Geoffrey Shryhane’s Wigan World

Geoffrey Shryhane
Geoffrey Shryhane
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I WAS determined. I would never, ever go on twitter.

Never would the day come when I would sit on my sad little own and, using my computer, I would tell my followers about this, that and the other.

Not too much about “the other” you understand. In fact, I viewed twitter as a load of nonsense, condemning the twitterers, estimating they led sad little lives.

But I’ve always believed that there’s nothing too awful about “changing one’s mind”. Sometimes it takes a little courage.

And I’ve changed my mind about twitter. A bit of “you’ll love it” encouragement from younger colleagues for a week and I was soon tweeting all sorts of stuff, and getting responses from other twitterers.

My tweets are like mini Wigan World stories.

They say it’s better to be out of the world than out of fashion. That’s part of the reason why I signed up.

So read my tweets – and reply to them if you want. My twitter address is @WiganWorldGeoff

IT’S all a case of pros and cons.

In the end, those happiest people in life are people who are able to compromise. Be satisfied with half.

Wigan World’s had a letter from Bernard Powell having read the “what we miss” articles.

He rightly says that what we miss depends on how significant they were in our lives.

For instance, he says he misses the warmth of coal fires, but doesn’t miss clearing the ashes.

Bernard – a man who tells it how it is – says he misses flat-pack and rolls of IZAL toilet paper. Jays have stopped making them.

I well-remember Jays loo paper – and slippery it was too. Relief was sweet when quilted arrived, although as a kid, lots of folks still used newspaper. After and not before reading them, of course.

Our writer also mentions Green Shield Stamps and the wonderfully inviting catalogue which showed you could have an ornament for the top of the telly after collecting several million.

He longs for the return of bus conductors and assistants in shops being clued-up as to what they’re selling.

Bernard says: “In a Wigan cake shop I asked for pinhead oatmeal parkin for bonfire night.

“After a moment she looked at me as if I was a foreigner.”

WOW. It’s amazing that the Queen’s 88 next month and I have the feeling that our dear old George Formby has added to her longevity.

You think I’m kidding. I’m not.

In a recent article, the sainted and loquacious Gyles Brandreth made it known that Her Majesty is a Formby impersonator.

Seems that she does a fine imitation of “When I’m Cleaning Windows”.

It would be easy to say “never” but history records that the Queen is good at imitating voices. That said, her parents and her old granny, Queen Mary, were great lovers of Our George.

When things became really bad in the war, the Royal Family used to find brief relief and a tad of entertainment by telling their flunkies: “Send for George Formby.” I kid you not. Photos exist.

As for the Queen’s ability to imitate, it is on record that when Michael Fagin broke into Buckingham Palace and sat on her bed, a northern maid appeared and said: “Bloody ‘ell m’am wot’s ‘e doin’ ‘ere.”

Later the Queen imitated that to perfection.