knives (see earlier post). We'd climb to the top of the heap, sit on the Ballatta and launch ourselves down the bumpy slope, thus ensuring a bruised ar*e. We sometimes played at Doctor Pit but mainly at Costain's opencast site - just over the fence from 20 acres. It's amazing that this fence was just a 4 foot high chestnut pailing job and so easy to get over!!! These modern skeleton bobsleigh bods have it so, so easy.

Edited by Symptoms

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I remember a game (but not its name) where a couple of lads would lean against a wall, more lads would join them until there was a line of them bent-double and holding onto the lad in front. Others would repeat this move but on top of the first group; more would join but on top of the second stack, and so on. The aim was to produce a high stacked snake of lads without the pile collapsing.

If it's the same one as I'm thinking it was called Moont-the-Cuddy, Symptoms, we used to play it as well.

Only picture I can find for Moont-the-Cuddy is on the British Library site under the Yorkshire name of - Riagamajee.

post-3031-0-77101800-1373205908_thumb.pn

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Happy days. There were a few games we used to play - British Bulldog, Let the Bunnies Out!!! There was one where the small boy would climb on the back of a bigger boy and proceed to pull a similarly mounted opponent to the ground. (Can't remember the name of that one.) Then there was muggies - pottsies - with a hole dug in the ground. (Remember Penkers - the steel marbles.)

I remember me and Jim Hunter went raiding a garden for apples. We were hidden behind a tree waiting for the light to go off when all of a sudden a gang of four lads came round the corner with the same idea. The owner saw them and came running out. They legged it and we followed. They thought we were chasing them until we passed them at the top of the street. It was like Benny Hill meets the Keystone Cops and Mack Sennett. But the one thing I remember is there was no malice in anything we did; it was just mischief and adventure with no one getting harmed.

Edited by keith lockey

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Happy days. There were a few games we used to play - British Bulldog, Let the Bunnies Out!!! There was one where the small boy would climb on the back of a bigger boy and proceed to pull a similarly mounted opponent to the ground. (Can't remember the name of that one.) Then there was muggies - pottsies - with a hole dug in the ground. (Remember Penkers - the steel marbles.)

I remember me and Jim Hunter went raiding a garden for apples. We were hidden behind a tree waiting for the light to go off when all of a sudden a gang of four lads came round the corner with the same idea. The owner saw them and came running out. They legged it and we followed. They thought we were chasing them until we passed them at the top of the street. It was like Benny Hill meets the Keystone Cops and Mack Sennett. But the one thing I remember is there was no malice in anything we did; it was just mischief and adventure with no one getting harmed.

Remember mounting a large boy and getting puled off but like you no idea what perverted game it was called.

Penkers - afraid wor Geordie lost them all in doon a Barrington row!

'Let the bunnies out' - never heard of it so never played it.

Apples - too numerous to go through them all, but seem to recall one of the easiest, and best, was at the top of Melrose Terrace, across from where the YMCA used to be. There is a large semi and the garden wall, on your way through to what is now Melrose Court, aided the picking of apples from the apple tree. If the good people that supplied us hungry urchins with our five-a-day came out you could easily scarper (is that word for Maggies Caht Central Pitmatic/Dialect words topics) doon Melrose Terrace and hide in any back yard or garden.

Blind man's bluff - me brothers blindfolded me in Coquetdale Place and they went to the station for a couple of hours. Bumped into every gate and wall in Fontburn Road. Me mother was furious but they enjoyed it, b*$%*r#S.

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Eggs - I can remember that fighting game but not it's name.

Penkers – big games of marbles (glassers) played at the back of Westridge School on that lawned area which soon turned to hard impacted earth .... the area is still visible on Google Earth but now appears to have a couple of curved hedges. The beaten earth was good to play on as the muggies 'ran true' and the 'cup' was easily dug/shaped with our trusty pocket knives. Apparently, the steel penkers were from the conveyor-belt bearings down the pit ... for our younger viewers penkers were steel ball-bearings about 1†(25mm) dia. .... they must have been salvaged by pitmen for their sons.

Nicking apples – this must have had a local name but I can't recall what it was (elsewhere in the country it was known as scrumping but we didn't call it that). We were 'top-end' lads so our favourite orchards to go on raiding parties to were Jimmy Millne's (behind his house on Front Street) and the Priest's one behind the Rectory (in Catholic Row). Jimmy had a large Alsatian dog which used to chase us around the orchard and we often had to leap over the stone wall to escape its nashers – this orchard only had apples. The boss Priest was a guy in a brown habit (he may have been a monk of some sort) and his orchard had apples, plums, pears and gooseberries. My Dad was friendly with this Priest and would often have a drink with him, either in the Red Lion or a snifter of Drambuie in the Rectory. I've been onto Google Street View/Maps but can't locate the orchard in Catholic Row but reckon it's where that new church is. Also the Priest's front door is blocked-up and pebble-dashed.

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We used to call nicking apples "raiding". We attempted one such sortie on Pringles Farm at the top of Halfpenny Woods but something came hurtling through the long grass at us and we scarpered.

Another game we played was "Split the Kipper". This involved a throwing knife and nerves of steel. The idea being to throw the knife in the ground so that your opponent had to stretch his legs apart. Brenda Holland actually stuck me in the shins once. (I think the Americans call it Numblety-peg or something.

Edited by keith lockey

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Back then there always was a ton of stuff to keep us busy/active/interested all the time; I'm not sure that youngsters these days have as many healthy pastime choices as we did. We've all posted here previously of the pastimes we got involved with as kids and hinted at, in addition to the activities we did ourselves, the organised stuff that was available.

Westridge had a youth club (next to the caretaker's house and the building seems to still exist ... Google Maps) and was open every evening. To be a member you had to do an activity class and obviously footy was the most popular with the class coached by Danny Douglas and on three nights per week; there was metalwork (taken by Taffy Williams) and woodwork in the school workshops. I remember canoe making in woodwork and one year a Mirror Dingy was built; a land-yacht and go-karts were built in metalwork. Once the classes were finished we'd go the the club building for drinks (soft), crisps, chocky, snouts around the back, and the girls ... lots of girls. That was three nights a week for me.

I was in the Scouts (1st Bedlington) based at the Scout Hall on Ridge Terrace (just opposite the Primary School I attended as a nipper) and this was a couple of nights a week. Willy Hall was the Scout Master and I think he built the Scout Hall before WW2 – it was a great facility with a double-fronted building at the front serving as offices, shop, coffee bar; an assembly hall at the rear with a stage, parallel bars on the walls, basketball hoops, gymnastic hoops and other ropes hanging from the ceiling, vaulting horse, etc; a courtyard at the back surrounded with outbuilding/workshops. We'd chop sticks to sell around the doors to folk for fire lighting and to raise funds, we learnt how to fight with wooden staffs and get the badge, sing songs in the hall, British Bulldog and Murder Ball in the hall with all the gym equipment out. Weekends we'd camp the 1st Bedlington's own Humford Hollow campsite ... chopping/sawing wood for fires, making bread with no yeast, collecting berries, setting snares for bunnies, climbing trees, building aerial walkways with ropes through the tops of the trees. I recall a whole gang of us had been volunteered by Willy to dig out this enormous tree stump and its roots as part of a site clearing project but the thing was just too big and we'd been at it for a couple of days, so Willy Hall got a mate of his from either the pit or Costains open-cast to bring some explosives to shift the thing. We all stood around and watched as this guy placed his charges and blasted it out the ground – we got covered in falling dirt and wood, it's amazing nobody was killed! Once a year we'd go to the Scout/Guide camp at the back of Gosforth Park for a long weekend jamboree.

Obviously, Saturday up to the Toon for the footy.

When not out the house, every spare minute was taken up doing something and we all had hobbies at home. I loved electro-magnetism so was always making stuff like morse-buzzers, intercom systems to my mate who live next door, shock apparatus. My Dad used to get half-used reels of thin cotton-insulated copper wire from a pal for my experiments and there was always the lenghts of cap wire to be found mixed in the coal. I also spent what spare time I had left with my Meccano set.

The only thing that cost any money was going to the match at St James.

Maybe parents today are sh*t scared to let their ankle-biters out unsupervised for fear of them being lifted by kiddy fidlers but there were just as many monsters back then preying on youngsters (statistical fact!!!). It's just that the national news of missing/murdered kids wasn't reported fully before the Moors Murders so there was a view that it was safe for kids to be out; now the oppositeis true. The other factor is that there aren't the same number of organised places for kids to go to these days and anyway, they now seemed glued to games consoles.

Edited by Symptoms

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When I was about fifteen I became interested in archery. I bought a bow, quiver and arrows. (McDermotts at Ashington) and wanted to join a club. Unfortunately there was none around here. So what I used to do was stand in the middle of the green down Stead Lane, opposite the cottages, and loose arrows at a man-made target. This would be in the early seventies. Police cars used to go by but not one of them stopped and approached me. I look back in amazement at what I did and wonder why I was never picked up by the fuzz - until someone told me about a 'by-law' about the right to practice archery - Henry VIII - I believe. But can you imagine someone doing that now!!!

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When I was about fifteen I became interested in archery. I bought a bow, quiver and arrows. (McDermotts at Ashington) and wanted to join a club. Unfortunately there was none around here. So what I used to do was stand in the middle of the green down Stead Lane, opposite the cottages, and loose arrows at a man-made target. This would be in the early seventies. Police cars used to go by but not one of them stopped and approached me. I look back in amazement at what I did and wonder why I was never picked up by the fuzz - until someone told me about a 'by-law' about the right to practice archery - Henry VIII - I believe. But can you imagine someone doing that now!!!

In 1628/9 the 1515 Statute of Henry VIII requiring archery practice was reinforced and in 1633 Charles I issued yet another new order; for the use of bows in the Trained Bands, with training to be provided by a master bowman.

Indeed, a new company of pikemen also armed with bows (the 'double-armed man') was formed in Herefordshire as late as in 1642.

Henry VIII started a number of sporting archery groups – protecting them against prosecution from accidentally shooting with 'ye bowe and arrowe' anyone unfortunate enough to be passing by! This was termed as 'The King's Pardon'.

It is extremely doubtful that 'The Kings Pardon' still applies today!

These days only a young Hoodie called Robin would get away with it!

A Statue imposed by King Henry VIII and written by the King in the 6th year of his reign (1515) was an amended, more specifically detailed version to replace an earlier Royal Statute of 1363:

Item: Whether the Kinges subjectes, not lame nor having no lawfull impediment, and beinge within the age of XI yeares, excepte Spiritual men, Justices etc. and Barons of the Exchequer, use shoting on longe bowes, and have bowe continually in his house, to use himself and that fathers and governours of chyldren teache them to shote, and that bowes and arrowes be bought for chyldren under XVII and above VII yere, by him that has such a chylde in his house, and the Maister maye stoppe it againe of his wages, and after that age he to provideb them himselfe: and who that is founde in defaute, in not having bowes and arrowes by the space of a moneth, to forfayte xiid.. And boyers for everie bowe of ewe, to make two of Elme wiche or othere wood of meane price, and if thei be founde to doe the contrarie, to be committed to warde, by the space of viii daies or more......................................

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That's me, Eggy, Keith of Locksley.

All together now...Robin Hood Robin Hood riding through the glen...Where's my Lincoln green.

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That's me, Eggy, Keith of Locksley.

All together now...Robin Hood Robin Hood riding through the glen...Where's my Lincoln green.

I must get Wilf to visit Locksley hall.

We used to play a word game, cos we had no toys, by switching ninitial letters of well known people and places.

The Sherwood Forest lot made us laugh - Hobin Rood, Jittle Lohn, Maid Marian, and what was that fat bloke in a smock called?

Edited by Eggy1948

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Yeah, bring Wilf, I'll use him for target practice. Here's one of me knocking my shaft.

post-2953-0-00866500-1373374746_thumb.jp

Edited by keith lockey

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Friar Tuck was the fat monk in the brown habit.

That boss Catholic Priest I mentioned earlier had the same type of habit as Tuck. Maybe some 'left-footer' (apologies for using this term but we're operating in 60s mode with our memories ... anyway, is it considered to be inappopriate today?) here might be able to shed some light on what order the boss Priest & Tuck belonged to.

KeithL's Right to Bear Bows could be described as his Second Amendment Right.

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Yet!!! Give those Yankees time to snoop on all the dirt of our political masters who'll then be blackmailed, resulting in ye olde Blighty being ceded to the US of A and becoming a new, poor Hillbilly State. The KeithL will then be able to declare his Right to Bear Bows.

Edited by Symptoms

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They've already arrived, Symptoms, look who is pretending to be me!!!

post-2953-0-06588000-1373390882_thumb.jp

I'm all a-quiver!! I better keep a tab on him.

Edited by keith lockey

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Friar Tuck was the fat monk in the brown habit.

That boss Catholic Priest I mentioned earlier had the same type of habit as Tuck. Maybe some 'left-footer' (apologies for using this term but we're operating in 60s mode with our memories ... anyway, is it considered to be inappopriate today?) here might be able to shed some light on what order the boss Priest & Tuck belonged to.

KeithL's Right to Bear Bows could be described as his Second Amendment Right.

Dear Symptoms - either your humour is dryer than mine, or you missed the childish point I was making about the childish games we used to play.

Mixing the initial letters of peoples names up eg. The Merry Men of Sherwood were:-

Robin Hood = Hobin Rood

Little John = Jittle Lohn

Maid Marian = Maid Marian (oh how that made us laugh, age 10)

Friar Tuck = stop playing silly word games and let your natural hormonal instincts take control.

Any way, talking of word games have you every seen that University study that found that our little brain was so clever that even if you mixed up the inner letters of words, the initial letter and last letter staying in the correct position, most people could still read the words. Try these:-

Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.

Some researchers think if you can read these 'mixups' then you have a strange mind :-

fi yuo cna raed tihs, yuo hvae a sgtrane mnid too. Cna yuo raed tihs? Olny 55 plepoe out of 100 can.

i cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno't mtaetr in waht oerdr the ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghi t pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Azanmig huh? yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt! if you can raed tihs forwrad it.

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