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March 16th 2024



26 members and guests arrived at the above venue on a fine, if slightly cold, afternoon. Hotpots and tea were served before the main business of the afternoon was conducted. 

Our chairman started proceedings, before the LAA president took over the meeting, while all the committee resigned en bloc, to be re-elected moments later. All the previous incumbents resumed their roles unopposed. 

Our president, Sid Calderbank, told us that the building had actually been a war memorial back when it was just a hut. Now this is a comfortable venue where regular entertainment takes place, with a games room and a fully stocked bar. 

After the official proceedings, Competition Secretary, Olive Riley read out the results of our five annual competitions, and the writers of all the wiining and placed entries received  a round of applause.  

A short comfort break followed, before everyone settled down, as Judith Addison, our chairman, announced guest speaker, Angela Danby.  

Angela spoke about her time as a journalist; a profession she was successful in for over twenty years, until raising her family caused her to rethink. Now she has another career as a public speaker recounting how journalism has evolved over the years. 

Her talk was informative entertaining and funny in many parts as she recounted excerpts from the Southport Visiter, which was established in 1844, when that was the correct spelling. Angela said the spelling we know today (visitor) was probably an early victim of Americanisation (or should that be Americanization)? 

Angela recalled that an attempt to rename it with the o instead of e was met by fierce opposition from locals and the spelling remained unchanged. 

One of the articles from that first year of the publication that Angela read out was an attempt by the male editor to give marriage advice, which really consisted of how lucky women are to find a good husband, and how futile their existence without being a housewife and mother. I imagine that view would have seen him lynched today. 

She also told us of the time she spent covering crime and recounted some very sad examples, including mistreatment of infants, which sadly still happens today. 

Angela then ended her talk and was presented with the customary red rose, we give all our guest speakers. She then fielded questions from the audience which she answered with aplomb. 

Sid rounded off proceedings with a rendition of a Lancashire poem in his own inimitable way before Judith bid everyone a safe journey home and the meeting concluded just before 4 p.m.

Report and pictures Peter Jones

For more pictures from this meeting please go to: LANCASHIRE AUTHORS' ASSOCIATION

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A Brief Report on The Lancashire Celebratory Meeting held in Chorley on Saturday 18th November 2023

The meeting, attended by twenty-three members and friends was opened by Sid Calderbank, our President who welcomed all present.
Apologies from twelve members were received by Judith, the Chairman.

A surprise guest, in the form of Tony Blagrove, Town Crier, was then introduced by Sid.
With fully operational bell, Tony proceeded to read the Lancashire Day Proclamation in fine fashion, ending with everyone standing to toast King Charles lll, Duke of Lancaster.

A wonderful hotpot was then served followed by delicious apple pie and cream, all washed down with drinks from the bar.

After a short comfort break, we were entertained by our new treasurer, Michael Jackson, who delivered an historical and very interesting talk about clogs and clog making. Michael’s knowledge was amazing. Michael brought along many different clogs from his huge collection, for us to see, as well as some clog making tools and information/photographic folders. At the end, Michael took questions, some from two guests from Yorkshire who had travelled especially to hear the talk.

Judith thanked Michael for his very informative talk. Sid then performed a dialect item to end the meeting.
The meeting closed at 4.50pm with Judith thanking everyone and wishing all a safe journey home.

Footnote: Gill had brought copies of the LAA Anthology 2023 to distribute to those members present and anyone else who wished to purchase a copy.


For pictures of this meeting, please click here


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Meeting of the LAA September 16th 2023 by Zoom


Eight members of the Association met electronically at 2.00 pm to be entertained by Tom Preston on the subject of ‘Lancashire Comedians’. While we were waiting for people to join, Gill James announced that the LAA Anthology was ready for circulation. Apologies had been received from Dan Forrester, Julie Lloyd Mullen.

Tom Preston was welcomed by the chairman, Judith Addison and began by putting on his “comedian’s hat” before giving a brief explanation of how his interest in Lancashire comedians had developed from writing a PhD thesis on Liverpool football and wondering why this part of the country had produced more comedians of note than any other part of the country of similar size. He mentioned such famous household names as Arthur Askey, Jimmy Clitheroe, Stan Laurel, Ken Dodd and Rob Wilton, not forgetting Eric Morecambe and Colin Crompton (the latter of the Wheel Tappers and Shunters Club) and Sooty, although Sooty’s operator, Harry Corbet was a Yorkshireman. He continued by explaining that before the C19th, Lancashire had been reported, by at least one person, as being a remote and backward area saved by the industrial revolution that gave rise to unhealthy living conditions, but also, happily to much greater social interaction.

Lancashire was then the most populous county after London and in the terraced streets were many public houses that provided entertainment as well as alcohol. These were the training grounds for performers who would graduate to the music halls, not forgetting the influence of Blackpool and the famous ‘Wakes Weeks’ when whole towns would shutdown for employees to have their annual holiday. Blackpool now has on the promenade, a ‘Comedy Carpet’ of famous comedic names and their catch phrases. Of such were the ‘Lancashire Lad’ comedians, who were always displayed as being ‘gormless’, an example being George Formby senior who used the pseudonym ‘John Willy’. The tradition continued with Les Dawson who, with Ray Barraclough, based their characters Sissy and Ada on Norman Evans’s ‘Over The Garden Wall’

Tom continued by naming other comedians whose acts had similar material. These included Frank Randall of Aspull, Hilda Baker, whose stage act was based on the height discrepancy between herself and her ‘stooge’ Cynthia, who was a man in drag and never spoke. Other names of note in similar vein were Jimmy Jewel, Joe Gladwin, who starred as Nora Batty’s husband in Last of the Summer Wine and the less well-known Dave Morris, who died in 1960.

When. a few years ago, a member of the University of Central Lancashire wrote that Lancashire comedians were a declining breed, Tom disagreed and demonstrated this by listing Peter Kay, Lee Mack, Victoria Wood, Caroline Ahearne,  Bobby Ball, John Bishop, John Culshaw and Steve Coogan. Other names from the ‘Golden Age’ of the C19th were Wilkie Barnes and Harry Tate; from World War II, Tommy Handley and Ted Ray; from the post war period, Thora Hird and Eric Sykes and more recently, Jimmy Tarbuck, John Inman, Mike Harding, Bernard Manning, Alexei Sayle and Craig Charles. Tom finished his talk by saying that today we have some up and coming Bolton comediennes such as Sophie Witham performing in the working class tradition. Throughout the talk Tom had changed hats as appropriate to his subjects and had provided examples of their stage material.

Our chairman thanked Tom for such an interesting and humorous talk and everyone applauded, A period of question and answer and some comments followed. After a comfort break, members entertained by reading their own writing:
Peter read his article, ‘Home For Heroes’ about the true meaning of being a hero as being someone who overcomes\ a disability with fortitude.

Peter read his article, Home For Heroes
Sarah read her short story, ‘The Pier’
David read his poem, ‘Anonymous’
Olive read her entry for the Brown Cup, ‘Slavery’.


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422nd L.A.A. MEETING


Saturday 17th June 2023

Members and guests attended the Awards Day at St. Mary’s Parish Centre, Chorley. The President, Sid Calderbank opened the meeting by welcoming everyone present. Olive Riley, who was chairing the meeting, apologised for changes having been made to the agenda and read the safety notice.

Apologies for absence were received from Judith Addison, Gill James, Peter Jones, Dea  Parkin, Dan and Angie Forrester, Heidi Lancaster, Sally and Ron Williams, Nick Oldham and Alison Chisholm.

The Awards ceremony was then held, the trophies and certificates were presented by the President, Sid Calderbank.

Before the presentations, Olive thanked the previous year’s winners for returning the trophies in a condition that required only a little polishing.

There had been 62 entries, one of which had been disqualified. The poetry judge, Sheila Clift, had commented on the high standard of entries.

The ‘Writer of the Year’ winner of the Rose Bowl, chosen by Nick Oldham, was Tom Ungless. with “Twentyseven”.

Madam Chair then introduced our guest speaker, Judy Beeston, who would speak about the life of Edith Rigby (nee Raynor), the famous Preston Suffragette. Judy began by setting up a display of material relating to Edith Rigby before donning a cloche hat typical of the style that Edith would have worn during the early years of the 20 th Century, to complete the outfit she was wearing, which was a replica of one Edith wore in a photograph.

She then took on the role of Edith to relate the significant features of her life. Edith, born in October 1872, was the daughter of a Preston doctor and attended the Penrhos Methodist College for girls in North Wales. Most girls at that time worked in industry in appalling conditions and Edith, being much concerned about their plight, was instrumental in improving these.

Aged nineteen and no longer a schoolgirl, she married a Dr. Charles Rigby, who was fifteen years her senior. He must have been a very nderstanding and tolerant husband, because Edith, by her actions, was clearly a free spirit with a mind of her own. She was the first  woman in Preston to ride a bicycle and horrified her neighbours when she and Charles were living in Winckley Square: she would ‘donkey stone’ (ie whiten) the front step of their home.

At that time, due to the rapid rate of industrial growth, Preston had the highest infant mortality rate in the country and a movement began to get women into Parliament. Edith naturally became involved and formed the Preston branch of the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU). She recruited women to become members of the Suffragette movement and with Christabel and Sylvia Pankhurst took part in a march to the Houses of Parliament. She was subsequently arrested many times, took part in hunger strikes and was subjected to force feeding. During World War I, she bought Marigold Cottage at Hutton, Penwortham near Preston and used the orchard to produce food for the war effort by growing fruit and vegetables and keeping bees and animals.

When Charles retired in 1926, the couple built a new house at Penrhos in North Wales but Charles died before it was finished and Edith moved to live there alone until she died in 1950.

In 1918, the government extended the franchise to men over 21 and to all women aged over 30 who met the minimum property requirements. Universal franchise for all persons, male and female was only achieved in 1928.

A vote of thanks to Judy Beeston was proposed by Michael L. Jackson This excellent talk was followed by a comfort break during which members showed much interest in the items Judy had displayed and were pleased to have an opportunity to talk to her.

The meeting resumed and the winning entries in the various categories were read by such writers as were present. Tom Ungless, David Lythgoe and Peter Foster.  

Finally, Michael Higgins read his dialect poem ‘As I read Sam Bamford’s Weaver Boy’. to end the meeting. An amusing conversation between the writer and Sam Bamford’s ghost.

It was good that Jean Blakely, author of one of the final eight stories in the Open Competition 2023, was able to join us and in recognition of her attendance she was presented with a red rose.

Olive Riley then closed the meeting by thanking those who had worked hard to make it a success, and all for attending. She wished us a safe journey home.

Pictures courtesy of David Kevill including Writer of the Year on our index page

For presentation pictures from this meeting, please click here

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113th Annual General Meeting March 18th 2023

A disappointing turnout of 16 people attended the AGM, where all the committee, except for the treasurer, were reappointed. One name was put forward for the vacant treasurer’s position and that person was unanimously appointed.

After the business end of things was wrapped up, Olive read out the results of the LAA competitions. Then we were treated to a presentation by Nick Mallion, ably backed up by our president, Sid Calderbank. The two have been

The subject of the presentation was William Hampson who was a long time member and committee member of the LAA. You could see it was a subject close to Nick’s heart as he spoke passionately about the man.

When we all entered the venue, we noticed that there was a framed photo against one of the windows, covered by a Union Flag. As Nick started his discourse, he peeled away the flag revealing a picture of a man in army uniform.

This picture, he told us, was taken in 1914 and the soldier, William Hampson had been called up to fight in World War One at the age of 37. Nick pointed out that Hampson already had a family by this time, unlike most of the eager young men he would face battle with.

Fortunately he came home safely, and having already written some poetry, joined Lancashire Authors Association in 1927. Soon he was published in the association’s Record and Red Rose magazine and won several awards, for his mostly dialect poetry.As Nick was talking, he handed out booklets containing some of Hampson’s work, and pictures of the man. Sid, being renowned for his delivery of such works, recited several of the poems, which were really excellent and Nick had brought along his guitar sang one of Hampson’s peom that he had written a tune to. Nick ended to rapturous applause for what was a really interesting and informative presentation. Thank you Nick!!!

The afternoon was a delight and everyone went away, hopefully fulfilled and appreciating dialect poetry a little more than they did when they arrived.

The chairman closed the meeting bidding everyone a safe journey home at around 4.20 p.m.

Peter Jones 2023

A Brief Report on the Lancashire Day Meeting

Saturday November 19th 2022

How great it was to be able to come together with fellow members and friends on Saturday 19 th November to celebrate Lancashire Day.

We were fortunate that Tony Blagrove, a friend of our president, was on hand as Town Crier to read the Lancashire Day Proclamation and toast His Majesty King Charles III, Duke of Lancaster.

Following the hotpot etc. and the usual formal business, we were delighted to finally enjoy the wonderful entertainment provided by Peter and Barbara Snape, Lancashire Folk Singers.

The twenty-eight strong audience also witnessed the presentation of the two special trophies; the Angus Butterworth trophy and the Bill O’ Bows trophy. The first being awarded, posthumously, to the Late James Lancaster whose daughters Heidi and Martine were present to receive it.

The Bill O’ Bows trophy was presented to Judith Addison, our Chair; who despite cracked ribs and other health issues during the year, has continued to work hard for the Association.

Congratulations to both.

The programme continued with Sid performing a replacement dialect item, the published
item having been withdrawn.

Gill was delighted to tell everyone about the LAA Anthology 2022, ‘Lancashire Writers of
today’. Members were able to collect their free copy and eight other copies were sold to
friends present.

To end the celebrations Sid performed another item from his vast repertoire, before Judith
thanked everyone for attending, wished all a safe journey home and a Happy Christmas.


For pictures of the above meeting, please click here

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A Brief Report on the A.G.M./Awards Day Meeting

Saturday 25 th June 2022

What a wonderful, uplifting meeting was enjoyed by twenty-four members, patrons and guests, meeting live for the first time in more than two years! It was so good to come together everyone was smiling.

The gathering was opened by our president Sid Calderbank who welcomed all present, expressing his delight at being able to meet face to face once more.

The tasty hotpot lunch was then served followed by tea and coffee. At 2.30pm the AGM commenced, the minutes of which will be sent out, as usual, prior to next year’s AGM.

Main Points:

Sarah Robin was elected as the new Secretary of the Association taking over from Olive Riley who had covered the role for many years.

Julie Lloyd Mullen was elected as the new Editor of the Newsletter. Julie was co-opted onto the committee earlier this year and did actually produce the June Newsletter which was sent out before this meeting. It is very good to have some younger people on the committee.

All other committee members were re-elected.

The proposal regarding complementary membership for students of the University of Bolton.

After some additional explanation as to how this would work, given by Gill James, the proposal was voted on. Those present unanimously agreed.

At the end of the business part of the meeting Olive Riley gave a heart-felt tribute to the late James Lancaster who had been a loyal member for many years.

After a short comfort break, the Awards ceremony took place; the trophies etc. being presented by Alison Chisholm, poet, one of our patrons and well known in the world of writing. The Writer of the Year was announced - Sarah Robin. Congratulations Sarah!

Finally we were entertained by Alan Roby who gave a very detailed and interesting talk about a Lancashire Lady, Miss Nelly Weeton. Alan has recently edited a book about this lady, spending several years researching and going through much archive material to complete the task. Alan very kindly donated one of the books to the LAA library collection.

The Title: ‘Miss Weeton, Governess and Traveller’ can be purchased through Amazon.

She was a remarkable woman!

Judith Addison, our Chairman, thanked Alan for his enjoyable talk then closed the meeting, wishing everyone a safe journey home.

For pictures of the event, please click here


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Report on the AGM/Awards Day Meeting
Saturday 26th June 2021

Despite the extension of Coronavirus restrictions preventing us meeting face to face at Lytham, it was important that the AGM was not further delayed. To undertake this meeting on Zoom was a new experience for all in attendance.
The actual minutes of the meeting will be sent out prior to the next AGM as is the norm.

It is necessary, however, to inform members now of decisions made, which will take effect this year.

Your New Committee
Chair   Judith Addison,            Treasurer    Terence Park,     Webmaster    Peter Jones,
Membership Secretary         Gill James,       Publicity Officer         Peter Jones,
Competition Secretary         Olive Riley,      Minute Secretary      David Lythgoe,
Editor  Still Vacant                Secretary        Still Vacant
(Acting Secretary       Olive Riley has agreed to this position for ONE YEAR ONLY.)

Two proposals were put forward:
 1)   Regarding the publication of the LAA Competition  Entries.

‘Future annual competition entries placed first, second, third, highly commended or commended be published in one annual booklet, along with the winner of the open flash fiction competition.’       Proposed Olive Riley.  Seconded Peter Jones.

Following positive discussions the members voted in favour of this proposal.

2)   Regarding the future of the Record.

‘In the event that the position of Editor is not filled, the details normally sent out in the Record go out to members, as a digital newsletter via e-mail. Any member without e-mail could still receive a copy by post.’  Proposed  Olive Riley.  Seconded Peter Jones.

Following discussions in which members spoke favourably of such a newsletter the proposal was amended to:

‘The details normally sent out in the Record go out to members as a digital newsletter via e-mail. Any member without e-mail could still receive a copy by post.’
Proposed Judith Addison.  Seconded Peter Jones.

All members voted in favour of this proposal.

The business part of the meeting was then brought to a close.

Presentation of Awards

Before the presentation of the awards took place the Writer of the Year 2021 was announced. The recipient is David Lythgoe for his poem, ‘A World Above.’ Congratulations David!  The poem will appear elsewhere in this Record.
Prior to the meeting all trophies and certificates had been delivered/sent to the winners and those placed in the competitions. As the winners’ names were read out they held up their trophies for all to see, they were congratulated and applauded. 

Barbara and Peter Snape preferred not to entertain by Zoom, but Peter did join the meeting. The entertainment was therefore given by those winners present, reading their winning poem or story.  We wish to thank them for taking part in this way. They are:
David Lythgoe, James Lancaster, Dan Forrester, Jeanette Greaves and Peter Jones who kindly agreed to read the Sonnet by Sally Williams as she was unable to be with us due to a fall.

The meeting ended in the usual way with a well- known recitation of ‘Sam, Sam, Pick oop tha Musket’ by Stanley Holloway, given by our President Sid Calderbank.

Olive J Riley

Footnote: It is hoped that the publication containing the competition winning items 2021 etc. will be ready for November 2021.


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A Brief Report of the Zoom Meeting held on Saturday 13th March 2021

Normally this would have been the Annual General Meeting, but the committee decided to defer it until we could meet face to face.

The meeting which replaced it was excellent. Twenty-seven people joined in on zoom, including one new member.
After the welcome from Sid, our President, we were treated to an extremely interesting talk by Connie Hyde, talented actor of stage and screen.

Connie spoke openly about her life, career; the good and bad times, her family and getting through lock-down.  A question and answer session followed.

The Annual Competitions’ results 2021 were then announced by the Competitions’ Secretary.

Following this we were delighted to hear beautiful music played by violinist Julie Proctor.

(Julie had mentioned on facebook that she was missing playing to an audience, so was invited to play for us – a zoom audience is better than no audience!) Thank you Julie.

Members and friends then entertained with readings of their own works, to bring the meeting to a close.
A very enjoyable afternoon.

Footnote:  Connie Hyde asked that her fee of £50 be donated to a charity. As she lives in Lancashire the committee decided to make the donation to ‘Maundy Relief’ a grassroots charity serving the people of Hyndburn.

Olive J Riley


Lancashire Authors’ Association - 110th Annual General Meeting

Saturday 14th March 2020 at St Mary's Parish Centre, Chorley

On a mostly sunny day, around twenty members and guests sat down to hotpot at a rather subdued meeting, which was hardly surprising given the present circumstances. Amongst them were two of our Patrons, author Nick Oldham and poet and lecturer Alison Chisholm.

After all had had their fill, we had the AGM. The committee resigned en bloc and the President accepted the resignation of secretary and minute secretary, Maeve Fagan and librarian, Brian Foster. There was already one nomination for librarian and that was filled by Professor Paul Salveson. Olive Riley agreed to fill the post of secretary on top of her own duties as Competition secretary and Gill James, our Membership secretary, agreed to take on the extra role as Minute secretary; both on an interim basis.

Then we were given an interesting insight into the life and career of Allen Clarke delivered by Professor Paul Salveson who has recently published a book about the poet and social activist who was born in Bolton and wrote under several pseudonyms, the most notable of which was Teddy Ashton.

In his talk titled “Teddy Ashton Resurrected,” Paul spoke of how he would like to see people reading Clarke’s work once more and in Bolton I believe that the council have made all his works available now. His Granddaughter is also due to write a book about him.

He went on to say that Teddy Ashton should never be pigeon-holed as his work was never one dimensional.

The talk was greeted with appreciation by the members present and after fond, contactless farewells, the whole event resembled the end of school when everyone wondered how long it would be before we could all meet again. Indeed, at the time of writing, some six weeks after the meeting, we are still no wiser on that count.

In a way we are lucky that we could all attend, as this was just a week before the lockdown. We can only hope that all our members and committee stay well and safe in these turbulent times and normal life can be resumed sooner rather than later.

* * * * *

413th LAA Meeting Saturday 16th November 2019
A Celebration of Lancashire

It was appropriate that the celebration was held in Rochdale as that was the place where, in 1909, a group of dialect writers met to celebrate the bi-centenary of the birth of John Collier.  Two years later the Lancashire Authors Association came into being.

The event started with the arrival of the Mayor and Mayoress of Rochdale Billy and Lynn Sheerin who were presented with roses by our Chairman Judith Addison.  Apologies for absence were received from Brian Riley and Brian Foster who were unable to attend due to illness.  The Mayor read the Lancashire Day Proclamation and everyone toasted the Queen, Duke of Lancaster.

As the hotpot had not yet arrived Sid, our President, sang for his supper, ‘Potato Pie’ by Randal Mundy of Stalybridge, encouraging everyone to join in the chorus of prayta pie, prayta pie. Olive then spoke about the history of the LAA and how it had developed over the years. Once there was a committee to run the organisation new members from all over Lancashire joined.  Early meetings were held in towns throughout the county and although most people did not have cars attendance at meetings was high.

Next came the presentation of two special awards.  The Mayor presented Peter Jones with the Bill O' Bows Trophy, this goes to a stalwart of the LAA, someone who works hard, supports or is a very keen member.  Unfortunately Brian Foster was not able to attend to receive the Angus Butterworth trophy. Brian has been a long standing member and committee member and truly has aims and ideals very much in tune with LAA.  The lunch arrived as the presentations were finishing and soon everybody was enjoying hotpot followed by apple pie and cream.

After lunch Carol Talbot gave a talk on Annie Kenney a working-class girl from Oldham who started work at the age of eight. She joined the Women's Social and Political Union in 1905 and went on to become an important organiser in the Suffragette movement.  Carol's book about Annie Kenney titled Working-Class Suffragette was recently published.

After this we were entertained by The Tin Pot Poets – Sally and Ron Williams who read several humorous poems they had written.  This was the third time they have entertained at LAA meetings. Their readings were interspersed with songs by Alyson Brailsford accompanied by John Pye on guitar.  For her first song, a poem by Edwin Waugh “Come Whoam to thi' childer and me” she was joined by President Sid Calderbank.  The audience sang along with her next item, another Edwin Waugh piece “A Lift on the Way.”  To conclude Alison continued the Edwin Waugh theme, this time ‘When the Sun Goes Down’ written in Standard English.

The Mayor and Mayoress should have left at 2 pm but stayed until 3 pm because they were enjoying the entertainment so much.  After this there was a table quiz for members, all the answers being about people and places in Lancashire.  The winning team received notebooks and pens as prizes and their winning score of 16 out of 20 showed their extensive knowledge about the county.   President Sid finished with a performance of “Where are the Blackburn Poets gone” by William Billington of Blackburn. Chairman Judith thanked all involved and closed the meeting at four pm. 

A very enjoyable afternoon.

* * * * *

LAA Meeting held on Saturday 21st September 2019

The afternoon commenced with the singing of ‘Happy Birthday ‘to L.A.A., led by President Sid Calderbank, who was then invited to blow out the candles on the birthday cake, kindly made for the occasion by Olive.



Despite the poor attendance by L.A.A. members, (only 2 other than committee members), a select group of guests and friends enjoyed an afternoon of celebration and bonhomie. Whilst the sun shone outside, those inside gave shining performances, in both Lancashire Dialect and Standard English. 


The purpose of the meeting was to celebrate the 110th birthday of the association. The birthday cake was served with tea and coffee early in the meeting. This was then followed appropriately by an excellent talk by Sid Calderbank on John Collier (Tim Bobbin), with reference to a biography written by Richard Townley, owner of the school where John Collier taught for several years.


Sid was ably assisted by members of Euxton Library Dialect Reading Group who performed, ‘The Dialogue of Tummus and Meary’, by John Collier.  This is now famous as his main published work. We were also treated to a sketch about a Fairground Dentist, where a person of no dentistry skills or instruments, other than a pair of pincers, set up a stall offering to remove teeth. This was well performed and very comical.

After a comfort break, a golden opportunity to socialise, readings of items of past members were given by Peter Jones, Judith Addison and Olive Riley, as follows:


‘Other Folk’s Childer’ by Joan Pomfret – Olive.


‘Another Spring’ by Benita Moore and ‘Girl in a Yellow Dress’ by Joan Pomfret – Peter.


‘Lancashire’s Beauty’ and ‘The Pennines’ by Ronald Y Digby – Judith.


Olive then read ‘Missing’ by Joe Wildman. This was part of a tribute to Joe who, sadly, died recently. Joe was a long-standing, hard-working and active member for many years. He was an excellent poet in both dialect and Standard English and won or was placed in, many competitions. A minute silence was then observed in Joe’s memory.


The final item came from Sid, our president who read, ‘A Sope o’ good, strong Tay’ by Thomas Baron of Blackburn.


Judith thanked all present for their attendance and contributions, wished everyone a safe journey home and closed the meeting at 3.55pm.


Footnote: Apologies were received from 8 members.

* * * * *

Saturday  1st June 2019

On a rather grey and rainy afternoon about 25 members and visitors attended the Awards meeting at our usual venue of Lytham Assembly Rooms.  The Mayor of St. Anne’s on the Sea, Cllr. Viv Willder arrived with her granddaughter and was greeted by our President Sid Calderbank and presented with a rose by our new Chairman Judith Addison.

Apologies were received from Elle-Marie Hinchcliffe, Sally and Ron Williams, Pauline Hutchinson, Ken and Liz Scally, and Nick Oldham.

Nick Oldham should have been the speaker but unfortunately he was ill and had lost his voice so our President stepped into the breach.  Sid gave a very interesting talk about dialect writers who had written about the Lytham area.  He started with a reading from John Trafford Clegg's book about the 1886 disaster when a ship named Mexico was grounded in a storm in the Ribble Esturary.  Lifefboats were sent from Southport and Lytham St. Anne’s. Sadly 27 lifeboatmen from the Lytham boat were drowned.  It was the worst loss of crew in RNLI history.  Sid followed this with information about Sir Charles Macara who was involved in the Manchester textile trade but who lived in Lytham.  He started what were called 'Lifeboat Saturdays'  that were street collections in towns all over the country raising funds for the RNLI.  Sid then recited a poem about the bravery of lifeboat-men by Samuel Laycock a dialect writer who lived in Blackpool.  He finished on a lighter note reciting what he called “the daftest poem he had ever read” and insisted the audience joined in with the chorus. 

This was followed by the presentation of the trophies and certificates by the Mayor.

The Writer of the Year 2019 is Tom Ungless. Congratulations Tom.

The Open Competition winner Susan Massey attended to accept her cheque.  Although there were entries from throughout the UK and some from abroad Susan only had to walk down the road as she lives in Lytham.  The Mayor then talked about her job both as Mayor of Lytham St Anne’s and as a member of Fylde Council.  

After a break for refreshments there was entertainment from the following members:

Terence Park an excerpt from his science-fiction writing.
David Lythgoe an exercise in clichés.
Christine McCherry, ‘Missing Dad’ a personal story.
Tom Ungless, his winning story, ‘Rosemary for Remembrance’.
Olive Riley  ‘You’, Susan’s winning Story in the Open Competition,
followed by two of her own poems, ‘Making a Difference’ and ‘Reality’.

To close the meeting our president spoke about the Rossendale Heritage Festival to be held in July this year.  Members are invited to take part in Library Readings taken from ‘A Rossendale Anthology’ compiled by Ronald Digby, edited by Jon Elliot, published by Rawtenstall Libraries, Art and Parks Committee.

Ronald Digby was once editor of LAA ‘Record’, a copy of this book is listed on the LAA Library database. ( Copies are also available in Lancashire Libraries.)

Dates for Library Readings are :

Wednesday 3rd July              Bacup                  1.30 – 3.00
Thursday 4th July               Haslingden              10.30 – 12.00
Thusday 4th July                Rawtenstall              2.00 – 3.30
Friday 5th  July                 Whitworth               2.30 – 4.00   

Anyone interested, choose your reading and turn up!

Dialect Workshop in the Whitaker Park Museum, Rawtenstall, Wed. 3rd July at 7.30.

Left: Open comp winner Susan Massey Right: Our own Tom Ungless

For more pictures from Awards day go to this link

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Lancashire Authors’ Association - 109th Annual General Meeting

Saturday 9th March 2019 at St Mary's Parish Centre, Chorley

On a blustery, rainy, day 21 people attended the meeting. Before official proceedings began, everyone enjoyed a hotpot lunch and a chat.

Once the business side of the meeting commenced, the  committee emerged with  two new members.

Chairman of the past six years, Pauline Hutchinson, resigned but will still retain her position on the committee as the editor of The Record – a job she has done for over twenty years.

At the handover, Pauline presented the new chairman, Judith Addison, with a cup and saucer that came into her possession when she took on the role in 2013. She said that she had no idea of its origin but thought it should be passed on to the new incumbent.

Dan Forrester, who has been treasurer for the past two years, also resigned and will be replaced by David Kevill.

Olive Riley thanked Pauline for her time as chairman and her continued long service as editor of The Record and Dan for his service as treasurer as he stepped in at a crucial time for the association and did a wonderful job. She then welcomed Judith and David to the committee.

President, Sid Calderbank then paid his own tribute and asked for a round of applause for Olive Riley, for all the work she does and has done for the past few years to keep the LAA on track.

Sid then presented the Bill O' Bows Trophy to James Lancaster for his stalwart support of the LAA over the past year, as James was unable to attend the last meeting when he should have received it.

Next it was entertainment time. Sally and Ron Williams who perform under the name of The Tin Pot Poets regaled the gathering with a mixture of dialect and anecdotal poems, helped out by Sally’s daughter Julie Proctor, who also read to give Sally a bit of a rest, as she has recently been unwell. They had the audience enthralled and sometimes erupting with laughter.

Then it was the traditional entertainment by the members. Participants included: Elle Marie Hinchcliffe, James Lancaster, Olive Riley, Ken Scally, Dan Forrester and Terence Park, who all entertained with a variety of poems, stories and extracts from their recent books.

The last to entertain was our President Sid Calderbank, who was originally going to sign off with a dialect poem, but asked Julie Proctor to join him on her fiddle. Apparently she has accompanied him many times before at his gigs around the country. They started with an Edwin Waugh poem: “Tum Rindle,”  which Sid sang and Julie played. They then performed “She’s a Lassie from Lancashire” as their encore. This song was first performed by Florrie Forde in the Music Halls around 1907. The result was a singalong and tumultuous applause at the end of the performance.

Terence Park, one of our newest members, captured the last song on video and there's a link to it under this report for anyone who would like to see it.

I have attended many AGMs in the past but something about the atmosphere of the whole day made this one stand out. Sid and Julie’s performance was the perfect way to bring it all to a close.

Judith, our new chairman, thanked all involved in organising the meeting and made a special mention to Tom and Heather Ungless for  serving the hotpot lunch. She then thanked all for attending and bade everyone  a safe journey home.

To listen to "Lassie from Lancashire" please click here

© Peter Jones 2019.  Pictures Peter Jones


For more pictures from the AGM, please click here


410th LAA Meeting
Saturday 24th November 2018

A Celebration of Lancashire

The meeting did not get off to a very good start as the door of Lytham Assembly Rooms was locked when we arrived to set up the room.  However, once we were inside we worked quickly and managed to get the room ready for the meeting. 

Apologies for absence were received from James Lancaster, Anne Bryan, Tom Ungless, Sid Calderbank, Brian Hollingworth and David Kevill.

The Deputy Mayor Tony Ford arrived at noon and was presented with a red rose by Chair Pauline Hutchinson.  After reading the Lancashire Proclamation followed by the loyal toast, “The Queen, Duke of Lancaster” he told us a little about himself.  He informed us that the Town Crier of St Anne’s would also read the proclamation at nine a.m. on 27th November, as he does every year. 

As the hotpot had not yet arrived, Olive spoke about the villages where no soldiers were killed in WW1.  These villages, two of which were in Lancashire, namely Arkholme and Nether Kellet, had never had War Memorials because there were feelings of guilt that they had escaped.  However, there were soldiers who had suffered terrible injuries and eventually it was decided that plaques would be put up in these villages naming all those who fought. This was arranged by the British Legion with support from some motor-cyclists and sponsorship.  There were also a few villages where nobody was killed in either war. These were known as Doubly Thankful Villages; Nether Kellet was one. Olive then read one of her poems titled Villages that Wept (Thankful Villages)
The lunch arrived as Olive was finishing and soon everybody was enjoying hotpot, followed by apple pie and cream. 

Next came the presentation of two special awards.  Olive said that James Lancaster had won the Bill O' Bows Trophy presented each year to a stalwart of the Association; a supportive member; someone who works hard for LAA. James fulfilled all of these qualities, but unfortunately was unable to attend the meeting to accept the award. Dan took over to announce the presentation of the Angus Butterworth trophy to Olive and spoke about all the work she has done over the years to keep the Association going. The trophy was then presented by Cllr. Tony Ford, Deputy Mayor.

Olive then read an article about the history of Uncle Tom's Cabin in Blackpool.  Pauline had prepared a Lancashire Quiz and many of us found out that we did not know as much about Lancashire as we thought we did.  The winning team of four received notepads and LAA pens as prizes.  After this, entertainment was provided by Peter and Wendy Snape, a folk duo who had performed at the AGM in March.  They gave us plenty of old Lancashire songs with choruses and encouraged everyone to join in. 

The meeting closed at 3.45 p.m. and next year’s Lancashire Meeting will be in Rochdale to celebrate the 110th Anniversary of the Association.


Report by Maeve Fagan Secretary: Pictures by Peter Jones

Footnote:  Olive’s poem can be read on the Members’ Page of the LAA website.

* * * * *


LAA Meeting September 2018

On Saturday 22nd September 2018 twenty-two people, members and visitors, gathered at Euxton Parish Church Community Centre for the LAA meeting. It was particularly pleasing to have members of the Lancashire Society and the Edwin Waugh Society join us on this occasion. Friends from the Euxton library Dialect Reading Group were also very welcome.

Apologies were received from six LAA members.


Sid Calderbank, our president, opened the meeting and expressed his delight at being able to greet such a mix of Lancashire groups.  Sid also extended a very warm welcome to our guest speaker, Rita Vaughan who was presented with the traditional red rose by Pauline Hutchinson, chairman.


Rita, researcher and author, gave a most interesting, in depth, illustrated talk on Samuel Laycock, Lancashire dialect poet.  She was ably assisted by Mark Dowding, Lancashire folk singer, who performed ‘Bowton’s Yard’ and ‘A farewell to Sam Laycock’.  Later, as part of the presentation, Sid Calderbank sang Laycock’s tribute to the twenty-seven lifeboat members from the Southport and St. Anne’s Lifeboats. These brave men, died on 9/10 December 1886, attempting, in very rough seas, to rescue the crew of ‘The Mexico’, a German barque which ran aground on the main bank off Southport.  Sadly all were lost.

Rita was thanked for her excellent talk by Olive Riley,Vice Chairman. 


Following a brief break for light refreshments organised by Tom and Heather Ungless, entertainment was provided by three LAA members, reading from their own work.

Olive Riley read ‘A Gradely Bunch o’ Lads’ telling of the huge loss of Lancashire men from the Accrington Pals in World War 1. This poem is published in her latest book, ‘A Lancashire Rose’. Olive then read an earlier poem, ‘Southport – 6.00 a.m.’

Elle Marie Hinchcliffe read three items, ‘A Tear for Pocahontas’, a rather saucy item about a priest and a young girl. ‘Moonsong’ about foxes, and finally, ‘The Day the Road Came’. David Lythgoe partnered by Tony Blagrove, a visitor, presented a very amusing piece, written by David, titled ‘Over the Garden Wall’ (Eat your heart out Mrs. Maloprop). If you weren’t there you can read this on our website.

As usual Sid brought the meeting to a close with a dialect item ‘Owd Comrades’ by William Baron, taken from ‘Bits of broad Lancashire’ 1888.


Pauline then thanked everyone for attending and wished them a safe journey home.


NEXT MEETING – SATURDAY 24TH NOVEMBER at The Assembly Rooms, Lytham.

12 noon start. Hot pot etc. to be ordered in advance.



Saturday 9th June 2018

On a warm and sunny afternoon about 25 people attended the Awards Day at the newly refurbished Lytham Assembly Rooms.  The meeting started with the arrival of the Town Mayor of St Annes Councillor Karen Henshaw who was welcomed by our President Sid Calderbank.  She was presented with the traditional red rose by Chairman Pauline Hutchinson.  A red rose was also presented to Tracy Simmonds from Acorn Community News who sponsored the Open Competition and to Neil White. 

Apologies were received from Charmian Coates and James Lancaster

Acceptance of the LAA 2017 Financial Statement followed, proposed by Maeve Fagan, seconded by Peter Jones. 

The guest speaker was Neil White, best-selling crime writer.  He started his talk by admitting that he was from Yorkshire but had lived in Lancashire since his early twenties.  After doing a law degree he became a criminal lawyer but was also writing stories in his spare time.  He wrote his first novel which was set in the USA and sent it off to numerous publishers but it was rejected by them all.  He decided to self-publish and had 1,000 copies printed and sold about 300.  He then found an agent and was told that his novel would probably sell better if it was set in England.  He has now had nine books published and gave a lot of interesting insights as to how the publishing industry works.  For example, a particular type of book will become popular such as psychological thrillers but by then it is too late to start writing in that genre as by the time it is ready for publishing the industry will have moved on to the next fashionable topic. 

After this the Awards Ceremony took place and the trophies were presented by Councillor Henshaw.  Our Competitions Secretary Olive Riley informed members that the committee had decided that if a competition is not run then the entries will be added to the winners of the other competitions to be considered for the award of Writer of the Year. This was the case with the Douglas Townsend competition 2018. 

The first presentation was to Richard Bramwell who won the Open Competition with his story Trial and Error.  He was presented with a cheque for £100 by Tracy Simmonds owner of Acorn Community News who had sponsored the competition. 

The Batty Cup was won by Elle-Marie Hinchcliffe for her poem A Knowledge of Geography. 

The William Baron Cup was won by Dan Forester for his short story Their Wait in Rust. 

The Mercer Cup was won by Elle-Marie Hinchcliffe for her story A Tremor of Violets. 

The Writer of the Year was Elle-Marie Hinchcliffe. 

After a break for refreshments entertainment was provided by the following members:

Tom Ungless, Christine McCherry, David Lythgoe, and Olive Riley. Richard Bramwell, although not a member, was invited to read his winning 100 word story.

The entertainment was brought to a close in true dialect fashion by our President Sid Calderbank.  

Elle-Marie Hinchcliffe - LAA Writer of the Year 2018. Well done Elle!!

For more pictures from this event, please click here

* * * * *

Lancashire Authors’ Association

108th AGM March 10th 2018

A brief Report

The meeting began at 12.30pm with a free lunch of Hotpot. Vegetarians were catered for with a mild vegetable curry.


A very warm welcome was extended to members and friends by the President, Sid Calderbank who was impressed by the turn-out.  Several new-members were attending for the first time.  Six apologies were received by the Chairman.

Before the business commenced members stood to pay tribute to those members who had died during the previous twelve months. In particular Tom Halsall, who had been a staunch member for many years and served on the committee as treasurer for 23 of those years.

(A most fitting tribute, kindly written by Michael Finney, was published in the Record already issued to members. Thank you Michael.)

The business part of the meeting went smoothly, the only change to the committee being the membership secretary. Gill had resigned and in the absence of any other nominees/ volunteers, Pauline Hutchinson offered to take on the role.

Dan Forrester, who has done an excellent job as treasurer for the past twelve months, has given notice that he intends stepping down at the next AGM or sooner if a replacement can be found.  VOLUNTEERS NEEDED.

The LAA Accounts

Due to the auditor being overloaded with other work, the LAA accounts were not returned to Dan in time to be produced at the AGM.  These will be published in the June Record, members will be invited to ask any questions they wish, and will receive answers.

At the Awards Day, June 9th 2018 at Lytham, members will be asked to accept the accounts. This will require someone to propose and second that they be accepted.

Should this occur in the future the unaudited accounts will be published prior to/at the AGM.

Writer of the Year

The proposal concerning selection of The Writer of the Year which was put to the AGM was accepted.


The Annual Competitions’ Results were then announced and will soon be placed on the website. They will of course also appear in the next Record.


Excellent entertainment then followed with a sing-a-long led by Peter and Barbara Snape, a wonderful, Lancashire, folk singing duo, who performed for at least an hour.  After this enjoyable session, entertainment by the following members brought the meeting to a close: Dan Forrester, Carol Talbot, Olive Riley, Elle Marie Hinchcliffe, Ken Scully, Dana Nadeau and our President Sid Calderbank with a real dialect item.

Everyone present agreed that the new seating arrangement created a more convivial  atmosphere.




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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