Wednesday, 31 December 2008

New Years Eve.

Personally, new years eve is not my cup of tea. I spent too long in scotland where the tradition is that 'before the bells' is the time to think about times past and about those, who in the past year, have gone down that long, dark road that we must all , sooner or later, travel. Its also the time, I think, when those on their own feel most alone and it is, perhaps unsurprisingly, a time when the suicide rate rises.

All that being said, I suppose that when the bells ring out at midnight I shall be out and about with the rest, if not celebrating, observing.

All I will say, as they do over the border, is have a happy new year, when it comes.

Annoying People

The Frost family and friends gathered at The La\mb for a meal last night to celebrate Carolyn's birthday. A good time was had by all but the occasion was somewhat spoilt by a woman on the next table who produced a high decible cackling all through our meal.

Why is it that some seem to have to advertise the fact that they are having a good time to everyone in hearing distance at full volume ?.

New Year Resolutions

I suppose that you are all in the process of making your new year resolutions as this is the time of the year when we are all traditionally supposed to put our houses in order. Whats it to be this year then ?. Give up the fags, cut down the booze and get your love lives in order, if you are lucky enough to have one, of course. Maybe its time to try and be on better terms with the boss, particularly with the threat of mass unemployment hanging over so many. Perhaps you will be giving up crap telly and taking up reading good books instead, or enrolling with a Gym. Whatever you are resolving, feel free to come on the blog and tell us.

We can then observe how well, or otherwise you keep to your resolutions.

Myself I just resolve to keep on, keeping on.

Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Happy Birthday Carolyn Frost

Today, we mark the birthday of Carolyn Frost without whose support and encouragement the blog would probably not have lasted a month. As well as being supportive of the blog, Carolyn has been the source of many of the ideas behind blog posts especially in the early days. She was also the originator of the slogan 'Read blog-Do banking' to show where internet priorities should lie.

Being the gentleman that I am I shall not be revealing her age but she has recently been described as 'ageless'. Someone also recently said of her 'I dont know how old you are, but you dont look your age'. we know what they probably mean. We can also say that she adds a touch of glamour to any occasion.

Carolyn is also a capable, caring and intelligent woman and one of the hardest working that we know. She exemplifies the best of those who often work almost unsung on the frontline of social care. she is also a much loved mother, partner and grandmother and a friend to many including myself. Our conversations have brightened up many an evening over the past fourteen months.

So we say, happy birthday Carolyn and may you get all that you desire now, and in the next twelve months .

Monday, 29 December 2008

What Was It All About ?.

Many are asking what was the incident that necessitated the deployment of three police cars to the Parsonage Lane area on the evening of christmas day and, presumably not unrelated, why a police officer and a PSCO visited the Lamb yesterday saying that they had heard there had been trouble in the area recently and wanted to make sure everything wasa all right.

Not even the Silverton bush telegraph seems to have the answer to this one.

The Dead Zone

We are now in that strange period between christmas and the new year. The time between hangovers past and those yet to come when, some of those still in gainful employment, are back at work whilst others continue with their extended breaks. Many of the latter seemed to be in Exeter this morning taking advantage of the massive discounts to be had as the retail trade seeks to avoid the fate of Woolworths, Zavvi, MFI and the rest. For many of the employees of those, and other , failed high street chains the dead zone trhis year must be a very worrying time indeed as they see the liklihood of prolonged unemployment replacing the usual annual worry about how to spend an extended christmas break. Sadly, we can predict with certainty that by the time the dead zone comes around again many more now in employment will have joined them.

Sunday, 28 December 2008

Not Getting The Message

So, one of these highly paid think tanks that now seem to run our lives has discovered that young people are not getting the message about safe drinking and that going out to get drunk is the object of the exercise. Two points strike me about this. Presumably. most of the people who inhabit these think tanks went to universities, places where getting trollied on a regular basis is a large part of the university experience. Therefore, unless they were part of some uni teetotelers club, the likes of which I never came across they could have worked that one out before they started.

The second point is that any student of social history could have told you that getting hammered has been a traditional pastime in the British Isles, as elsewhere in Northern Europe, since prehistory.Most of the o;d norse myths involve warriors getting wrecked at some point and you only have to study the eighteenth century and see the cartoons of Hogarth to see what the London of that period was like. It was largely to control the drinking habits of the working class that licensing laws were introduced in the first place to ensure that they continued to produce the maximum amount of surplos value needed to finance industrial capitalism in its expansionary phase. Perhaps more history being taught, rather then less might help put things in more perspective.

The real problem now is the easy availability of the demon drink in supermarkets and corner shops, for as any bloke on the barstool can tell you the youth dont, on the whole get wellied in the pub, often they are slaughtered by the time they get there. Will this, or any other government for that matter, going to take on the ASDA's and Tesco's, and the rest of the assorted lobbies that support the drinks industry ?. I somehow doubt it and I suspect that the state will continue to attempt to control binge drinking amongst the youth by increasing duties that will hit the ordinary chap in the corner with his pint as hard as the kid puking up in the phone box after a night on the Apple Sours.

Saturday, 27 December 2008

Manacles and Chains.

Alan Isaac keeps telling us that he is going to make sure that Homer does not go walkabouts again. i wonder what he is proposing, manacles and chains or maybe a specially trained team of attack Rottwielers, time will tell, I suppose.

Drinking Games.

Sorry there are no reports on last nights fun and frivolity at The Lamb Inn. Sadly, I have an allergy to drinking games since being caught up in a game of 'jacks' that involved consuming a large amount of Pernod back ion 1976. I have unpleasent memories if that one to this day.All I can say is that last nights event was well attended and that a number of people won prizers.

What more could you bask for.

New Photos

As you will see we have added some new photos. The highlight of the new bunch is our very own chief stoker 'relaxing' after his christmas lunch.

Its probably just as well we dont have a soundtrack to accompany that one.

Obssed With The Blog

A Couple of people told me over christmas that they are ' obsessed by the blog'. I dont know whether to be f flattered or frightened by this/ After all. what is the blog but an old bloke in a room with a keyboard, ramblig on about his observations of a Devon village over a 50 plus year period with added bits about the village as it is now as vioewed from the vantage point of a bar stool. Its not rocket science and several other people have told me that they have had similar ideas in the past. It just so happens that I have the time to do it.

If obsession with the blog leads to more then just reading it, I hope that it will lead to nore people taking an active interest in making Silverton an even better pla\ce to live in. The blog has never been just a peice of writing, but also a tool to encourage people to take an active interest in their community. I suspect that we are entering difficult times economically, possibly on a scale that few alive today have ever seen. There may never possibly have been a time in the past century when there was a greater need for communities like Silverton to pull together.

Perhaps that should be our real current obsession.

Friday, 26 December 2008

Boxing Day Food.

Why is it that the leftovers we have on boxing day after the main event on christmas day often taste better ?. We were asking ourselves that question this afternoon at Wyndham road. Perhaps its because the fdood has had time to mature or, because you can be a bit more inventive with the christmas leftovers. Whatever the case, thanks to Carolyn and Phil for the work done on todays meal. A cracking feast altogether.

Seasonal weather

No white christmas this year but a suitably seasonal cold and frosty boxing day. I hear that the unspeakable were out chasing the uneatable, in a suita\bly lawful ffasion I am sure, in the Thorverton area and by the sounds of gunfire in the arrea it would seem that large numbers of pheasents were meeting their doom. Good to see that plenty of people were taking advantage of the weather to walk off the excesses of Christmas day. Hopefully, this more seasonal pattern of weather is here to stay for a while.

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Festive Greetingsn.

To all those who have birthdays over the christmas season especially Paul Barons, Paul Fox and Britney Fox who all had birthdays testerday.

Silverton's Got Talent.

Nice to see Mr POaul Fox and Lara, daughter of Miles strutting their vocal stuff with Honest John and Tim Herniman at THe Lamb last night. It goes to show that you dont have to turn to the 'X Factor' for tsalent.

Christmas Disasters

Hopefully, no one had aneal christmas cooking disasters, but if you did feel free to recount them in the comments boxes.

We won't laugh, honest.

Merry Christmas Everybody.

So here it is, merry christmas everybody's having fum, or at least I hope you all are. Ihave had a brilliant christmas day curtosy of the Frost family, a day that I shall always remember. Thanks to Carolyn for the cooking and to Paul, Phil and Paula for their company. Hopefully, all our readers had as good a day and that the rest of the festive season will be just as good for everyone.

Wednesday, 24 December 2008

The Final Countdown

Christmas Eve, and I hope you have got all your shopping and wrapping done. In a few hours the shops will be shutting and its party time. Dont forget folks, pace yourselves because its a long time until the day after boxing day and you dont want to peak too early. hold back on the Tequila Slammers and the Apple Sours tonoght and be careful with the Cheeky Vimto's. Theres nothing worse then spending Christmas Day with a hangover.

I shall be out and about with my trusty camera later to catch some of the Christmas Eve festivities for posterity.

Have a good Christmas Eve and as they used to say on 'Hill Street Blues', 'Lets be careful out there'.

Tuesday, 23 December 2008


Welcome back to Phil Frost who has just returned from a month in Thailand where the weather will have been a good deal warmer then here. Given Phil's well known culinary skills and enthusiasm for foriegn travel I am thinking of appointing him as our Cookery and Foriegn Affairs advisor.

Also, a welcome for my nephew, Joe Carroll who is a reader of the blog, usually resident in Chicago, who is currently in London for christmas.


My Neice, Micha raised an interesting question last night. Why is it that the plural for various types of fish is the same as the singular, therefore a number of Haddock are not 'Haddocks' but Haddock, the same with cod and the rest. I had not thought of this before but its a good question.

Monday, 22 December 2008


We now have the phoyos of yesterdays events. See the sidebar. Warning, certain of these are not for the young, or those of a nervous disposition.

Trout Quiz: Jackpot Gone

The £280 Jackpot at The Trout Inn quiz was won last night by a team called The Refugees. A record 27 teams took part in last nights quiz and the three person team from The Lamb came joint seventh having had a disasterous round on christmas films.

For those interested the two questions that won the jackpot were.

In which London square is the Tory party HQ


By what name is Derek Edwards better known..

Clingfilm Attack

They say that every dog has his day and so it proved yesterday when the chief stoker got his retaliation in for the constant sellotaping of his cigarette packets by 'Barney' Barons by wrapping the offenders sports car in clingfilm. A large team took part in the operation and photos will be coming to the blog soon.

He has returned

Those following the saga of Homer will be glad to hear that the little fellow has returned to his rightful abode. Homer was found yesterday afternoon by young miss Britney Fox in the grounds of the Methodist Church and miss Fox was suiyably rewarded by a grateful Alan Issac. Unfortunately, Homer now has his arm in a sling, seemingly having suffered a similar injury to his owner. Homer, however, will be making few public appearences for the time being until arrangements for his futue security have been put in place.

Photos to follow soon.

Shower Danger

Alan at The Lamb, fell whilst exiting the shower on saturday night and appears to have torn a muscle in his shoulder. I believe that Jim at The Silverton Inn has also recently had a similar accident.

It goes to show that cleanliness may well be next to godliness but its not always a safe option

Sunday, 21 December 2008

More Bus News

Rumour has it that we are going to see a revised bus timerable on january. Perhaps the era of the double deckers in Wyndham Road is drawing to a close.

Watch this space.

Whats Become Of The Mog On The Blog ?.

The mog on the blog has not been sighted in its old haunts outside the Lamb for a number of weeks. The mog had become a familier part of the landscape and had made a good many friends. One hoprs that the mog is alive and well and has not been seduced away by offers of free whiskas by any other of the drinking establishments.

Mud Wrestling

It appears that chief stoker Frost was involved in an unseemly mud wrestling session with himself after exiting a taxi following the Tarmacers 'Black Friday' bash in the early hours of saturday morning.

Any reports of a strange humanoid creature roaming the streets of the village are thus explained.

Saturday, 20 December 2008

Missing Hat.

During the Lamb draw on Thursday night, my baseball cap went missing. The cap isd instantely recognisable, being blue and having the scottish lion rampant on the front. Hopefully, we shall see it retrurned. Perhaps Homer has got it.

The Flag

Quite a long while back, we were told that the devon plag on the flagpole in the village square had been removed and replaced by the cross of St George whilst a bigger devon flag was prepared.

Will we ever get the devon flag back ?.

Friday, 19 December 2008

Music on Christmas Eve

Honest John and Tim Herniman will be doing their annual performance at the Lamb Inn on Christmas Eve, starts 8.30pm approximately.

Another Christmas Eve event, Darts games and a free buffet at the Silverton Inn. Starts 1.00pm

Tis The Season To Be Jolly, Ho Ho Ho.

We enter the last weekend before christmas tomorrow and I hope you have got all your shopping done. The few days remaining up to the big day are when the shops get crowded with panicky shoppers and the shoppers get ratty with shop staff and with other shoppers. This is where those who do their shopping early can relax with a cup of coffee and watch the rest of the crowd knocking themselves out in the final panic and the righteous can indulge themselves in a justified bout of self satisfaction..

Until christmas morning that is, when it becomes apparent that the Nintendo DS intended for little Willie doesnt work and someone forgot to get a present for a reletive who arrives at short notice.

With Christmas as with much else, excess cockiness rarely pays.


The Lamb Inn was crowded last night for the big christmas draw with over a thousend pounds worth of draw tickets having been sold. Prizes ranged from an ipod Nano and a digital frame down to the usual novelty items. A good time was had by all but the night did not mark the return of Homer disguised as a prize.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Celebrity Big Brother,From Heroes to Zeroes.

I understand that potential contestants are now being approached for the next series of the appalling Celebrity Big Brother. Amongst those tipped to appear are the astronomer, Patrick Moore, the former presenter of the cult eighties TV show 'The Word', Terry Christian and the former leader of the Scottish Sicialist Party, Tommy Sheridan. It would appear that Sheridan has learnt nothing from the disasterous performance of his ally, George Galloway on the same show a couple of years back. Allegedly, Sheridan has seriuous financial problems arising from his current status as a phd law student, but it is indicitave of the times we live in that someone who made his reputation as the foremost opponent of the poll taxnow thinks it financially expedient to appear on a freak show for failed celebrities.

Sheridan was once a heroi to a very large section of opponents of Thatcherism both in Scotland and beyond and was elected to the scottish parliament on that basis. Due to his later legal problems and an insatiable lust for media attention he has now reduced himself to a figure of fun.

As The Stranglers put it 'No more heroes, anymore'.

Lamb Christmas Quiz

A very busy night for the Lamb christmas quiz with fifteen teams participating.After a very long and very hot session the team known as 'Two Short Planks' emerged with 'Mrs Claus' as runners up. Not a good night for me, I am afraid as my team finished eight.

Dont forget, its the big draw tonight.

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

Micky Mouse

Sorry to return to the saga of the buses once again, but the descent into a micky mouse service continues. I went to catch the 11.39 service to Yiverton testerday morning which did not arrive ar all. Todat I returned from Exeter on the 14.25 departure which was ten minutes late going out, then got as far as Cowley Bridge and remembered that he had not been via St Davids Station. He then proceeded back to the station which was a waste of time as rgere was no one waiting. Stuff like thgis is a daily occurancw.

The Digital Changeover

Its worth reminding ourselves that the changeover to Digital TV is drawing closer and that it wony be long before our old analouge equipment will be junk. Silverton not being a good reception area its best to find out if you are best going for the set top box option or for satrllite. Dony forget also, that you need a TV that can work with digital signals, so if you have some spare money over christmas it might be as well to take advantage of the cheap deals to be had on Televisions of all kinds. Iys particularly worth making sure your second or third sets are ready for thr digital revolotion

Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Tree Up.

The Village christmas tree is now up in the little rec. Hopefully, there will be no sabotage this year as I believe has been the case in the past.

Perhaps we shall find Holer under the tree on christmas day.

Beyond Belief.

So, it seems that a bloke called Madoff has had away with umppteen billions of dollars by running what amounts to a rather more sophisticated version of the old pyramid scam where the investments of new iinvestors are used to generaye profits for the older ones and that no new profit is actually created. It would also seem that amongst those who were taken in by this con were HSBC and The Royal Bank Of Scotland to the tune of hundreds of millions of pounds.

Any chance that the directors, fund managers or whatever of these institutions will ever be held to account for falling for this scam ?. I wouldnt hold my breath. Doubtless, most pf them will be employed elsewhere by now or, having taken their golden handshakes, will be looking to sit out the developimg recession/depression in somewhat sunnier climes.

Shoe Express

Watching GW Bush doging the flying size 10,s launched at him by an iraye Iraqi journalist, two things struck me. We all know the GWB is hardly the sharpest knife in the box, but surely it must have been clear to him after what was done to the overthrown statue of Saddam Hussein that in Arab culture, being attacked by shoes is a somewhat more serious insult then the two fingure salute.

The second thing that struck me was what if this form of protest catches on ?. You could have DEFRA officials who have annoyed the farming lobby being bombarded with green wellies. The defence minister having desert boots flung at him by irate squaddies and god help anyone who seriously upsets The English Collective Of Prostitutes.

Coming under attack from a hail of stillettoes could be a very painful experience indeed.

Monday, 15 December 2008


A word that I have never heard before but which Mrs Frost used in a conversation this morning. She says it sounds better then fruition.

Lorry Proud.

It would seem from what I hear, that some lorry drivers take greater pride in keeping their lorries clean internally then they do their houses. Given the sort of mod cons that some of the long distance vehicles now come equipped with, I cant say that I am surprised. Its a pity that some car owners are not so tidy minded.

Hand Signals.

Is it true, as I was told last night, that couples who have been together a long time develop private sets of hand signals as an additional means of communication ?. I cant say that I remember it when I was married but perhaps its more common then realised. Perhaps its worth watching your long married friends to see if this can be verified.

Funny Money ?.

I had a bit of a set to with the owner of The Merrymeade in Sandford Peverall when he tried to refuse a scottish twenty pound note. He claimed that Scottisah note are not legal tender, but then admitted that the banks will accept them. Given the current economic climate you might well think that anyone in business would be glad to get their hands on any sort of note that the banks would accept. He did eventually take the note.

Having lived in Scotland for a long time I know that what does more damage to the union between England and Scotland amongst ordinary scots than stories about scottish notes not being accepted in England. Luckily this is much less common then it used to be but still annoys people no end.

Perhaps people who quibble about accepting Scottish notes should remember that the Bank Of England was founded by a scot.

Quiz News.

The Lamb Inn quiz team scored its third successive win last night beating The Merrymeade 'A' team in the knockout cup by a margin of 11 points. The Beer Leg was lost again though, unfortunately.

Other quiz news. The Lamb Inn christmas quiz takes place on wednesday at 8.30pm.

The Trout Inn quiz takes place, once more, on Sunday night. Jackpot now £280.00.

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Upping The Stakes.

Posters offering a reward for the return of Homer have now gone up in the Lamb. It is thought that this latest move may lead to negotiations being opened for the safe return of the little fellow. The blog will continue to report on any future developments.

Others To Remember At Christmas.

The deaths of four Royal Marines in Afghanistan should remind us that, for many families in the south west, the Christmas season will be celebrated with apprehension for a possible knock at the door bringing news of death or serious injury. Sadly, this has now become an almost daily reality for many families with family members serving in that country far away about which few people know, and fewer understand. To those families we can only end our best wishes and hope that their worst fears never materialise.

Whilst remembering families who live under the shadow of the knock at the door, it is worth remembering why we are in this mess in the first place. We should never forget that the fundamentalist militias that are known collectively as the Taliban, along with Al-Queda, were the direct creation of the US administrations of the 1070's and 1980's, determined to do to the Soviet Union in Afghanistan what the US considered the Russians had done to them in Vietnam. Having created a monster they could not control we all have now to live with the consequences. For all the gung-Ho rubbish editorials being put out in sections of the British press about staying the course and the like, you can gaurantee that, behind the scenes, the British and US administrations will be seeking to do deals with sections of the Taliban, just as they did with sections of the Sunni opposition in Iraq, in order to create conditions where they can exit the whole mess while saving as much face as possible. Thats the way these scenarios work out time after time. Thats the reality of international politics. In reality Afghanistan is small beer compared to the world economic crisis and the coming conflicts over water and energy reserves.

Floody Hell

Substantial parts of the south west were hit by yet another round of the flash flooding that seems to be a particular feature of this winter yesterday. Silverton escaped any serious flooding but there was again some minor flooding in parts of Fore Street and some small landslides on minor roads in the area.Luckily, not being on a flood plain, like villages such as Stoke Canon, we escape serious, prolonged flooding, being on the side of a hill we are vunerable to the sort of torrential downpours that we saw overnight on friday, luckily so far this winter, the successive downpours have not caused us toi many problems. Whilst being thankful for our kluck, so far, we should also remember those in this county and the surrounding ones who may well be spending the festive season out of their homes because of the recent weather events.

Saturday, 13 December 2008

New Laptop

This is the first post sent from my brand new laptop. New machine, same okd nonsense.We are really getting technologically advanced now. This machine can play Blu-Ray discs.

Be warned, I now also have a cheap camcorder. Silvertonia may go UTube before long.

Wind Turbine Update

It seems that this is yet another case where the planning process is working against the interests of those wishing to raise objections as I understand that objections have to be in by December 16th. Whatever ones views on the rights and wrongs of the proposed wind turbine, it would certainly seem to me that the consultation period on this issue has been entirely inadequate and that there has certainly not been enough information given to those likely to be affected.

Calling The Shots

Two blokes walk into the Silverton Inn, order two pints and one asks the barman if he can have the juke box on. Barman replies that the juke box cannot be turned on until """" and """" have finished eating. Thats what really calling the shots when you can dictate whether or not the pub can have music or not, while you are having your dinner.

When this was discussed elsewhere later people wondered whether it was advisable to go to the Silverton to listen to some music, or whether """" and """" were still having their coffee and After Eights.

Friday, 12 December 2008

Some New Photos.

I have now added some new photos for the pre christmas season. The Glasgow pan pipers, a rather less the adequate photo of Clannadonia in action and a weapon of mass destruction that it is rumoured that the parish council are thinking of aquiring in order to deter miscreants.

The Pipes Are Calling

One final thought on my recent scottish trip. Whilst in Glasgow the other sunday I came across the local branch of the pan pipers doing their thing in the Buchanan Street shopping precinct. Dressed for reasons I cannot imagine, in full native american headdresses and regalia they were playing that famous old inca melody.

'Highland Cathedral'.

Its Too Quiet.

Whilst out and about last night I visited one of our drinking establishments at eight thirty and was surprised to find only one customer in the bar. After a while that customer left and the woman tending the bar retired to play the fruit machine, which she continued to do until I left about half an hour later.

We are lucky here in still having three punubs when its estimated that nationwide, five pubs a day are closing. Fewer customers leads to a lack of atmosphere and creates a vicious circle whereby the pub gewts used less and less with the obvious final outcome. Another consequence is that staff become demoralised and lose interest in their job.

Whilst belt tightening due to the economic crisis is inevitable if we want to preserve what we have pubwise, there is something we can do over the coming festive season, that is to spread our trade amongst our three pubs just a little more then we might have previously. I think its going to be a case of use it or lose it.

More Parking Problems.

Residents of Davies Close are finding it increasingly difficult to park near their houses when returning from work in the afternoons and are having to add to the existing parking problems in Wyndham Road. It is alleged that residents of Parsonage Lane are parking in Davies Close adding to the problems caused by the Polish residents of the Close who seem to have four cars connected to their one address.

There is no easy answer to these problems but it would be interesting to hear if the parish council is developing a strategy to deal with the increasing problems caused by street parking.

Rory Does A Runner

Rory, the black dog on the blog, caused consternation this morning by doing a runner whilst being taken to his daytime abode. Due to my inattention, he escaped complete with lead, and was eventually tracked down to a garden in Prispen View. No reports of mauled felines have been recieved so we can assume that no serious harm was caused during his escape.

It will teach me to be more careful in the mornings.

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Thomas Hardy and Silverton

Our own Pat Fleming has come across evidence that an early story by Thomas Hardy, set in 'Silverthorne' is, in fact, based on a conflation of the names of Silverton and Thorverton. I ubderstand you can find out more about this if you do a Google search on Thomas Hardy and Devon. I knew vaguely about the Silverton connection having seen a map in the front of a Hardy novel many years ago that identifies all the locations that Hardy used in his novels and short stories.

It would be intersting to know what led Hardy to base one of his early stories in this area. As he was a prolific letter writer and his correspondace is at Exeter University a research project awaits someone.

Covering Yourself.

Another round of the common cold seems to be with us, as usual just in time for christmas. The chief stoker raised the point in the pub last night that maybe muslim women who cover their faces are less inclined to spread colds or indeed, catch them. I dont know if anyone has done research on this but if it could be proved to be true, perhaps Burkhas would be a hot item on the christmas present list.

They Seek Him Here, They Seek Him There.

In the play 'Waiting For Godot' by Samuel Beckett, two tramps spend the entire play waiting for the arrival of Godot. For the past year the regulars of The Lamb Inn have been awaiting the return of Alan Isaac's alter ego, Homer. As many will know, the talkative little christmas decoration disappeared from his normal spot at the end of the bar nearest the toilets last christmas time and has not been seen since. In a message left on this blog earlier in the year, someone purporting to be Homer claimed that he was on a world tour and would be back at christmas, but the authenticity of the message has not been confirmed. It is said that a substantial reward will be given to anyone returning the little fellow but so far, to no avail.

It is reported that if Homer returns at christmas there will be street parties, wine will flow in the streets and ten naked virgins will dance down Fore Street although the chances of finding ten virgins in Silverton even for the return of Homer seem pretty remote. Whilst expectations of the second coming of Homer are rising daily, let us remember that in 'Waiting For Godot' Godot never actually appears. Lets hope that Homer, if it was indeed he, sticks to his word and is back for christmas.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Wind Turbine.

Working through a mountain of email going back into last month, I came across one from Graham Parnell regarding a planning application that has been submitted to Mid Devon District Council for the erection of a wind turbine at Ash Farm that will be visible from Silverdale, Tiverton road and a good deal of that part of the village. The proposed turbine would be some 20 metres high.

Definately a dituation that needs some thought, comments welcome.

Six Months Of 'Silvertonia'

The blog has now been running for six months. I think we can say that it has done, largely, what it set out to do as stated in the first post. To create a forum for comment on events in the village and to post as much local news as is fit to print. Additionally, we have had some flights of fancy and some humour. Also, we have recorded some aspects of recent social history purtaining to the village, We have reported on shops closing and reopening, the arrival of the double deckers, triumphs, tragedies, drunken dog walking, spats with the BNP, street market, 'moonlight and wurzels', Giant chocolate bars over Wyndham road and much else.

What the next six months will bring, who knows, but you can guarantee that the blog will be keeping a close eye, and camera, on the christmas and new year festivities along with anything else that comes along. Doubtless, we shall encounter some controversy somewhere along the line, but thats thats the nature of village life.

Forward to one year of Silvertonia.

No Scouts Deliveries.

We were sorry to hear that the Scouts will not be running their christmas card delivery service this year. This will be a sad loss for the village, particularly for many of the older residents who had found it a cheap and efficient way of getting cards delivered within the village. Hopefully, by next year the current problems will be overcome and the service can be restarted.

Far Flung Beer.

Its always been interesting to note the westcountry beers that you can find at branches of JD Weatherspoons in the west of scotland. Cotliegh, Exmoor, Butcombe and even Exe Valley ales have been sighted on occasions and Weatherspoons in Ayr were selling Skinners 'Cornish Knocker' when I was there. I believe that THe Lamb may well be stocking this one in the new year and a very decent pint it is too.

It was good to see that Scottish beers were not neglected and besides Deuchars, Weatherspoons were also stocking Orkney Breweries mighty 'Dark Island', the only stout worth drinking in my view.


I was in Edinburgh last friday, the day after large parts of Scotland were hit by snow and ice. Those who know Edinburgh will know that it can be a very cold city in winter and last friday was no exception to that rule. Nice to see therefore, that people wee not put off visiting the German and Highland markets in the Princes street Gardens and interesting to see that the cold weather was not putting off a good many tourists who appeared to be from the far east. I suppose that Edinburgh winters cold as they may be on occasions dont compare with what you might find at this time of the year in Beijing.

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Carlton Hotel.

Once again, thanks to the staff of the Carlton Hotel in Prestwick for the excellent service given during my stay there.

Hopefully, I will be back before too long.

The changing face of Glasgow.

Glasgow has been an immigrant city , probably since the beginning of the 10th century. Tens of thousands of Gaelic speaking highlanders moved down into the city at the time of the highland clearences, partly due to being driven off the land and partly in order to take advantage of the opportunities crreated by the expansion of shipbuilding, coal and steel production in Glasgow and the central belt of Scotland. In Glasgow, they iintermingled with tens of thousands of Irish from the north and west of Ireland driven by the effects of the famine and again, by the opportunities cresated by industrialisation. Later in the centuary, Protestant Ulstermen came over to become the skilled backbone ofshipyards like John Brow'ns and Jews from Lithuania settled in the Gorbals and the south side of the city. Also, Italians settled widely in the west of scotland vecoming small shopkeepers, some of whose descendendents have found fame as actors and musicians such as Tom Conti, Daniella Nardini, Sharleen Spitari and Paulo Nutini. More Lithuamians came at the time of the first world war and since then Glasgow has seen the \arrival of a large Pakistani community, Chilieans at the time of the Pinochet dictatorship, Kurds, Iraqi's and most rtecently, Congolese and other african refugees.

All this goes to show how one dimensional much of the english view of modern Scotland tends to be.

Christmas Clannadonia.

Nice to see the mighty Clannadonia with their christmas bunnets on for their sunday afternoon performance in Buchanan Street in Glasgow last week. Photos wil appear here soon.

Sunday Morning In Ayr.

I was walking down ta quiet street in Ayr on sunday morning close to the ornate county buildings when I heard a shout from ahead of me. Two burly policemen had soezed a youth, thrown him part way over a garden wall and were slapping handcuffs on him. Onr policeman then leans over to the fetained person and roars in his ear.

'now will you f****** calm down'

before hoisting him into a police car and driving him away.

A but different then community policing in Silverton, I suspect.

Working Away.

Often, if you are out and about in the highways and byways of Ayrshire you will here the following conversation when two women meet.

Mary. 'Hi, Margaret, how are you doing'.

Margaret (in a resigned toms of voice) 'Hi Mary, Working away...Theres nothing else for it'.

Giving the impression that Margaret is totally enxlaved to whatever form of work it is that she does.

In reality, of course, Margaret probably was boogieing the night away at the local 'Grab A Granny Night as soon as she got her last pay.


Apologies for the non appearence of the blog over the last few days. I swtayed on a few days extra mainly to continue visiting a friend who i s currently in the Ayr hospital awaiting a hip operation. Normal service will now be resumed.


No, not the website run by the institute of ideas ctowd who now sem to be the latest fans of Boris Johnson, bit Spike is the name of the Hedgehog rescued by Louise from the jaws of a dog. Spike is alive and well and living in Louise's shed on a diet of wet catfood. Photos to follow soon, hopefully. Spike has now been designated the hedgehog on the blog.

Blog Back

The Blog wil be fully operational again later today. Sorry for the delayed restart.