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Report on Lancashire meeting 2017 at
St. Andrew’s Methodist Church, Rochdale

Fun, Laughter, Toe Tapping and Good Food

On Saturday 18th November, members and friends were treated to hotpot etc.,apple pie and cream and a wonderful afternoon of true Lancashire entertainment, when attending Lancashire Authors’ Association’s Lancashire Celebrations.
Dialect poems by Edwin Waugh through to those of present day Lancashire Poets, were all a part of the programme.

Entertainment was provided by the very talented, Lancashire Folk-singer Mark Dowding, who kept things moving with songs from his extensive repertoire.

The Rossendale Cloggers themselves kept moving as they performed clog dance after clog dance, until they had flushed faces and were out of breath. Toes were tapping along as the audience was taken back to a time when clogs were standard footwear for many people in the County.

LAA President Sid Calderbank was due to perform some of his well-known dialect recitations, but although present, he had virtually no voice so had to bow out. He did, however, accompany Mark for one item, playing the ‘bones’. A talent he possesses, of which many were unaware.  

Sid’s spot was taken by ‘The Tinpot Poets’ Ron and Sally Williams, members of the Edwin Waugh Society. Their Lancashire poetry was very funny and in true dialect style, quite saucy, “Naughty Poetry” Sally called it. A good laugh all round.

Olive Riley then read a poem, ‘A Bit O’ Fun’ from her new book ‘A Lancashire Rose’.  The Book is dedicated to the Late Rita Jones and is being sold to raise funds for the East Lancashire Hospice where Rita died last December.
Rita was a long-standing member of L.A.A. always ready to help in any capacity. She also served on the committee as Publicity Officer. Earlier in the afternoon, in special recognition of her service, The Bill O’ Bows trophy and a certificate were presented posthumously to Rita by the Mayor of Rochdale, Cllr. Ian Duckworth. They were received by her daughter Catherine and grand-daughter Keira. The trophy will be held by the family for 12 months. Husband Peter, LAA webmaster, was also present.

The final word of the event was left to LAA Librarian, Brian Foster who read the poem ‘Owd Pinder’ by Edwin Waugh to close the proceedings.

For pictures from this event, please follow this link



A small but very appreciative group of members gathered at St. Mary’s Parish Centre for the 406th meeting of LAA. Apologies were received from 10 members.

In the absence of the Chairman, Olive Riley, Vice Chairman, conducted the meeting.

After the welcome, presentation of the roses and various announcements, it was Olive’s pleasure to introduce Sid Calderbank, our new president and to perform his induction by placing the Presidents’ Jewel around his neck.

Sid explained he was pleased to be the new President, but surprised at being invited to take up the position as he was not an author. He spoke of his love of all things Lancashire, in particular the dialect and history. Sid is involved with other Lancashire societies and hopes that together we can find the magic which will encourage new members.

The Speaker Angela Danby, then gave a most interesting and informative talk about her time with the Southport Visiter, briefly as a young reporter and more fully as a crime reporter. The latter she found was often exciting, with opportunities to go up in the police helicopter.  It was necessary to work closely with the police which gave rise to several bulletins and requests for witnesses to various crimes being placed in the paper.

A vote of thanks was ably given by Peter Jones, before we broke for refreshments, a thirty minute opportunity to enjoy socialising with others present.

Entertainment by members followed with readings by Charmian Coates, Christine McCherry and Elle Marie Hinchcliffe.  Sid Calderbank then read the first ‘Crack’ from a book called ‘Cracks from a Cobbler’s Seat’ by Robert Rowe.  Dialect such as that has not been heard very often at LAA meetings.

Brian Foster our Librarian then read the dialect poem, ‘A Lancashire Mon’ to close the meeting.

The Vice Chairman then thanked those members who had served the refreshment and everyone for coming, wishing them all a safe journey home.


LAA Library, within Accrington Library will be open and manned from
10am -4pm on Thursday 12th October 2017. A wonderful opportunity to browse the shelves and find out what a treasure trove it is.

Lancashire Meeting: - Please note – The start time of this meeting is 12 noon, NOT 1pm as stated on the poster in the September Record.

Olive J. Riley

Vice Chairman.

To see pictures from this meeting, please click here

* * * * *

Saturday 10th June 2017

On a cool and showery afternoon about 30 people attended the Awards Day at Lytham Assembly Rooms.  The meeting started with the arrival of Deputy Mayor Elect of St Anne’s Councillor Carol Lanyon who was welcomed by Chairman Pauline Hutchinson and presented with the traditional red rose. 

Apologies were received from Lily Driver, Dana Nadau, Tom Halsall, Mary Cardwell, Lilian Boucher, Carol Talbot, Steve and Chrissie Keelan, Jeanette Greaves and Jill McDonald Constable.
Also Sid Calderbank, who was ill. 

The committee are delighted that Sid has accepted their invitation to become the next LAA President, and had planned to inaugurate him at this meeting.

The first item was a film made by Haywards Heath Movie Makers from a story by one of our members Peter Jones.  The story was titled Cause for Concern but this was changed for the film version to Shock Treatment.  The theme for the story was Drama Queen. It was one of just two entries from LAA for the ‘Write a story for a Film Challenge’ set us each year by the Movie Makers.

This was followed by David Evans, our guest speaker, who gave a very interesting talk on Blackpool's Hidden Heritage.  He told us that Blackpool got its name not from a black pool but a black pull which is an old word for a stream.  It was the first holiday resort set up entirely for the working people of Lancashire in the 19th century as most other resorts were developed from places visited by the middle classes.  He gave many facts about the town that were not known by most of the audience.  For example, Beatrice Potter was cremated in Blackpool, Amy Johnson flew to Blackpool to visit her aunt and her final flight was from the local aerodrome and Jaguar Cars started in Blackpool.

After this the Awards Ceremony took place. First to be presented with his award and certificate was, Neil Wilson, winner of the 2016 Open Flash Fiction competition. We were delighted that Neil was able to be with us, having travelled over the border from Yorkshire. (He enjoyed the afternoon so much he is thinking of joining LAA.)

The trophy for the Batty Cup, went to Elle-Marie Hinchcliffe for her poem Ghosts.
The Mercer Cup was won by Dan Forrester with his story, The Field Trip.
The writer of the year was Elle-Marie Hinchcliffe 
All trophies were presented by Councillor Carol Lanyon.

Dan Forrester, LAA treasurer, spoke briefly about the National Association of Writers’ Groups (NAWG) and the opportunities available to members. LAA has recently joined this association.

After a break for refreshments entertainment was provided by the following members:
James Lancaster, Dawn Prestwich, Christine McCherry, Maria Bertolone.

Neil Wilson also read his winning story – Life after Death.

It was good to have our patron, Melinda Hammond and her husband Terry join us on this occasion, and we must thank Melinda for bringing free copies of her next book, due out in September.
We were also joined by Carol Fenlon, one of the competition adjudicators.  

For pictures of the above please click here

Brief Report on A.G.M of the Lancashire Authors’ Association on the 11th of March 2017.

Tom Ungless gave an interview on Radio Lancashire on the morning of the meeting publicising the Lancashire Authors’ Association meeting. In addition he visited various Library’s/ Writing groups and left details of the meeting. Peter Jones also posted it on several Facebook pages /forums. Despite this there was a disappointing turnout.

The meeting began with a welcome to those present.

This was followed by a Silent Tribute to members who had died since the last AGM; in particular Rita Jones our Publicity Officer.

The A.G.M. reports had been posted to members in advance and proved to be helpful in shortening the time taken up in the formal part of the meeting.

The Officers standing for the committee were elected, but there is still a vacancy for Assistant Competitions’ Secretary following the resignation of Chrissie Keelan.

The proposal to increase subscriptions was defeated. Membership fees will remain as at present.

With the business over, refreshments were served including cake and biscuits.

Christine McCherry read a poem she had written called ’Welcome Lancashire Authors’

The entertainment programme began with Callum Thomas, a young musician from Oswaldtwistle playing Keyboard and singing ‘Hallelujah’.  He followed this with some of his own compositions.

Alison Chisholm, patron of the L.A.A. gave an entertaining performance of some of her poetry.

We were then treated to an interesting and informative talk by Nick Oldham, best-selling author of crime fiction.

To conclude, Callum played more of his own work as well as classics like David Bowie’s “Life on Mars”

The meeting ended with the announcements of the winners of the 2017 competitions.

These results will be put on the website shortly.


Christine McCherry

LAA Member

Pictures by Peter Jones and Dan Forrester

Astley Hall, Chorley. (Sunday 27th November 2016)

Astley Hall came alive and Lancashire Authors were there.

Although it was 27th November, Christmas was in the air.

In this sixteenth century building, a tree stood proud and tall,

Santa’s sleigh of red and gold was right there in the beautiful hall.

My mind drifted back in time, to the days when this place was a home,

A huge, log fire would burn in the grate and the table with food would groan!

Ladies and Gents in their finery would dance the night away.

“Hello” said a voice close beside me, bringing me back to today.

A small group of L.A.A. members had joined the activities there,

They took it in turns to do readings, from their works, as they sat by the stair.

Visitors engaged with members, beside the interesting display,

Bracketed by two banners advertising the L.A.A.

Outside were other attractions, clog dancing, Morris Men and bands

The Town Crier making announcements, all day lending a hand.

L.A.A. had its star attraction, from Southport, a published poet came,

Well known across the country – Alison Chisholm of ‘Writing’ fame.

Alison read some beautiful poems selected from her latest book.

Passers-by, hearing her words, stopped, to listen and to look.

Around 3 p.m. it went quiet, so we packed up our things on display

And feeling the day had been a success, set off, each going our separate way.

* * * * *

Thanks for giving of their time go to: Tom and Heather Ungless, Dea Parkin, Jeanette Greaves, Pam and John my two friends from Bristol and last, but not least, our patron Alison Chisholm.

During the afternoon I was delighted to present Alison with the L.A.A. Angus Butterworth Trophy.

This trophy is awarded each year to someone whose aims and ideals are in line with those of Lancashire Authors’ Association.


© 2016 Olive J Riley 

* * * * *

Report on the Lancashire Meeting

Saturday 19th November 2016

Lancashire is just as much a home to snow as it is to cotton mills, so a touch of wintry weather isn’t going to keep lovers of the county’s literature, music and history from the 2016 Lancashire Day.

The event was again held in Rochdale, the birthplace of the LAA, and was opened by Olive Riley passing on the apologies of those who couldn’t attend before presenting Lancashire roses to the Mayor and Mayoress of Rochdale, Cllr Ray Dutton and Cllr Elaine Dutton. The Mayor read the Lancashire Day Proclamation and led a toast to The Queen, Duke of Lancaster.

The entertainment commenced with Tony Stone and Tony Henry from the amateur dramatic society Poulton Drama, who recounted their participation in the project “Dream 2016”. As director and actor respectively, they were part of an ambitious collaboration between the RSC and local amateur groups, along with a total 650 children, to stage a production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in fourteen locations throughout the UK to celebrate 400 years since the Bard’s death.

Their journey was one of auditions, rehearsals, intensive training days and even, for Tony Henry, a trip to hospital after coming off second best in a movement workshop. Nobody ever said Shakespeare was easy, but that was nothing compared to the two-minute dance video they had to make to show off their skills.

Their hard work eventually led them to seven shows at Blackpool’s Grand Theatre, but it didn’t stop there; they were such a success that the RSC invited them to top off Dream 2016 with two performances in Stratford.

Tony Henry rounded off their entertaining talk with a monologue from Bottom, his role in the play,  which was extremely well received.

We were then treated to some traditional Lancashire folk music from Mark Dowding with his accordion, banjo and guitar. Mark gave us a quick history of each song, and has such a natural and entertaining style that the room was soon singing along to “We come a cob-a-coalin’ on Bonfire Neet!”

Next up was Burnley poet Mervyn Hadfield who went down a storm with his collection of witty poems, including one about Spinnach the Cat!

It was time to break for tea and we were treated with sandwiches, vol au vents and Chorley Cakes. Quiz sheets were also circulated, written by Maeve Fagan and Brian Foster to test our knowledge of Lancashire history and the meaning of words in the traditional dialect. Answers would be revealed later on …

Unfortunately the Mayor and Mayoress had to leave after tea; we were after all their third engagement of the day but not their last, so our thanks go to them for taking the time to join us.

The entertainment continued with Mervyn and Mark completing their sets, and finally the answers to the quizzes were given by Maeve and Brian and the two winners, each presented with a red rose.

A very well-attended and thoroughly enjoyable Lancashire Day concluded for another year.

A big pat on the back to Olive for managing and hosting the event, and also thanks to those that helped by serving drinks and food and making sure the day went as smoothly as it did.


Written by Dan Forrester. Top picture courtesy of Mayor's Office. All other pictures Catherine Jenkinson and Dan Forrester

Rose on front page Catherine Jenkinson


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