by TERRY SPENCER B.A.(Hons), Ph D.
The rich diversity of Knottla nicknames has a long pedigree. In
medieval times the word ‘eek’ denoted an additional item, defined in
later eras as ‘also’ (1) Thus, a familiar or humorous name given to a
person or thing in place of, or in addition to, the real name was an eek
name (i.e. one used for the purpose of identification), the ‘n’ of ‘an’
being elided with ‘eek’ to produce a ‘neek’ name which by dint of usage
became linguistically corrupted to produce the common noun, ‘nickname’.
In his amusing study of local characters, the late Frank Chambers
provides a tantalising glimpse of the genre, prefacing his examples by
"How did nicknames originate?
That’s what I want to know
Magic Charlesworth’s wicket keeping skill
Earned him his name, no bother
But where do we get Shewdy
The nickname of his brother?" (2)
Chambers then produced a series of stanzas containing upward of forty
By his query, the Knottingley Laureate touched upon the fundamental
dilemma: that while the nicknames bestowed on people of an earlier
generation are frequently remembered by succeeding generations, the
origins of such sobriquets are far less frequently remembered.
Chamber’s mental excursion concluded;
"I think we should a parchment scribe
A really worthy cause
To keep alive such nicknames
As Yawnucks Tomlinson and Twisler Vause." (3)
It was in the course of a recent conversation with Roger Ellis that the
subject of nicknames arose, following which, in an idle half-hour, I
casually began to compile a list of those I recalled. My list quickly
exceeded fifty in number and I was seized by a natural desire to list as
many more as I could obtain. In this desire I was greatly assisted by
Ron Gosney and Roger Ellis whose enthusiasm to compile a comprehensive
list was the equal of my own. It was Roger who drew my attention to the
work of Frank Chambers which, while I was familiar with and had long
admired Chamber’s work, I had failed to remember in the context of the
This essay then is an attempt
"a parchment [to] scribe".
More than that, to analyse, categorise and where possible, define the
origins of local nicknames and where such defy explanation or analysis,
compile a list for the historic record and thus, in acknowledgement of
the prescience of Frank Chambers, "…keep alive such nicknames."
Two of the earliest known local nicknames have religious connotations
and were originally conferred as proper forenames. Kilham Horton was
named after the Reverend Alaxander Kilham, an associate of the Methodist
leader, John Wesley. Following Wesley’s death in 1791, Kilham became
associated with the dissident faction which led to the foundation of the
New Methodist Connexion and the ultimate establishment of the Primitive
Methodists at Knottingley about 1818. Nor was Kilham Horton’s forename a
singular example, a Kilham Johnson also being recorded.
Kingdon Hirst was a further name with biblical influence and a sin the
case of ‘Kilham’ the name was bestowed upon succeeding generations of
each family as a nickname.
The hereditary factor is a noticeable element with regard to many
nicknames. ‘Tiny’ Firth, a tall man, left a nickname which was applied
to his equally tall son, Eric Firth. Frank ‘Dobber’ Sutcliffe, ‘Happy
Joe’ Bagley, ‘Clocky’ Burton, ‘Gully’ Maeer, ‘Slasher’ Towell, ‘Killer’
Kemp, ‘Wiffy’ Brooks, ‘Wag’ Robinson, ‘Pum’ Askin and ‘Scuffer’ Scholes,
are all examples of nicknames bestowed by local society on second and
third generation issue, although in most cases neither the bestowers nor
the recipients can define the meaning or origin of the inheritance.
A number of nicknames of the late nineteenth and early twentieth
centuries were those of men employed in the local glassworks,
particularly those belonging to the bottlemaking fraternity. The
nickname often arose from some aspect of working practice or incidents
arising during the process of production and were commonly bestowed in
jest on apprentices attempting to master techniques demanded by the
various stages of the craft. ‘Puffer’ Hawksworth, a glassblower who
learned his trade in the late nineteenth century, was probably named for
his blowing expertise. My adoptive father, was referred to as ‘Cheeky’
Spencer, not because of a rude disposition but from his distended cheeks
during the process of bottle blowing. Indeed, ‘blowers’ cheeks often
became almost transparent and instances are recorded when they burst.
Owing to the intense heat of the furnace it was necessary for the
glassmakers to drink prodigious quantities of liquid in order to prevent
dehydration. Most of the men drank beer which in the era of unrestricted
hours of sale was freely available. One who preferred to drink lemonade
was George Penty who therefore gained the lifelong nickname of ‘Pop’
Penty. Valentine ‘Gobby’ Gill may be another who owes his nickname to
association with the trade rather than to verbal facility although he
and others of his family were involved in breaking up discarded boats.
One of the glassmaking fraternity, George Dodd, was nicknamed ‘Doddy’
or ‘Dodder’. I remember him when, withered and worn by age and hard
labour, he was one of a small number of superannuated faithful retainers
who were allowed to undertake light casual work sweeping up the machine
shops and warehouses at the glassworks long after their manual skills
had been supplanted by machines. One of the indignities of age was that
such men were occasionally the butt of insensitive jokes and remarks.
Little did I, or his detractors realise, that as a young resident at the
Island, Aire Street, ‘Doddy’ had saved no less than eleven people from
drowning and had received a public testimonial to his bravery from
Knottingley Urban District Council. (5) Another ‘retainer’ with
bottlemaking connection was ‘Nuts’ Buckley, though the origin of his
nickname is less apparent.
‘Happy Joe’ Bagley was yet another ex glassmaker who became something
of a legend in the 1930s through his depiction of ‘mammy’s darling Boy’
at the local carnival. Dressed in jersey and short trousers and holding
a balloon on a string in one hand and a large jam-spread breadcake in
the other, from which he would take a periodic bite, thus smothering his
face in jam, ‘Happy Joe’ was the hit of the events. (6) The
characterisation is still recalled by some of the more elderly residents
of the town.
‘Happy Joe’ was an hereditary nickname inherited from his father as
was his flair for capturing the attention of the public as shown by the
occasion when, fully dressed, ‘Happy’ Senior decided to entertain a
large crowd attending the annual Feast on the Flatts by jumping into the
river. (7) Many other nicknames doubtless had glassworks origins but are
too abstruse in nature to be defined within the context of the
Whilst recently researching the history of Knottingley Silver [Prize]
Band, I was struck by the profusion of nicknames belonging to past
generations of bandsmen. ‘Fatty’ Chapman, ‘Spug’ Hargraves, ‘Joker’
Johnson, ‘Maggie’ Murphy, ‘Gully’ Draper and ‘Tiffy’ Hodgson, ‘Gully’
was a term applicable to another individual, namely ‘Gully’ Maeer, and
by extension, his son, Fred, but what was the meaning of the name? In
the case of ‘Tiffy’ Hodgson, the man himself has explained that it was
originally ‘Wiffy’, being a pet name bestowed by an elderly aunt.
Through usage and mis-pronouncement the name was transformed to ‘Tiffy’.
A similar metamorphosis concerning a similar name, is seen in regard to
‘Wiffy’ Brooks. It is believed that the nickname arose from Clifford
Brook’s portrayal of a character named ‘Wifey’ in a play produced by a
church drama group and was gradually transformed through linguistic
A further example of the process of transformation is provided by
reference to a nickname of a slightly later generation. Raymond Oakes
was nicknamed ‘Pancho’ by his friend Stansfield ‘Tippy Toes’ Greenwood
after a dark featured, swarthy Mexican character in a popular comic to
whom it was considered Oakes had a passing resemblance. Over time the
original nickname developed as ‘Panshine’, presumably through word
association with the ubiquitous scouring powder of the War years. It is
claimed that ‘Pancho’ Oakes was less than pleased with the adaptation.
Appearance and personal mannerisms often dictated bestowal of a
nickname. Aside from the obvious and frequently insensitively
embarrassing terms such as ‘Fatty’, ‘Lanky’, ‘Ginner’, ‘Shorty’, and
their slightly (but little) more imaginative inversions such as ‘Slim’
and ‘Giant’ for individuals who were the antithesis of such description,
which I mainly forswear in this essay, there are other illustrative
examples. Harry ‘Weary’ Jackson was so named because his heavily-lidded
eyes invariably appeared half closed, giving him a tired mien. Harry
‘Lacquer’ Robinson was so named for his well groomed and creamed mane of
jet black hair. Less attractively, Johnny ‘Spit-a-Gallon’ Miller’s
sobriquet is self-explanatory (a habit induced perhaps by working in the
hot, dry conditions of a bottle hole?) as is that of Harold ‘Teacakes’
Hargraves. A further culinary influence is evident in Eddie ‘Rabbit’ /
‘Rabbit Gravy’ Harrison’s nickname which arose from his frequent
excursions with his ferrets in search of a rabbit dinner.
‘Yawnucks’ Tomlinson was an old Knottla character so well known by his
adopted name that few used, or even knew, his surname. Streetwise, and
full of guile, ‘Yawnucks’ effected an aristocratic air by wearing a
monocle. Many tales were told of ‘Yawnucks’ quick wittedness and
opportunism. While many of the tales are doubtless apocryphal others are
no doubt true, for example, the following incident.
Entering Knottingley Town cricket field one mid afternoon, ‘Yawnucks,
and a friend unsuccessfully tried to cadge cigarettes from various
acquaintances. One, having rejected the supplicants, then asked
‘Yawnucks’ if he had heard the winner of the three o’clock race. "why?
Has Tha got a bet on?" asked ‘Yawnucks’. Upon being told that his
acquaintance had a bob each way on ‘Bluebell’, ‘Yawnucks’ stated that it
must be his lucky day as ‘Bluebell’ had won the race. The delighted
punter joyfully handed out his cigarettes before scurrying off to
collect his winnings. ‘Yawnucks’ mate pointed out that he could not
possibly know the outcome of the race to which ‘Yawnucks’ agreed,
adding, "but we got a cig’ out of it dint we?"
A further example of ‘Yawnucks’ quick-wittedness is revealed in the
following tale. On a visit to Leeds ‘Yawnicks’ and a small group of
mates were walking along Boar Lane and passing a shop with empty windows
one of the group said "Sitha. A’ wonder what they sell there?" A
man who was standing in the shop doorway could not forbear to show his
contempt for the Knottla bumpkins and said aloud, "Idiots",
whereupon ‘Yawnucks’ replied, "Idiots eh? Tha must a done a good
trade then ‘cos tha’s selled ‘em all!"
Life was more tragic for some of ‘Yawnucks’ contemporaries. Billy
‘Buller’ Wild was one of the glassblowing fraternity who in the early
days of last century was regarded as one of the smartest and best
dressed young men in Knottingley. Thwarted in love, ‘Buller’ suffered
from severe depression and fell into a mental and physical decline which
resulted in him losing his job and his lodgings. For two decades he
lived in a cave in one of the local limestone quarries, spending his
days touring the town living on cups of tea and food from former
workmates and sympathetic supporters. Given the harsh conditions, allied
to the severe rationing of food during the War one can easily imagine
the effect on ‘Bullers’ health. During the bitter winter nights ‘Buller’
would gain unofficial access to Bagley’s glassworks in order to sleep
under the hot furnace tank. One evening in the harsh winter of 1947
‘Buller’ was discovered in a seriously ill condition. A doctor was
summoned and ‘Buller’ was diagnosed as being in need of hospital
treatment. Being in such a vermin’s condition, however, he was denied
the use of an ambulance. It was said that he was taken to the Headland’s
Hospital, Pontefract, on the back of the Council dust cart.
The story has a fairly happy ending. Discharged from hospital ‘Buller’
was granted residence in Northgate Lodge, part of the former Pontefract
Workhouse, transformed by the recently established national Health
Service. For some years thereafter, ‘Buller’ could be seen within the
town, clean and tidily attired, until his death in the 1950s.
Another semi-tragic figure whose nickname belied the circumstances of
his life, was Fred ‘Cheerio’ Ellis who initially worked on the railway
until incapacity from an accident forced him to undertake lighter, more
As a one man band (a popular phenomenon in the 1920s) ‘Cheerio’ earned
a living as a street entertainer, singing, reciting monologues, playing
a brass whistle, telling jokes and posing conundrums for pennies.
‘Cheerio’ also advertised in the local paper as a racing tipster and
served as the bellman, town crier and official bill poster.
A resident of Back Lane Lodging House (formerly the Bluebell Inn)
until its closure on sanitary grounds in 1924, ‘Cheerio’ then lived at
Mr. Crapper’s (aptly named?) lodging house at Ferrybridge, and died in
1927 aged 53.
If Frank Chamber’s description of ‘Buller’ Wild
"…with long hair and ginger beard"
suggests a scary figure who was, nevertheless,
"a really kind of harmless chap and not one to be feared",
is correct, and it undoubtedly is, then the same dispensation applies
to ‘Bob Bunks.’ Robert ‘Bob Bunks’ Mountier, the scion of a pauper
family resident at Knottingley as early as the beginning of the
nineteenth century, was a one legged man who wore a wooden leg which
made a thump as he walked which was rather frightening to local
children. Some mothers, aware of this fact, used to coerce their
siblings into good behaviour by threatening to send for ‘Bob Bunks’.
Glassmaking apart, occupation was an influential factor associated
with nicknames. In the case of ‘Mucjk Boat’ Johnson both trade and
appearance played a part. Wearing a top hat and a waistcoat from which
dangled a watch and chain, this genial soul worked as a scavenger,
emptying ash pits and middens and disposing of the night soil from earth
closets, (of which there was still a profusion as late as the 1930s) his
appearance belying the nature of his work.
Another occupational nickname was that of Alf ‘Farmer’ Robinson.
‘Farmer’ looked after the draught horses at Bagley’s glassworks but with
his trilby hat, twill trousers and leggings and tweed jacket looked
every inch a farmer.
‘Legger’ Sweeting was so named because he had wide experience as a
cattle driver, walking beasts from markets as far away as Selby and
York. Invariably dressed in flat cap, Mackintosh and gaitered trousers,
‘Legger’, who had a disabled arm, could be seen carrying a billycan by
the handle, clutched between his teeth.
‘Doody’ Braim was a farmer with a holding located at the top of
Womersley Road while ‘Porky’ Taylor, an Aire Street butcher, was so
designated in order to distinguish him from Arthur (and later, Tom)
Taylor who owned a butcher’ shop next door.
‘Clocky’ Burton belonged to a family of watch and clockmakers who were
responsible for the installation of the public clock on the front of the
Ropewalk Methodist Chapel in 1884, which was the only public clock in
the town before one was affixed to St. Botolph’s church some forty years
Nicknames were not uncommon amongst teachers. ‘Bull’ Coward’s may have
arisen purely as a play upon his surname although he possessed a
bellowing voice which, belying his gentle nature, may have been an
influential factor. ‘Proddy’ France was the nickname of another
Knottingley teacher. Did his nickname have religious significance (i.e.
of Protestant stock) or was it gained from prodding his pupils or, since
he was a skilled musician, prodding the piano keys?
Concerning the teaching profession, the collective noun ‘Gaffer’ was
commonly accorded to headmasters. The appellation clearly echoed the
parental usage by which workmen showed deference to their employers but
the term was not confined solely to head teachers, being applied to
senior teachers too. In the early 1940s, as a pupil at Weeland Road
Junior School, I recall Wilf Hollingworth being referred to as ‘Gaffer’.
The definition of the nickname of one notable workman, ‘Figs’ Firth,
appears to have been lost, but not his occupational prowess, for as a
bricklayer’s labourer ‘Figs’ was the doyen of his profession, regularly
providing the support necessary to ensure the laying of 1,000 bricks per
day, no mean feat given the conditions of the trade which applied in the
inter war years.
A less enviable professional nickname and therefore one used
surreptitiously, was that bestowed on Mr. Dixon, proprietor of the
barber’s shop located within the building which also housed the Cherry
Tree Inn, Cow Lane end. The diminutive Dixon, at less than 5ft, almost
as broad as he was tall, was referred to as ‘Sweeny Todd’ but not, of
course, in his presence and certainly not when he was shaving a
The nickname of Tommy ‘Touchet’ Lightowler poses speculation
concerning its origin. Touchet was a family name of the Lords Audley,
one of who had been executed at Pontefract with Thomas, Earl of
Lancaster in 1322, following the abortive rebellion against Edward II
the previous year.
A descendant of the Touchets was the lawyer, Dr. Tetlow, who in the
late eighteenth century lived in the big house at the top of Racca
Green, later owned by the Twaites family. There is therefore ample
evidence of the Touchet’s association with the locality but less obvious
reason for the name to be associated with Tommy Lightowler. An
indication may perhaps be found in the events of 1885 when Jim Frazer, a
local bottlemaker, laid claim to the defunct Lovat Peerage at his native
Newcastle. Was Tommy Lightowler a sincere but self-deluded claimant of
kinship with the Touchet family who merely inherited the title as a
One exception to my prohibition on nicknames alluding to size is that
concerning ‘Giant’ Hart, whose character was in inverse proportion to
his small stature. ‘Gi’ was a glassmaker who was displaced by the advent
of machine bottlemaking in the 1920s. Hearing that work for manual
craftsmen was still to be found in the small bottle holes of London
prompted the impecunious ‘Gi’ and a friend to tramp to the Capital,
cadging food en route.
Travelling along the road the pair spotted a gateway leading to a
distant farmhouse. A friendly dispute arose as to who should walk to the
farmhouse to beg food and in the end ‘Gi’ agreed to undertake the task.
Nearing the farmstead, ‘Gi’ spotted a pie which had been placed on a
windowsill to cool. As nobody was about ‘Gi’ snatched the pie and sped
back to his mate. Having consumed the pie ‘Gi’ stated that as he had
obtained the food it was only fair that his mate should return the dish
and as his fellow traveller made his way to the farmhouse ‘Gi’ shouted
after him "…and don’t forget to say thank you to the farmer’s wife
for her kindness."
Some nicknames indicated physical prowess. George ‘Magic’
Charlesworth, the Knottingley Town Cricket Club wicket-keeper, is
alleged to have dived for a ball and caught a swallow in flight.
In this category several nicknames apply to people of my generation
(i.e. late 1920s – 1930s). Roy ‘Blood’ Pickersgill, George ‘Killer’
Kemp, and Lance ‘Cock’ Foster, were each in turn school champions in my
schooldays, although in the case of the latter there may be and
additional nod to the London district of Cock Fosters.
Concerning the inter-war generations it is interesting to note the
influence of films, radio and comic books on the choice of nicknames.
Thus, Tommy ‘Robey’ Rhodes, may be so called in reference to the late
music hall entertainer Sir George Robey, while ‘Blood’ Pickersgill’s
elder brother, Kenneth, was known as ‘Unbriargo’, a character in a song
by Jimmy Durante (who as ‘Schnozzel’ had his own nickname).
George ‘Dillinger’ Peel was named so when, awaiting the arrival of his
classmates for a woodwork lesson, he quickly shaped a wooden gun. Upon
the classroom door being opened, George sprang forward and shouted, "Stick
‘em up!" To his chagrin and the amusement of his peers, the first
person through the door was the teacher who replied, "Who do you
think you are – Dillinger?"
George also had a brother, whose nickname was ‘Necker’ Peel. Does
anyone know why? I also vaguely recall ‘Sabu’ Pickersgill (?) a darkly
handsome figure who lived in Quarry Avenue and was named for his
supposed similarity to the youthful Indian film star of the 1940s
Technicolor extravaganzas ‘Elephant Boy’ and ‘Jungle Book’.
Other contemporaries include Frank ‘Plute’ Keirnan, also known as
‘Plug’, ‘Pussy Holt, Charlie ‘Chukka’ Temple, presumably a play on his
forename, and similarly, ‘Spud’ Tate.
My close schoolfriend, Derek Fairbairn, was nicknamed ‘Chris’, derived
from the name of a character in the late 1940s radio show ‘Ray’s A
Laugh’. Upon being asked what the letter ‘C’ of his second name
represented and replying "Charles" he was contradicted with "No
it doesn’t. It’s for ‘Crystal Jollybottom, you saucebox", the
catchphrase of a character in the series. The nickname was abbreviated
to ‘Chris’ sometime thereafter.
My own nickname was ‘Carl’, from Carl Svenson, a Scandinavian villain
in the radio series ‘Dick Barton, Special Agent’. I am still trying to
figure out whether ‘Carl’ was allotted to me because of an imagined
similarity between my surname and that of the fictitious character or if
the influential factor was the (hopefully) imagined similarity of my
nature and that of the villain.
Concerning ‘Dick Barton’, it is claimed that ‘Chris’ Fairbairn’s
younger brothers, Keith, who had a shock of white hair, and Joseph, were
known as ‘Snowy’ and ‘Jock’ or ‘Jocker’, after Barton’s fictitious
assistants, Snowy and Jock.
Moving to more recent generations, we find the influence of television
in names such as Roy ‘Flint’ Stone, together with ‘Acker’ and ‘Cody’
Shaw, Barry ‘Bacca’ Burdin, and John ‘Hollmottlemight’ Holloway (there’s
a nickname with which to conjure?)
A nickname from an even more recent generation is that of Paul
‘Highness’ Lodge. In the late 1960s I took over a class at Ferrybridge
Junior School in the middle of the academic year. One of the children
was referred to by his classmates as ‘Highness’ and intrigued by the
apparent degree of deference, I sought to find out the reason for the
nickname. Neither Paul or his fellow pupils could provide an
explanation, however, and it was only much later when preparing a
history lesson that it occurred to me that the term ‘Highness’ might
have arisen in consequence of a previous lesson, being derived from
Paulinus, who, having arrived with St. Augustine in 597, later travelled
north to bring Christianity to the kingdom of Northumbria. Upon checking
with Paul I witnessed a spark of recognition in his eyes which was akin
to the image of a lightbulb in a bubble above the head of characters in
the ‘Beano’ and ‘Dandy’ and to my great satisfaction Paul was able to
confirm my theory.
And what of the ladies? Substitute names for women appear to be
exceedingly rare. There is, of course, Elizabeth ‘Dizzy’ Kellett, who
was anything but and therefore so inappropriately nicknamed that
speculation defies reason. Conversely, Hannah ‘Mrs Beautiful’ Rhodes,
the proprietor of a general goods shop at the Island Court corner of the
Flatts, was given her name because be it ever so humble an item anyone
sought to purchase was invariably described as being "beautiful". Mrs
Rhodes was also known to some as ‘Mad Hannah’.
Many of the known nicknames are of obscure origin and by their nature,
defy both definition and categorisation. All that one can do is to
provide a glossary and hope that in the fullness of time the record may
be supplemented by further detail. here then, are some of the remaining
Knottla nicknames, together with brief comments concerning the same and
Ernest ‘Mull’ Clark
Freddy ‘Guy’ Pearson – pronounced with a soft ‘G’ as in ‘giant’
Jimmy ‘Bolo’ Tranmer
Bob ‘Smocky’ Daw
‘Tabsie’ Garner – he and brother Tommy, were associated with the Sparrow
Castle gym club.
George ‘Dodger’ Haigh
Percy ‘Fiddler’ Baines – a marine engineer who objected to his nickname.
‘Crafty’ Spence – for many years the Knottingley ferryman operating from
the Island Court jetty.
George ‘Jig’ Middleton
‘Sharky’ Tunningley, also known as ‘Shengo’.
‘Colmosh’ Marshall – nickname may be a doggerel abstract of Colin
‘Nipper’ Green – a diminutive but energetic younger brother, hence
Frank ‘Nagger’ Addy – promounced with a soft ‘G’ as in ‘major’ – was
sexton at Knottingley Cemetery from 1930s – 1950s.
George ‘Judder’ Blakey – corrupted form of George.
George ‘ Judder’ Burdin – ditto.
‘Bogey’ Lightfoot – nickname possibly derived from surname suggesting
ghostlike movement ??
Alan ‘Dusty’ Rhodes – self explanatory hereditary nickname.
‘Babe’ Davies – youngest of family of all male siblings but nickname may
also have beeb influenced by name of baseball legend, ‘Babe’ Ruth ??
Terry ‘Tiger’ Watson
‘Icky’ Pick – a local tramp
‘Parmy’ Wilson – probably from his unusual forename, Parminus, which was
also his father’s forename.
‘Tuby’ Littlewood – tempting to think his nickname may have arisen from
association with Knottla Feast at which the Tuby family were always
represented and into which family several Knottingley people, including
my own, married.
John ‘Gelly’ Dickinson – the doyen of local billiard and snooker players.
George ‘Coogan’ Rhodes
Herbert ‘Vinegar’ Winterbottom – promounced as Winegar’ – a Nat Jackley
lookalike – tallest man in Knottingley – made ‘Tiny’ Firth look small by
Albert ‘Shaker’ Bagley
Albert ‘Gish’ Penistone
Harold ‘Yamps’ Whitwell
George ‘Peckham’ Savage
John ‘Gauk’ Adams
Tommy ‘Dreadnought’ Rhodes
Herbert ‘Lockey’ Fozzard
Hector ‘Sheg’ Aaron
Ronnie ‘Shenko’ Tunningley
Barry ‘Bacca’ Burdin
Benny ‘Chopsticks’ ? – surname unknown. Benny was a boat breaker and the
nickname may derive from that activity.
‘Cadge’ Lightfoot – was he a habitual cadger??
Roy ‘Duster’ Simpson
Jeffery ‘Marcino’ / ‘Mark’ Ward
David ‘Tigrob’ Briggs
Kenneth ‘Snicky’ Garbutt
Stansfield ‘Tippy Toes’ Greenwood – so named for difficulty when walking
due to malformed feet, a nickname that today would be considered
insensitive and inappropriate on grounds of political correctness?
- For an example of the use of the word ‘eek’ c.f. lines 5-7 of the
Prologue to Vhauser’s ‘Canterbury Tales’.
- Chambers F. The Memorable Awakening of Rip Van Frankle – Characters
of Old Knottingley, Book 4, (1966) C. Chambers (ed), no pagination. I am
grateful to Frank Chambers daughter, Mrs J. Jackson, for permission to
quote from her father’s work.
- Spencer T. The Development of the Yorkshire Glass Industry,
1800-1945’, Volume II, (2001) Chapter 7 pp 443-62 for a survey of the
diseases and illnesses of the trade and p445 for details of
- Pontefract Advertiser 10-9-1910 for report of presentation to Dodds
and 18-6-1910 & 20-7-1912 for reports of rescues.
- Spencer T. ‘Fairs, Festivals & frolics: Knottingley circa
1840-20032, Volume II, (2003) p39 for photograph of ‘Happy Joe’ Bagley
as ‘Mummy’s Darling Boy’.
- Pontefract & Castleford Express 17-7-1914 p6
- Pontefract Advertiser 24-9-1921 and passim for advertisements re
Fred ‘Cheerio’ Ellis and ibid 26-2-1927 for obituary report.
- ibid 24-1-1885