20 September 2021


Beverley Minster still rising high above the houses

Clint was deposited at the "Park and Ride" car park  at Hessle west of Hull. I rode on a double decker bus to the stadium and headed to a little Polish cafe on Anlaby Road. We have met up there countless times before.  It was a lovely, sunny morning so we bagged one of the picnic tables in the small enclosed garden at the back. "We" meant me and Tony and Karl. 

We had what the young Polish café proprietors call British breakfasts as opposed to the Polish breakfasts that are also on the menu. We drank mugs of tea.

The game began promisingly for The Tigers but well, one thing led to another and we ended up losing the match by three goals to one. It might have been so different if  fortune had been on our side. The result cast a shadow over the weekend. It's crazy I know but a victory always puts a smile on my face  and the world seems like a much better place for a day or two. It is the opposite of that when we lose.

Back in the town of Beverley six miles north of Hull, Tony and I went walking. First we headed to the  allotment that he and his wife Pauline have been working on for the past eighteen months. We sat in the afternoon sunshine drinking tea from a flask after picking the last of the raspberries.

Allotment gardens  looking to Beverley Minster's twin towers

Then we walked along Beverley Beck to the point where it meets The River Hull. Beverley Beck is really a short canal. It was dug in medieval times and along it the limestone for Beverley Minster's construction was brought in barges. Beverley Minster is a truly magnificent church built between 1220 and 1425 and it still stands in testimony to the town's medieval importance.

At the end of  Beverley Beck there is a small marina and in there - I kid you not - there's a silver submarine. It has been there for years. If the skipper shouts "Down! Down!" the submarine won't be going far - perhaps no more than five feet!

Submarine at the end of Beverley Beck

Pauline was heading out to Hull for a little soiree with some of her nursing colleagues so Tony and I visited one of the best pubs in the world. It's real name is "The White Horse" but everyone around Beverley knows it as Nellie's. I first had a beer in there over fifty years ago. It hasn't changed much though on Saturday night I noticed that it was not heaving with customers. It still retains its authentic Victorian appearance.

Then we went on for a delicious late curry at "The Windmill Inn"  before heading back to Tony's house for "Match of the Day" on the television.

Statue that remembers medieval carriers in Beverley

In the morning, Tony made a slap up breakfast as our endless conversation continued. Then I whipped Clint's silver buttocks, galloping back west to Sheffield. However, before leaving the East Riding of Yorkshire, that land of my heart, I made an interesting diversion - to a vineyard! It was the Little Wold vineyard near South Cave on the edge of the chalky Yorkshire Wolds. There I bought a bottle of  the Barley Hill White (2020). Shirley and I have drunk it  before and it's excellent. Mind you it needs to be at £15 a bottle.

Apart from what happened on the football pitch, this was a great weekend. It was nice to  be back in the very town where I went to school between the ages of sixteen and eighteen - Beverley Grammar School, on the edge of The Westwood. Like coming home.

Signs spotted on an old house in Beverley

18 September 2021


It's 8.45 on Saturday morning and the sun is shining. Clint is outside gleaming like a silver rocket ship, ready for take off. We are going over to the city of Hull in an hour. I'm off to see our match with Sheffield United. Kick off is at 12.30pm - an unusual time, no doubt chosen for the benefit of Sky Sports. Don't you just hate Rupert Murdoch?

As requested by The Office for National Statistics I have already completed  a swab test and a PCR blood test this morning. It's something we do every month as part of an ongoing national survey.

I will be staying over in Beverley tonight with my friend Tony and his missus Pauline. He's also a Hull City nut and we have watched countless matches together. Seen plenty of downs and a handful of ups such as reaching the promised land of The Premier League back in  2008.

Blogging will be problematic so to accompany this short post I am just leaving you with three pictures of Phoebe from my daughter's Instagram account. The beloved granddaughter was eight months old this week. She's  ⅔ of a year old. Now I must go and shower the vessel in which I dwell. Up The Tigers!

16 September 2021


Cyclists on The Old Coach Road, Clumber Park

It was time for another walk. I pressed the buttons on Clint's onboard computer and he whisked me off in  an  easterly direction along the A57 to Worksop in Nottinghamshire. There he parked himself along a quiet lane close to Manton Lodge. We were on the northern edge of Clumber  Park - once the country estate of the Dukes of Newcastle.

Today I just wanted to walk in Geograph squares that I had not yet ticked off. There were many, many  trees but with the assistance of a map I made my way happily in a sausage-shaped circuit of some six  miles.

On one narrow lane I met two council workers in day-glo jerkins. I conversed with them for a while. Their role is to clear up litter and something awful that we in Britain call "fly-tipping". I do not know what this is called in America, Canada, Australia, Germany or New Zealand. Essentially, fly-tipping is the dumping of rubbish in the countryside. Often it's simply the detritus from building projects - broken tiles, old lumps of mortar or half-empty bags of cement, random bits of wood, plastic bags and suchlike. The thing is that someone has to clean this crap up  - people like the two men I met.

As we parted, I said  "Keep up the good work gentlemen!"

Happy as a pig in muck

Flytippers are the lowest of the low in my opinion. They do not give a toss about the environment that we all have to share and apparently they have zero concern about the fact that their mindless dumping causes local councils extra and very unnecessary expense.

Ah well, it's nice to blow off a little steam.

Clint transported me back to Sheffield  with little persuasion. Beforehand, we pulled into a McDonalds where I was hoping to purchase one of their brand new plantburgers but apparently they have not reached Worksop yet.

15 September 2021


The Old Grammar School in Market Harborough

Last week, when we were holidaying in Leicestershire and Rutland, I snapped almost two hundred photographs. I shared a handful of those images with you - illustrating blogposts. Today, I simply wish to share some more previously unseen pictures from that lovely week away. We could have easily chosen this week but I am glad that we didn't because it's rather grey and chilly and we have seen some rain  in the past three days. It's hard to believe that just a week ago we were applying sun lotion.

Strangely weathered gravestone at Tilton-on-the-Hill

Ceremonial horseshoes in the Castle Hall, Oakham

Modern stained glass window in Melton Mowbray church

Another view of Normanton Church, Rutland Water

Passer-by in Oakham

14 September 2021


From the Bosh! Instagram page

In Britain there are five big supermarket chains. One of them is called "Morrisons". Yesterday they launched a new range of vegan ready meals designed by Bosh!

They are really good. I know because I have eaten each of the six ready meals -  "Smashin' Shepherd's Pie", "Ultimate Chilli and Rice", "Smokin' Spag Bol", "Mighty Mac N' Greens", "Crackin' Jalfrezi Curry and Rice" and "Game Changin' Lasagne". All so delicious that it is very easy to forget that they contain no meat or dairy elements.

For your interest, the packaging is all recyclable apart from the thin film that is sealed to the tops of all similar ready meals. The card sleeve is made from recycled paper products.

Ian and Henry were over in Wrexham, Wales three weeks ago - visiting a large food factory that has been charged with producing the Bosh! ready meals and shipping them to Morrisons stores around the country. They are in  five hundred locations though the supermarket chain began as a single shop here in Yorkshire.

It is, I am sure you will agree - incredible news. Ian and Henry are further excited by the special relationship that Morrisons have established with Amazon for food deliveries.

The "Bosh!" journey continues. We are naturally so proud of our Ian and wonder what might come next. Perhaps more ready meals...

13 September 2021



Prince Andrew and Virginia Roberts in 2001

"I’ve no recollection of ever meeting her" - Prince Andrew

Well, she was just seventeen
You know what I mean
And the way she looked was way beyond compare
So how could I dance with another (Ooh)
When I saw her standing there

Well she looked at me, and I, I could see
That before too long I'd fall in love with her
She wouldn't dance with another (Whooh)
When I saw her standing there

Well, my heart went "boom"
When I crossed that room
And I held her hand in mine

Whoah, we danced through the night
And we held each other tight
And before too long I fell in love with her
Now I'll never dance with another (Whooh)
When I saw her standing there

Well, my heart went "boom"
When I crossed that room
And I held her hand in mine

Whoah, we danced through the night
And we held each other tight
And before too long I fell in love with her
Now I'll never dance with another (Whooh)
Since I saw her standing there
Oh since I saw her standing there
Oh since I saw her standing there

12 September 2021


The amazing "Bosh!" story continues. Our son Ian and his old schoolmate Henry have been working hard on their sixth book and it is now available for pre-order pending its release in early December I believe.

Some critics of plant-based diets put about the myth that being vegan is expensive. In this book Ian and Henry wished to dispel that daft rumour and prove that preparing good vegan food can be inexpensive. In fact, when you take the meat or fish element out of food you save yourself many pounds or dollars (Malaysia: ringgits).

Three weeks ago I was checking the final publishers' manuscript for errors and discovered something that made me grin from ear to ear. Ian had not told me in advance about this but in the desserts section of the book there's a recipe for "Neil's Tiger Bars"! In other words they are named after me with a nod to my lifelong support for Hull City A.F.C. - The Tigers! Though I have not yet eaten one of these bars I am confident that they will be amazingly yummy just like me. Sorry about the image below - it is a photo I took of page 203 of the manuscript:-

My immortality  is at last guaranteed!

To explore Bosh! start here.

Most Visits