How COVID-19 has intensified inequalities in Northern England This week, IPPR North’s report The State of the North has confirmed what many Northerners have known since the height of Thatcher’s term in office. With Brexit and COVID-19, the North-South divide has grown dramatically – to a point that the gap between South East England and […]Read More A Northern Wake-Up Call: IPPR North Report Confirms Westminster Failings
Quite a lot to be honest! Imagine a world without Northern England. It would be a dull place devoid of The Beatles, iconic suspension bridges, daft footballers, and railway lines. Prior to the late 1970s, we were the manufacturing heart of the world. We built bridges, ships, made cutlery and built the world its locomotives […]Read More What Has the North Done For Us?
If you have any sense at this moment in time, the answer should be ‘No’ The list of places associated with disreputable goings-on with present and previous Conservative governments have grown in the last five years. There are now enough places to muster a Best of British coach tour. Till last week, we had a […]Read More Can You Get From Westminster to Durham By Bus?
The cheap yet slow way of getting from Newcastle-upon-Tyne to London Road and rail competition, whether private car versus train or scheduled coach versus train is far from new. The private car was, and remains, a threat to the viability of any communal transport options due to its convenience and perceived economy. The opening of […]Read More A Lost Train to London: The Highwayman
Northern franchise taken over by DfT as Operator of Last Resort from the 01 March After several rumours and persistent lobbying by Northern English political figures in the last six months, it was announced today that Arriva lost its Northern rail franchise. Under the Anglo-German company’s tenure, the rail franchise was dogged by poor service, […]Read More Northern Nationalised: Franchise Transfers from Arriva Rail North to DfT
Another tight performance from Westoe Brass Band After being forced to choose from singers dressed as yellow ducks or unicorns, or ice-based pratfalls, the people of Saddleworth (and Boarshurst Silver Band’s avid streaming audience) were saved from such misfortune last night. At 7pm, Westoe Brass Band began the 2020 season of concerts in style.Read More Westoe Brass Band: Sunday Brass at the Boarshurst Band Club, 19 January 2020
Or: is the Grayling Curse to blame for Northern’s woes? The rail franchising system is dead. Long live the rail franchising system. In the last year, we have seen a recasting of the rail franchising system in favour of management contracts. Since 1994, rail franchises in Great Britain have mirrored former British Rail profit centres, […]Read More Should Northern Rail Be Nationalised? Be Careful What You Wish For
East of the M60 EXCLUSIVE: Nodding Donkeys become beautiful bi-modes with revolutionary technology 10-car Pacers set for DDA compliant overhaul; New breed of Nodding Donkeys go electric. Set to carry on for a longer period of time than the UK’s Brexit negotiations is the fate of Northern’s Pacer units. Due to disability legislation, the much-maligned […]Read More Packed Pacer Problem Solved for 2019 Deadline
South Shields band kicks off 2019 season of Boarshurst concerts in style Only three weeks ago, Boarshurst Band Club finished off its 2018 season of Sunday Brass nights in style with the Friends of Music For Youth Brass Band. That concert got us on a high for the 2019 programme, which has a tasty selection […]Read More Westoe Brass Band: Sunday Brass at the Boarshurst Band Club
Ten “must-listen to” cover versions by Sunderland’s finest musical export Hagiographies of punk and new wave music in Northern England seldom breach the Standedge Tunnel’s Diggle end. Lazily, history tells us about the Buzzcocks, Joy Division, Slaughter and the Dogs, and the Sex Pistols’ gig at the Lesser Free Trade Hall. Fewer column inches are devoted […]Read More The Greatest Cover Versions by The Toy Dolls: The Not So Perfect Ten