A Grim North

Musings from a northerner living in the deep south…

Archive for January, 2011

No room at the inn!

Posted by Alan on January 30, 2011

No room at the inn!, originally uploaded by Alan Perryman.

This afternoon I popped back to the Duke of Wellington in Dalston to get some pictures…ready to blog about their Scottish beer festival.

Such is the popularity of cycling in this area, both Sheffield stands were crammed full along with every lamppost within sight!

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Posted in Buildings and Places, Cycling | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Four geese

Posted by Alan on January 24, 2011



Four geese, originally uploaded by Alan Perryman.

I’ve been a bit slack at going through the holiday photos… which gives me an opportunity to bring out this one.

4 Geese slide along the frozen surface of Hollingworth Lake, amidst the enduringly bleak landscape that is the Lancashire side of the Pennines…

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Bogle Training Part I

Posted by Alan on January 23, 2011

This year sees the 50th anniversary of Manchester RAG’s Bogle. Since getting involved with Manchester RAG as a student and running their 2006 beer festival, Bogle has been one of those events on the calendar. I’ve helped a few times as a marshal, driver, co-ordinator and in 2009 I tried walking. Sadly that time I neglected to do any training so after 29 miles, at the 5th checkpoint I gave in.

This time I am training… alongside one of my team mates for this year, Richard.

St Stephen's Tower

Angry skies above St Stephen's Tower

So the basic premise was this – we walk from our flat to Cask, Pimlico. (You seriously thought beer wouldn’t be involved somewhere right?). This took us across Walthamstow marshes, through the back of Hackney, right through Smithfield Market onto the Embankment finally widing through the back streets behind the Catholic Cathedral to the pub.

Bus Abbey & Protest

The protesters were apparently not evicted on Friday as decreed by the media...

Cask is a fantastic little pub, serving a wide selection of food and ales.  Sadly for us we had essentially booked in for a (well-deserved and required!) pitstop for some food. And 2 half pints each. (It would be rude not to!)

Cask, Pimlico

Cask, Pimlico formerly Pimlico Tram

From here we headed south of the water to the places where Taxi’s infamously don’t go. Through Vauxhall, across to Elephant and Castle finally reaching the Draft House at Tower Bridge just as the sun had set. Cue more beer! Just the one pint though as after c. 17 miles we were both pretty tired. The calorific value of beer is probably helpful, but I am sure the alcohol isn’t!

Sadly recording all of the journey was a leap too far for my Nokia (it’s almost 2 years old now) – Sports tracker made it almost to E&C with us – it’s stats are below.

Statistics – recorded by Nokia Sports Tracker…
Distance recorded by GPS Average page Steps kCal burned
12.97 mi 16:01 min/mi 23995 1598
2.67 mi 15:00 min/mi 4707 328

Bogle is the first weekend in March so much more training required if I am to get around the full 55 miles.  Of course, sponsorship information will appear in due course… 🙂

Posted in Charity starts at home, Travelling around | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

The rules have changed

Posted by Alan on January 15, 2011

Last weekend I was back at home visiting my folks.  We regularly play Scrabble with a fairly inevitable outcome – mum wins – despite various dirty tricks! (repetitive electronic music, gifts of alcohol etc). This year however, Nikki had picked up a special scrabble with trick squares that allow you to bend the rules.

Trick Scabble

Trick Scabble

Sadly it only seemed to polarise further the scores! It was a bit weird breaking the rules – but crazy scores aside it didn’t add much to the game and I reckon I prefer the original. Oh well, best get practising for the next game!

Tiles - new font

Tiles - look they've changed the font too!

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The whisky squad

Posted by Alan on January 12, 2011

Talisker 20

Talisker 20

Last week we were lucky enough to have tickets to Whisky Squad #10, ‘Wee Speyside Beauties’. A last minute change of venue saw us in the historic venue of the cellar at Berry Bros & Rudd, Wine Merchants in St James.  The shop itself is Grade I listed, not just the frontage – the entire shop! Downstairs are the cellars – some of the 6 acres are still working cellars but some have been converted to rooms for entertaining. The format of the event was simple enough – 4 whiskies (all Berry’s own Speysides) plus a small taster of a new spirit versus and aged one, ending in a competition that brought the Talisker to the table.

As I’m still not really able to verbalise my thoughts on tastes (i.e. the Jilly Goolden/Oz Clarke thing), you’re best off reading Billy’s booze blog.

Posted in Food and Drink | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

No swimming

Posted by Alan on January 7, 2011

No swimming

No swimming

Even if you can break the ice…

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Pint potts

Posted by Alan on January 4, 2011

Pint potts, originally uploaded by Alan Perryman.

One of my adventures over the Christmas break was a pub “crawl” across the Pennines. I say crawl, well, all of the bars (bar one) were on railway stations so it wasn’t the most exercise filled crawl you could choose.

There’s more coming via East London Drinker, but as I was sorting the pictures I noticed this – in the West Riding at Dewsbury, the clock was made by a company called ‘Pint Potts’. How apt!

Posted in CAMRA, Food and Drink, Travelling around | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

Cold Geese

Posted by Alan on January 2, 2011

A short video from the Christmas holiday – these are Canada Geese by Cowm Park Reservoir.

Isn’t Canada meant to be really cold?

So WHY ARE THESE GEESE SHIVERING?!

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