dimecres, 18 de desembre de 2013

Sweet Bells - Kate Rusby #Barnsley

Res més complicat que la pregunta "d'on ets?". No ho sé. Mons pares i mons iaios vivien a un poble petit anomenat Blackerhill, i jo vaig viure allì fins als 7 anys. Però no vaig neixer allì, vaig neixer a un altre poble que es diu Chapeltown. Vam marxar de Blackerhill per a viure al poble del costat, Hoyland, i vaig viure alli fins els 18 anys - i mons pares encara hi viuen. Però si algu de fora de la zona vol saber d'on soc, sempre havia de contestar Barnsley, la ciutat "mare" d'aquests pobles, ja que no son gens conegut un cop surts del condado de South Yorkshire. Per tant, passo, o passava, la vida dient que era d'una ciutat que era una mitja-veritat. Del 18 als 21 anys, vaig viure a Birmingham per anar a l'universitat, i dels 21 fins ara a Tortosa, Catalunya. Aqui si algù em pregunta d'on soc, no puc dir ni Barnsley - com a molt els sona Yorkshire, o frases tipus "a prop de Manchester". 
Bé, tot aixo ve perque volia fer 4 frases sobre Barnsley, però he trobat una entrada a un altre blog que ho explica molt millor que jo, per tant, li he demanat permis per fer un "copiar i pegar" i ho verem a continuació - en anglès.
So, where are you from? Such an easy question but I have such a variety of answers. My grandfolks and parents lived in Blackerhill, as did I until the age of 7. However, I was born in a nearby village called Chapeltown. When I was 7, my family moved to the neighbouring town, Hoyland. However, outside a radius of 20 miles, these places are unknown so I usually just say/said I was from Barnsley - the "mother" city of these places, and a well-known town in England - for many reasons!
From 18 to 21 I lived in Birmingham trying to work out why I'd gone to university. Since then, I've been in Tortosa, southern Catalonia. In fact I've now lived here longer than in England. Nowadays, over here, I can't really say I'm from Barnsley either as a quick answer - the easiest solution is to say Yorkshire (the county), or something vague like "north of England", "somewhere near (but not too near I hope) Manchester".
Anyway, all this waffle is because I was going to write about Barnsley - but someone's beaten me to it, and wrote a much better description than I could ever do. So, with the author's permission, here goes:

Barnsley is a town of some 75,000 souls situated twelve miles north east of Sheffield. It was once the capital of the Yorkshire coalfield - a hard-working town for which the saying "where there's muck there's brass" was probably created. 
I have rarely had  reason to visit Barnsley. Once, when I was little, Dad drove us through the town and I observed first hand the black "mountains" that appeared to surround it - giant slag heaps made up of spoil from the local coal mines. It was a very different landscape from my rural birthplace in East Yorkshire. There was something of the "dark satanic" about Barnsley whereas we looked out over green or golden arable fields that stretched across the Plain of Holderness all the way to the Yorkshire Wolds. I could hardly imagine what it might have been like to grow up in all that muck and industry as my mother's family had done....

But remember to come back here to hear the Barnsley Nightingale ...

5 comentaris:

  1. Brian, are you feeling nostalgic? Your description of growing up in Barnsley would be of a different time to Yorky's Barnsley of today. Anyway ~ how do you celebrate Christmas in your part of the world?

  2. Hi, no not really nostalgic, but lots of students and friends ask me about my origins, and I was quite impressed with YP's write-up so ....
    When I was a kid , for example, the 70s, my life was based in Hoyland, only going to the Big Town - Barnsley - from time to time to get dragged round the shops. But it was pretty much the same as it is now, at least from a socio-cultural viewpoint. There did used to be big chain stores like Littlewoods and British Home Stores, but they closed down. In the 80s, I was a teen and spent more time in Barnsley - a 2 pence, 25 minute bus ride - mainly going to the library of the football. In 1983 I went once a week for a computer course given at the local tech college by a redundant miner, but spent most of the time playing video games in the nearby arcade!
    But, no, it's not changed much. Just more real shops closed down, and more second-hand and "everything must go" shops taking their places. Even MacDonalds closed down. It's a sad affair, but at the same time a real place with real people. Mixed feelings really!

    I'll be mentioning Catalan Christmas soon!
    Thanks for calling by :)

    1. Wow ~ even McDonalds closed down. I like real people ~ that's why I teach in the school I do.

  3. I am honoured that you drew readers' attention to my Barnsley post. The other day I was in Dunford Bridge which though in Barnsley is most unlike the Barnsley of people's imaginings.

  4. I hope your blog page has been able to cope with the avalanche of Catalan visitors anxious to find out why they should visit Barnsley.
    One of the special things about South Yorkshire is that, amzing countryside just minutes away from the hustle and bustle of the big cities' second-hand sales and fish shop queues ...