Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Often we fail to notice gradual changes taking place in Brigg.
A relative, who has not lived here since the days of the old Urban District Council, made a return visit over the festive period and went for a walk to The Monument.
A senior citizen, she was struck by what she regards as the poor state of Brigg's footpaths.
Now this issue is quite often raised by concerned members of Brigg Town Council - but Brigg UDC (and Lindsey County Council) are long gone, and our unitary authority, North Lincolnshire, has responsibility for footpath repairs, not just in Brigg but as far afield as Haxey and Killingholme.
All local authorities face difficult decisions when it comes to spending our council tax proceeds. There's never enough to carry out every job, and you can only hope to please most of the people some of the time.
But could it be Brigg footpath repairs are not quite as high up the priority list as they used to be when the long lamented UDC (under Lindsey CC) were running the job?

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


A walk across town very early this morning revealed at least one-quarter of households had failed to put their bins out for collection by the North Lincolnshire Council refuse lorry.
That's odd, given that Christmas is a peak time of year for generating rubbish.
Perhaps some of those householders failed to realise there would be a collection today, as normal, with it being yuletide.
Returning to today's spot survey, a good number of residents who had put out their general waste bins failed to add the box for glass and bottles.
But what we could really have done with this week was emptying of the Burgandy-coloured bins containing cardboard and plastic - both very, very plentiful at Christmas.
Householders with doubts about which bins are to be collected during any given week are advised to visit the council's website, where you can key in your postcode and a handy chart appears, telling you all you need to know.
Paste the string below into your browser, key in your postcode and off you go...

PS There was one general waste bin this morning, on the kerbside between Wrawby Street and Queen Street, which was so full the lid was propped open at almost 90 degrees. Will the council still empty it?

Monday, December 29, 2008


Memo to Tesco management in Brigg: A few of your trolleys are missing!
You can find them, still locked together as they were when they left your car park, on the nearside bank of the nearby Old River Ancholme - not far into the water.
It looks like some festive wag, or vandal (depending on your point of view), took the trolleys from near the store and pushed them the relatively short distance into the river.
I think they must belong to Tesco, as Lidl's are generally chained together and you need to put a coin in the slot to free each one. Not the sort of expense your average vandal is going to stump up, just for a laugh.
The trolleys should be as good as new after being given a decent wash.
Unless there are some festive 'elf and safety reasons why not, of course!

Sunday, December 28, 2008


Not far from where the travellers' caravans are camped, on the old lorry wash site, off Atherton Way, there are three piebald ponies, or perhaps small horses, tethered on a tiny patch of scrub, within a few yards of the river towpath. Not much grazing to be had there.
It's always been my belief travellers have a good reputation when it comes to caring for their steeds. After all, it's in their interests to keep them healthy for trading at a later date.
This site is so far off the beaten track, not many folk will see the horses.
Could be, of course, they will be moved to pastures new in the not too distant future.


Great to see the recycling spirit of Brigg character Tansy lives.
There's a youngster, maybe 12 or 13, who can be seen scouring the Ancholme towpath, collecting bottle tops discarded by those who choose to drink on the riverside.
He uses a metal stick with a magnet on the end and, once he's collected enough to bag up, sells the bottle tops for recycling.
It's surprising how many discarded ones can be found in a small stretch, so he's doing a public service collecting litter, and saving our own Lol Hartmann from having to sweep them up.
As there's a good allocation of litter bins on the riverside, near Spring's Parade, it's a pity folk can't be bothered to use them.
But one man's loss is clearly this youngster's gain.
For those Brigg Blog readers who have not been in town long enough to remember Tansy, he used to walk our streets, pushing an old pram, and was always on the lookout for anything discarded which he could sell on for a few pence, or a shilling.
A First World War vetran, Tansy lived on Sumpter's Farm, off Elwes Street, and always carried his trusty stick.
He could often be seen, in the 1960s, in the window seat of the cafe on Bridge Street, savouring a cuppa.

Saturday, December 27, 2008


Plenty of interesting adult education courses will be on offer at the Redcombe Lane centre next month.
There are some related to multi-media and information technology, others on languages and humanities, plus arts and crafts and 'skills for life'.
Everything from porcelain painting to fun with photos.
For details call 01652 657204, call in at the Adult Education Centre (next to Vale of Ancholme) or email

Friday, December 26, 2008


Brigg United Junior Football Club will be holding its Club Christmas Fun Day on Sunday at Brigg Recreation Ground, off Wrawby Road.
Three pitches will be set up for children and parents to play round robin matches between 11am and 1pm - before going to the Ancholme Inn, on Grammar School Road, for food and music.

Thursday, December 25, 2008


A very happy Christmas to all Brigg Blog readers.
Last night proved to be a very lucrative one for town hostelries, with staff struggling to keep pace with demand at some points.
Looking ahead to the new year, more than 40 people have so far confirmed to attend Simon Church's reunion.
He's coming back to North Lincolnshire from his home in Perth, West Australia, and will be meeting up with old friends on Saturday, January 31, from 7pm in the Yarborough Hunt.
You can find out more by emailing

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Many in Brigg will be sad to hear of the death of Joyce Gunnee, aged 86.
She was the wife of Chris Gunnee, the former town councillor.
Chris and Joyce made their home in St Helen's Road, Brigg, and raised their family - now all middle-aged.
Kettle's, of Elwes Street, and making the arrangements and donations in Joyce's memory may be made to Parkinson's Research and left at the funeral service at St John's Church, Bigby Street, on Tuesday, December 30 (1pm).


Talk about making an early start! Eaager shoppers were queueing to get served at Water's, the quality butcher, before 7am.
Remember, if you are visiting Brigg town centre today, there's a small Christmas Eve general market, even though it's not Thursday.
Many Brigg folk will be buying their fresh fruit and veg from Barry Chilvers' stall, no doubt.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Brigg Mothers' Union members were involved in the post-nativity event on Friday evening.
Co-ordinator Pam Braithwaite says: "Many visitors came into the church and church hall for fellowship, chat and refreshments."
Pam has also passed on a release from the MU, with a seasonal message:

Eight out of 10 parents want their children to believe in the nativity story.
A survey of parents has raised concerns that the church needs to do more to support families in the spiritual nurture of their children. The data reveals parents want to foster their children’s spirituality but shrink from mentioning God.
The research, carried out by Christian family charity Mothers’ Union, shows that whilst an overwhelming majority of parents (81%) teach their children about the birth of Jesus Christ at Christmas, only four percent plan go on to attend church services more with their children in 2009.
Three-quarters of parents believe the spiritual nurture of their children to be important. However, according to the survey just 7% are talking to their children about God as an avenue to lasting security in the credit crunch. Despite this desire to look after their children’s spirituality, parents are seven times more likely (49%) to cite family as the vehicle most likely to provide happiness and security to their children than God.
Reg Bailey, chief executive of the Mothers' Union said “It is encouraging that parents see connecting children with Jesus as only a little less important [14%] than the belief in Father Christmas. In these times of financial insecurity, it is clear that parents are thinking about the spiritual side of Christmas. This gives all Christians a challenge. Parents are telling us they have a desire to nurture the spiritual life of their children, but that they lack the confidence to talk about God. The church needs to connect with that hunger and get across the message that in times of both adversity and prosperity, it has a universal message which enables people to connect with something outside themselves.

The research, involving 1,005 parents of children aged 11 or under, was carried out by the family charity, Mothers’ Union, in an online survey last week.
The MU has 3.6 million members who are committed to supporting parents as they nurture their children spiritually.
To this end they have produced a series of five leaflets Children in Church designed to help parents and congregations engage with the spirituality of children. Leaflets cost 25p for a set of five.


Sunday, December 21, 2008


It always strikes me as odd when you enter Tesco's Brigg store - a heater blazing away to warm up the place, next to wide open doors.
Perhaps something they could attend to when the extension/rebuild gets under way in the New Year.


Sorry to see all the glass smashed in the public telephone box on Central Square, near the junction with Glebe Road - and a shopping trolley abandoned next to it.
Not sure whether the two are in any way connected.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


An hectic weekend for Brigg started last night with the successful nativity play staged in the Market Place, featured a real live baby as Jesus.
The donkey didn't always want to do what the director wanted it to do, but it didn't matter.
Congratulations to Canon Lilley and the members of various churches who came together to make this event happen. Let's hope for a repeat next year.
Today's special farmers' market attracted a large crowd of shoppers to the various stalls. And it was great to see Wrawby Street so busy - proof, if proof were needed, that the monthly farmers' markets really benefit other traders in the town.
Ian Cawsey MP seems to have shares in the bandstand! Only a couple of Saturdays since he was there collecting for Jerry Green's, he popped up again today to provide guitar and vocals for Christmas songs being played to entertain the crowds.
Among his musical colleagues in the bandstand was Coun James Truepenny, Brigg's Deputy Town Mayor, who teaches music.
Inside the Angel Suite, Town Mayor Coun Mike Campion's coffee morning was well supported, and His Worship has promised to let us know the total raised for his chosen charities, when he's had chance to tot up the pennies.
Mayoress, Ann, was serving refreshments, and the Vale of Ancholme College band provided suitable music for the occasion.
Various stalls were also open in the Angel Courtyard.

More pictures I took at this event will no doubt find their way into the pages of the Scunthorpe Target in the near future.

Friday, December 19, 2008


There don't seem to be quite so many Brigg homes decked out with festive light displays this year. Maybe it's the economic climate or the rising cost of 'juice'. However, as ever, Mick Smith, in St Helen's Road, has done a great job. I took this picture the other night while passing his illuminations. Sorry it's a bit grainy but although Mick's lights are impressive, the flash on my little digital camera is worked by a couple of batteries from Tesco.


A nice tradition was continued this week by Brigg's current Town Mayor, Coun Mike Campion.
He invited fellow councillors, officials and the solitary member of the Press, to enjoy a Christmas drink with him at Hardy's, following the pre-Christmas meeting of the town council, in the Angel Suite.
The Mayor dealt with the bar bill himself, by the way, before anyone thinks otherwise!
The tradition was established, if memory serves me correctly, when Coun John Kitwood was the town's first citizen. And subsequent wearers of the civic chain have kept it alive, with visits to the Black Bull and Yarborough Hunt I can recall.
Welcome trade, too, on a midweek night in December - and much nicer than standing round in the Angel, having a glass of sherry and a mince pie, as used to be the case. Well, that's my opinion.
In return for Coun Mike's hospitality, most, if not all, his guests will be popping in to the Angel tomorrow morning to support his charity coffee morning. Hopefully many townsfolk will pay it a visit, too.
That coincides with the special Christmas farmers' market, from 9am in the Market Place. You may have noticed that the organisers of the market have now included 'award winning' on their publicity material, including the banner on the railings near The Monument. And why shouldn't they? It's not often Brigg gets named the best in Britain!
Tomorrow's market should be well and truly heaving. And hopefully many of the visitors will spend their hard-earned in Brigg town centre businesses while they are in town.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Back in the days of Brigg Grammar School (pre-1976), pupils and staff marked the end of the autumn term by singing the carol O Come All Ye Latin!
The school would then be dismissed from its massed assembly for the Christmas holidays by headmaster H B Williams.
Latin was still being taught at the school - useful to those going into the medical profession - and O Come All Ye Faithful translated as Adeste Fideles.
For those of us less proficient in the classic tongue, a printed copy of the carol's translation was given to each boy when he began in the first year. This had to be stuck into the back inside cover of the green school hymn book and last you for the next seven years!
However, new information has now come to light about Adeste Fideles, which might raise a few eyebrows among older Briggensians, particularly those with keen interests in religion and history.
For according to one musical expert, O Come All Ye Faithful, also called Adeste Fideles, is actually a birth ode to Jacobite pretender Bonnie Prince Charlie.
Born shortly before Christmas on December 20 1720, Bonnie Prince Charlie was the grandson of England’s last Catholic monarch, James II.
He was born in exile in Italy and became the focus for Catholic Jacobite rebels intent on restoring the House of Stuart to the English throne.
In 1745, he raised an army to invade the British Isles, taking Edinburgh, but was defeated at the Battle of Culloden on April 16 1746.
Professor Bennett Zon, head of the department of music at Durham University, unearthed clear references to the Prince in the carol’s lyrics, written by 18th century music scribe, John Francis Wade.
"There is far more to this beloved song than meets the eye,” he said. "Fideles is Faithful Catholic Jacobites. Bethlehem is a common Jacobite cipher for England, and Regem Angelorum is a well-known pun on Angelorum, angels, and Anglorum, English.
"The meaning of the Christmas carol is clear: ’Come and Behold Him, Born the King of Angels’ really means, ’Come and Behold Him, Born the King of the English’ - Bonnie Prince Charlie!"
Prof Zon said there were other clues to the subversive political message contained in the carol. "In its earliest forms, from the 1740s to 1770s, Adeste Fideles is often found next to, or physically very near, prayers for the exiled monarch," he said.
"And in John Francis Wade’s books it and other liturgical texts with ’hidden’ Jacobite meaning are often strewn - even laden - with Jacobite floral imagery. ”
One of the books containing the carol even contains a colourful picture of the exiled monarch, as well as a Jacobite cryptogram in Latin on its title page.
"When deciphered it gives a very clear sense of its Jacobite connections," Prof Zon said.
The Jacobite meaning of the carol gradually faded as the cause lost its grip on popular consciousness.
"Adeste Fideles seems to have lost its Jacobite meanings not long after Wade’s last published book in 1773," he said. "The real meaning of the Carol, remains, however, although whose birth we choose to celebrate in it remains a matter of personal decision."
Brigg Grammar was founded in 1669, and so was well-established by the time Bonnie Prince Charlie came to prominence.
But does anyone know when the tradition for singing Adeste Fideles at the pre-Christmas assembly was established at BGS?

Our picture was taken in 1969, during my time at the school, when singing Adeste Fideles was an annual ritual at this time of year. It shows French master Vernon Atkin (left) chatting to maths specialist Harold Stinson. Both were strong singers during school assemblies, particularly Harold who used to sing the bass part of the tunes. Or that's what it sounded like.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


A Christmas treat is in store for guests attending a special event in Brigg today at Golden Living’s Ancholme Mews retirement apartments, including hot drinks, mince pies and a chat with TV legend Wendy Craig!
The midday event will give guests the opportunity to look around the popular new development, off Bigby Street, that opened earlier this year, including a tour of the available apartments, resident’s lounge and taking in the beautiful landscaped gardens before heading to the guest suite for refreshments.
Ancholme Mews offers superior retirement apartments, specifically designed to provide the ultimate choice in retirement living. The 53 private residences are all high on style and security, and low on maintenance.
Wendy, star of hit TV shows such as The Royal and Butterflies, and ambassador for Golden Living (the apartment developers), will be attending the event and will be on hand to chat to visitors.
She commented: “I’m looking forward to coming back to the development in Brigg after helping with the launch this summer. The apartments are beautiful and set in lovely surroundings – a great place to relax during retirement.”
Stephen Daubney, Chief Executive at Golden Living, added: “We are very proud of our Ancholme Mews development.
“As always we are located close to transport links and amenities, but just as importantly we put massive emphasis on the security and welfare of our residents, aiming to provide a cost effective, stress free retirement.”
“We’ll be opening our doors for people to come and get a real feel for living in one of our apartments, whilst enjoying a bit of fun and festive cheer!”
To register your interest or book your attendance at this event please telephone 01652 658949. Spaces are limited.


There was an early wake-up call for some town centre traders in Brigg this morning.
A power cut, about 6.40am, set off a number of burglar alarms, alerting traders who had to get out of bed to drive in and see what all the fuss was about.
Most lights came back within a few seconds. However, it was a little surprising not to see the arrival of the police, especially as their Brigg station is only a few dozen yards from where the shop alarms were blazing away.
Staff at one shop, which shall remain nameless, had arrived within 20 minutes and switched off their alarm, with no sign of the police.
It could be, of course, Insp Rutty's team had quite correctly worked out the reason for the alarms going off, as we had.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Bryan Robins continues to serve Brigg, despite being a retired town councillor.
At last night's monthly meeting of the town council, held in the Angel Suite, Bryan was re-elected to represent the authority for a further term on the Sir John Nelthorpe School Foundation Trustees.
Bryan's public service goes back to the early 1960s, when he was a prominent member of the old Brigg Urban District Council, continuing, from 1974, on the town council.
A former Town Mayor, he is pictured here in July 1977, on Brigg Recreation Ground, being presented to Her Majesty the Queen. With him is his mother Mary, the Mayoress.
Older Brigg Blog readers will remember Bryan as the staff photographer on the Lincolnshire Times, based at 57 Wrawby Street. When that weekly closed in the mid-1980s, he switched to the Scunthorpe Telegraph.

Monday, December 15, 2008


For many years, students at Brigg Sixth Form College have raised money through their TWAG Week - similar to university students' famous Rag Weeks.
The Brigg students carry out a range of fundraising events and then present the proceeds to charities at a pre-Christmas get-together.
That event will be staged today at 11.30am at St John's Church, with cash being handed over to Brigg and District Breast Cancert Support, Wish Upon a Star, the Lindsey Lodge Hospice, Lincolnshire Air Ambulance and World Vision.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


Monthly meetings of Brigg Town Council used to take three hours. But since the council expanded its role and introduced committees to carry out much of the business, monthly 'full council' get-togethers in the Angel Suite have become pretty much rubber stamping exercises. And they don't take up much time.
Tomorrow's, starting at 7.30pm, does not look like going against the modern trend.
As always, a 15-minute period has been set aside for questions from members of the public. But it's very rare for anyone to exercise this democratic right.


Have you noticed Brigg's Britannia Inn is using its coal fire as a plus factor to help entice customers into the Wrawby Street hostelry?
Its merits are flagged up to passing motorists and pedestrians on a board outside the premises.
Sitting beside a roaring fire, pint in hand, watching the football on TV: Just the thing for many sports fans on a Sunday afternoon.
What surprises me is some group of officials have not banned businesses from using coal fires to generate custom. They are 'not very PC' amid all this talk of global warming.
Make the most of it down at 'The Brit' while you can!

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Town Mayor Coun Mike Campion has said he's pleased to see new businesses arriving in Brigg.
To that we would add it's very good two prominent buildings have been occupied again - one in Wrawby Street (where Cooplands used to be before switching to the former Shoefayre premises) and the other on Bigby Street (previously Lloyds Bank).


Today's Daily Telegraph - described as Britain's top-selling quality national newspaper - includes Brigg's Christmas farmers' market in its top 10 of the best in the UK.
Our market next Saturday (Dec 20), from 9am-3pm, is listed at number nine, and the Daily Telegraph says it offers 'good food and atmosphere'.
What price publicity like that?

Friday, December 12, 2008


Maybe you visit Brigg Blog quite often, or perhaps you are seeing it today for the first time. Whichever is the case, please recommend it to your friends, relatives and colleagues as a way of keeping in touch with Brigg gossip and events which, given the limitations of the printed page, are unlikely to find their way into the columns of the Scunthorpe Telegraph.
If you wish to make a contribution, or just suggest a topic we might feature, please post a comment here, now, or, if you prefer, email:

Brigg Blog is updated most days, including weekends. We like feedback, so feel free to post comments.


Is my memory playing tricks, or was it not once the custom for Brigg shopkeepers to deal with snow and ice outside their premises (car parks included)?
Negotiating a shopping trolley out of Lidl and along the adjoining car park this morning was no joke, given the icy conditions. Not that we wish to single out Lidl, by any means. Their area was no worse than others.
Brigg's footpaths - and there are miles of them - have also been very slippery, although finding the resources to salt and sand the lot would be very difficult for North Lincolnshire Council. If not impossible.
Unfortunately, given today's litigation culture, if the council did commit to doing some footpaths, and a resident suffered injury after slipping on one they had not been salted or sanded, the authority might, in theory, face a compensation claim.
Unfortunately, more freezing weather is forecast. Infact, sod's law will probably apply once again, with cold conditions up to December 24, with mild, wet weather the following day to rob us of that rare dream, A White Christmas, just like the ones we used to know.
Put away the film clip of B-B-B-Bing Crosby crooning by the tree for another year!


Keigar Homes, the North Lincolnshire company with planning permission to build a new development on the former Glebe Road site in Brigg, has now responded to Brigg Town Council's views on the name to be used for this cul-de-sac, once the job is finished.
Keigar's original name was not favoured by councillors, and the firm has made a 'further suggestion' to be considered at Monday's meeting of the planning and environment committee, meeting in the Angel Suite at 6.45pm.
Despite paying big money for the site, Keigar is duty bound to consult town councillors about street names. And North Lincolnshire Council will also have to agree with the final choice.
Having heard Keigar had now started work on the site, I had a look the other day but couldn't see any signs to suggest things are up and running. However, despite the currently depressed housing market, it can't be long before the construction crews move in, as no firm can afford to sit on unrealised assets for long.
Personally, I think it would be been nice to name this street after a former headmaster of Glebe Road School, such as Bratley, Stocks, Wass...or Steve Pearce, the final head before it closed and switched to the new purpose-built facility down Atherton Way.
In Glanford Borough Council's time they didn't like to allocate 'tribute' street names while the recipients were still alive. But there were exceptions, such as Appleyard Drive, in Barton-Upon-Humber, named after Ted Appleyard, who today is still serving his beloved community with distinction, despite being 90-odd.
So will our new street off Glebe Road eventually become Old School Close? Or will some other name be selected? We shall have to wait and see.
To me, Reg Stocks Road has a nice ring to it. And it's not long since the new addition, off Horstead Avenue, was called Foxton Way, after long-serving Brigg GP Dr John Foxton, with members of the family being invited down for a look by the developers.
Reg was still headmaster when our year left Glebe Road in 1967, and I think he went on for a year or two after that before taking retirement.
Have you any views?

Thursday, December 11, 2008


Bret Butler, a former pupil and boarder at Brigg Grammar School from 1951-58, has penned some interesting schoolday memories from his home in New Zealand and has forwarded them to the Briggensians' Association, representing ex-pupils and staff.

I have just come to the realisation that it is almost exactly 50 years to the day that I left Brigg Grammar School, as it then was, in December 1958, shortly after being offered a place at Pembroke College, Cambridge.
I was at Cambridge from 1960 to 1963 and graduated with a degree in history. I came to New Zealand as a ten pound pom in 1965 and stayed three years before returning to the UK for 1968 and 1969. I then emigrated permanently to New Zealand at the start of 1970.
I was Headmaster of Huntley School in Marton from 1970 until 1987 and then Headmaster of King's School in Auckland from 1988 until 2000. Since then I have been involved with educational consultancy for Massey University, the Ministry of Education and Multi Serve Education Trust. I was in the Arabian Gulf state of Qatar in 2004 and 2005, where I headed up a programme of introducing self-managing systems into the local Qatari schools.
My mother is still alive near Grimsby and I get back there most years. I have called in to Brigg on a number of occasions and have driven into the school grounds, but it is greatly changed. The old Grammar School Road seems much diminished and I am sure that the tuck shop across the road is long gone.
I was at the school as a boarder from 1951 to 1958. We were thoroughly and rigorously taught by some long-serving and dedicated staff such as Knight, Henthorn, Richards, Atkins, Jarvis and Barker among others. Quite a lot of boys won state scholarships or Lindsey senior scholarships and Matthews seemed fairly successful in getting boys into Oxford or Cambridge in those years.
Football and cricket were the dominant sports and I remember some fine players such as Roger Holmes, the Oates boys, Roger Dobson and Rick Carter among others. There were also some fine swimmers and athletes. Cross country appeared to dominate the cold middle term and the name Brickyard Lane is forever etched in the memory.
Peter Jarvis was a contemporary and I was sad to miss him when he made a trip to New Zealand, since I was out of the country at the time.
The structure of the school is much changed with a larger roll, co-education and no boarding. I think that we had about 50 boarders in School House out of a total roll of about 350.
My wife Sue, who is a New Zealander, and I have three sons and four grandsons. We live in the central North Island at a place called Lake Taupo and have magnficent views over the lake and the mountains. It's starting to get warm here now and we are looking forward to a good summer.
I follow the school news on the website and must try to get back again one day.

Nigel's note: The website to which Bret refers will be

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


This morning, on one of the early Hornsby buses taking people from Brigg into Scunthorpe, there was a courteous chap carrying out a survey of passenger numbers and destinations. I thought I glimpsed the North Lincolnshire Council logo on the foot of the sheet he was filling in, attached to a clipboard.
As you may know, North Lincolnshire Council subsidises some of the early morning and late evening services on this route. No-one will have a problem with scrutiny of how public money is expended. That's only right and proper.
However, if, or when, passenger survey information is considered by the powers-that-be, they should bear in mind the importance of these services to people getting to and from work. And the 'green' merit of public transport, rather than lots of journeys being made in cars containing only one person.
Some of us who use these buses are lucky enough to have cars we can use as an alternative. But the Labour Government - and North Lincolnshire Council is also controlled by the same party - bangs on about the use of public transport as a way of helping the environment. A worthy argument. And surely one in keeping with continued bus subsidies.
Perhaps a dozen folk from Brigg and Broughton were on our bus this morning by the time it reached Ashby, which may not look impressive to the bean-counting brigade. But surely other factors need to be taken into consideration.

Our picture shows one of the Hornsby Service 4 buses leaving Cary Lane, Brigg, in better light than we had at 7am today!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008


How will the impending closure of Brigg Preparatory School, on Bigby Street, affect the numbers taking part in the North Lincolnshire Music and Drama Festival?
Hopefully, when the Prep pupils move into their partner school in Hull, they will still be able to take part in the festival. But the difficulties, and expense, are obvious.
Even in our school days, back in the 1960s, the Prep dominated many classes.
The 2009 festival will run from March 16-28 and will be the 89th. Tel (01652) 652084 for further details.

Monday, December 08, 2008


Sorry to hear of the death of Stephen Lilley (54), well known in Brigg for his ambulance work. His funeral will beat 11am on Friday (Dec 12) at Woodlands Crematorium, Scunthorpe.


Listed building consent has been granted to NFU Mutual for a non-illuminated hanging sign above 14/15 Wrawby Street, Brigg.
North Lincolnshire Council is also being asked to give permission for a revised parking and amenity area on land off South View Avenue, the application being made by Longhurst Group Ltd.
Permission is also being sought to erect a storage shed at Brigg Youth Centre, on Grammar School Road.

Sunday, December 07, 2008


Earlier this afternoon it took me 10 minutes to get from St Helen's Road, past the Monument and down Barnard Avenue, as far as Ancholme Way, despite there being no accident, roadworks or procession of 'Sunday drivers' crawling along.
The reason appeared to be the timing of the two sets of traffic lights on Barnard Avenue.
Very little traffic will exit the Old Courts Road car park on a Sunday, and not much from Cary Lane, either. So why not alter the timing of the lights at slack periods like this, to allow more 'through' traffic on the A18?
These days you can control just about anything by computer, over huge distances.
Still on the question of traffic flows: Things would be speeded up considerably if people in Brigg (other than those living in cul-de-sacs) parked vehicles in their drives, if they have them.
Why do they insist on leaving them on the streets?
Insurance companies used to give discounts for parking cars on your own property. And there's much less chance of vandalism or accidental damage.


Residents with views for or against the proposed Brigg Biomass power plant - on the old sugar factory site - will be interested to learn of a decision made by a neighbouring authority.
West Lindsey District Council's planning committee refused to grant permission for a biomass demonstration project comprising seven live/work units and a biomass boiler with associated infastructure to provide heating and hot water to these units at Church Farm, Harpswell.
The application was submitted by Geoff and Pauline Kealey, of Church Farm, throught agents Hodson Architects, of Cleethorpes.

Saturday, December 06, 2008


Everyone makes mistakes - and I've been responsible for many misprints in my long career. But having picked up the latest issue of Fresh Start's excellent monthly glossy magazine in Brigg's Angel courtyard last night, I spotted an entry on page five which made me chuckle.
Listing the menu for a Christmas lunch, the magazine refers to the main course of beef, turkey, mice and potato pie.
Festive elf and safety staff have no need to act!


The heavy rain which fell last night clearly affected the number of people attending Brigg's Christmas fair and lights switch-on. However, those who braved the wet conditions had a good night.
The rain sent many people scurrying into shops and our pubs, which could certainly do with the extra trade.
Congratulations must be extended to Brigg District Lions and the town council for the hard work put into organising the event.
I accompanied the Scunthorpe Telegraph's new editor, Mel Cook, to the now traditional pre-event buffet and drinks in the Angel Suite, attended by invited guests and characters from the Plowright Theatre Pantomime.
After a drink and a snack it was time to venture out into the cold for the official ceremony.
Brigg Christmas Fair night is a bit like the old Victorian tradition of promenading: You bump into lots of people for a chat. And if you are in our line of work, that's often a good source of information.


Simon 'Chozzy' Church' - returning to Brigg from his home in Australia for a New Year reunion - has now made an unusual request: He wants all those who attend to don Aussie shirts.
Strewth! Perhaps the boys has spent too long in the sun in Perth, West Australia, and does not realise what the temperature might be like for those of us walking to his get-together.
Simon's event will be in the Yarborough Arms, Bridge Street, on Saturday, January 31 (from 7pm).
He wants to see old friends from Brigg Grammar School, Sir John Nelthorpe, Brigg Town Cricket Club, Barnetby Football Club, plus family, friends - and teachers!
Please not Simon Church's email is:

Friday, December 05, 2008


Anyone remember when some Brigg teenagers used to try climbing up the Market Place Christmas tree, to see who could get nearest to the top?
Not mentioning any names, but at least one of them - now middle-aged - still live in the area.


Brigg's largest communal event of the year is tonight and the town centre will be packed for the annual Christmas fair and switch-on of the festive lights.
The fun starts about 4.30pm, with the lights going on at 5pm. Brigg District Lions offer a host of stalls, and the tills will be ringing merrily at town centre businesses - pubs, shops and eating establishments.
The weather will be a big factor in the final attendance.
Brigg Town Council funds the cost of the Christmas lights, erected, as they have been for many years, by Barrie Gray's team from the long-established Brigg electrical business.
Given all the modern health and safety requirements, many UK towns and villages have dropped their illuminations. But Brigg council is determined to see this tradition continue.
Sorry, for 'health and safety' let's substitute 'elf and safety' - given that we are talking about Christmas!
Yo! Ho! Ho!

Thursday, December 04, 2008


Many months after the initial complaint about bad visibility on Cadney Road, Brigg, North Lincolnshire Council has had the offending foliage (near Candley Beck bridge) trimmed back. However, it's not quite what the original complainant was hoping for.
She says: "They have trimmed the tops of the shrubs back to the top of the fence, which has improved visibility a little, but not much.
"What they should have done is cut back to ground level as they always used to do. By June, they will be just as tall again, and we will be in the same position as this year."
Brigg Town Council put pressure on the highways authority to get things sorted but when the issue was raised at a recent meeting was unclear whether the necessary action had been taken.
Coun Ben Nobbs (pictured) thought it had - but Brigg Blog will alert the town clerk about what now seems to be a partial success.


Having returned to Brigg by bus at about 5.45pm last night I took the usual route home from Cary Lane, via Coney Court - but could get no further because a firecrew was busy dealing with the aftermath of a blaze outside the Hungry Fisherman.
Official word - reported in today's Scunthorpe Telegraph - was it was just a bin fire. It looked a bit more dramatic than that, with a fire tender parked in the Market Place and a couple of hoses running down Coney Court to the scene of the blaze.
Hopefully there wasn't too much cleaning up to do and business will not be unduly affected.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


Brigg Blog has banged on before about congestion on Bigby Road, near the junction with St Helen's Road. And the matter has been raised by concerned town councillors.
Now someone, or some firm, has decided to cure the problem by placing eight cones in a line to deter people from parking there. They have been there for a couple of days.
It's certainly a help to drivers trying to get out of St Helen's Road and onto the A1084. But obviously only a short-term measure.
Anyone know who put the cones there?


A 'for sale' sign has gone up on the Dying Gladiator, in Bigby Street, Brigg, the pub having closed several weeks ago, with the economic climate a factor behind the shutters going up.
If you fancy taking on the historic hostelry, the sale is being handled by Davey and Co, call 0800 9803866 or visit the website
Brigg's Dying Gladiator is the only pub carrying that name in the UK.
The White Horse Inn, in Wrawby Street, is still trading - we must stress that - but the business is now available to let.
If you fancy that one, ring 08448483280 or visit
Brigg's Brocklesby Ox, on Bridge Street, also remains on the market. There have been hopes of a new owner, with some people taking a look, but so far no sign of its doors re-opening to Brigg drinkers.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008


In today's Brigg Extra page in the Scunthorpe Telegraph we report how Brigg Town Council has agreed to make a £50 donation to the Army Benevolent Fund, after considering an appeal for help from Major General Sir Evelyn Webb Carter KCVO OBE, the fund’s controller.
You will have to make your own mind up about whether, like me, you think it’s a sad indictment of the way things are run in Britain today when charitable donations have to be sought from town councils up and down the country to care for our brave boys and girls who have served their country in uniform.
Here’s the full text of the General’s letter, explaining why Brigg’s money is needed, and what it will help to provide.

Dear Mayor and Mayoress (Coun Mike and Ann Campion)

I am writing to you at a time of considerable concern here at the Army Benevolent Fund.
Please allow me to explain. The casualty figures from the Army's operations in Afghanistan make for very sobering reading, every week seeming to bring news of further attacks on soldiers.
My concern about the possibility of such a casualty rate led me to set up our Current Operations Fund, to support soldiers injured or families of those killed as a result of their Service during the current operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and in future operations.
As Controller of the ABF it is precisely at times like this that I have to keep a sharp eye on where we are headed, what we are managing to achieve, and the resources we require in order to meet the need — both current and future. It is as a result of this sort of review that I am writing to you today.
My fear is that the continuing stream of casualties, from Afghanistan in particular, will place an even greater call on our 'war chest' than I envisaged. There are the physically injured we know about, but there are also the mental scars that we do not yet know about. Whilst soldiers remain in the Army they are well looked after. But it is when they leave, at some time in the future, that their problems will arise and they will need help.
My concern is that it will be no use asking for help in ten years' time, when I believe the need will really bite, because, unlike the Falkland’s Campaign, most of us will wish to forget our involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. Therefore, we must prepare now to cope with the needs of the future as well as the needs of today.
Otherwise, I am extremely concerned that we may not be able to help those members of the Army family who come forward to ask for help, both immediately and in the years to come.
I am therefore asking you today to enable us to meet this increasing need. Such a request is not made lightly and I have asked some members of the Army family to help me to give a fuller picture than can be given by my own letter.
For instance, I have enclosed a letter from Colonel Stuart Tootal. Colonel Tootal commanded the Third Battalion the Parachute Regiment on their deployment to Afghanistan in 2006. The Battalion served with distinction in Helmand Province. However, over the course of their service, 14 soldiers were killed, and 46 more were wounded, many of them gravely. Acting in the finest Army tradition of standing up for his men, Colonel Tootal wanted to get the very best of care for every one of those who had been wounded, and to ensure that families were supported in their time of need.
One such soldier was Sergeant Paddy Caldwell, shot by the Taliban whilst directing mortar fire in Sangin, Helmand. An AK47 bullet passed through his neck, severely injuring his spine and leaving him paralysed, with limited muscle and nerve function below the site of his injury.
Paddy made a magnificent recovery, driving himself through a punishing regime of physiotherapy and through sheer determination getting to the point where he was well enough to accept the Battalion’s offer of a job in 3 PARA's Welfare Office.
Colonel Tootal knew that Paddy wouldn’t ask for help for himself, so he contacted the ABF on his behalf. This brave soldier desperately needed an adapted vehicle so that he could be driven safely by his fiancee to work. But the cost of such a car was well beyond his means. It looked as if all his hard work to continue an Army career was going to be in vain. I am delighted to report that the ABF was able to swing into action and get Paddy on the road.
The men and women who are bravely serving in Afghanistan and elsewhere deserve to know that help — prompt, sufficient and respectful — is there when they or their families need to call upon it. I am resolute that the ABF should be able to provide such assistance; however, as the enclosed memo from our Director of Grants and Welfare shows, we are predicting a very considerable increase in the demand on our resources. A gift from you today will go straight to work for the members of the Army who need it:

£30 for example, could contribute towards the cost of an adapted vehicle for a soldier wounded in action.

£60 could help us to support the family of a soldier killed in action — giving them the ability to cope with financial hardship.

£90 could help to cover the costs of retraining for a soldier invalided out of the Army who wants to embark on a new career.

With many thanks for your past support of the Fund.

Yours sincerely,

Major General Sir Evelyn Webb Carter KCVO OBE

Monday, December 01, 2008


The Brigg Extra page story in the Scunthorpe Telegraph explaining how Brigg Town Council is trying to get more organisations to book the Angel Suite interested one of our readers, who makes a very fair point.
He asks: "Do you think the marketing of the Angel Suite would be more successful if Brigg Town Council were to set an example by reverting to their former practice of holding their Civic Dinners in the Ballroom?"
The council usually keeps an eye on Brigg Blog, so maybe a response will be forthcoming. We will let you know.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


Once at school in Brigg, Simon 'Choz' Church, who emigrated to Australia, is returning to the town on January 31 and is planning an evening reunion with old friends at the Yarborough Hunt, in Bridge Street.
Simon, well-known cricketer with Brigg Town, has enjoyed a good response so far but it still trying to track down more people.
He has issued the list below of those he can remember being with at Sir John Nelthorpe School.
If you can help with information about anyone, please supply their email address to Simon at

Boys: Mick Adams, Colin Batchelor, Andrew Cleary, Andrew Clifford, Byron Coopland, Derry Everitt (RIP), Paul Fowler, Tony Glossop, Jeremy Hall, Graham Hunter, Michael Jenkinson, James Johnson, Howard Terry, Clive Thompson, Simon Smith, Steven Smith, Rick Stothard, David Stothard, Nick Ledingham, Mark Reaney, Shaun Coulson, Johnny Stephens, Alistair Weightman, Jamin Wilson, Ian Wiseman, Andrew Scott, David Watson, Steve Wade, Jeremy Robinson, Richard Johnson, Russel Bunyan, Mick Newman, Bill Heally, Jeffrey Spedding (RIP), Phillip Goodacre, Jeremy Hall, Martin Plowes, Paul Bowers, Jeremy Bartle, David Rowley, Chris Hall, Philip Bailey, Ian Heath, Michael Houghton, Douglas Knights, Adam Spencer, Stephen Wilson, Richard Taylor

Girls: Joanne Ellis, Jane Taylor, Jane Yates, Maria Carrotti, Amanda Brewer, Kay Owen, Sharon Neal, Tracey Herrick, Sara Longden, Nancy Reynolds, Ann Knapton, Jane Price, Jane Gillard, Jane Somerville, Janet Hardman, Sally Hare, Jennifer Horsley, Lisa Saunders, Mandy Smith, Debbie Smith, Tracy Timms, Jane Rimmer, Susan Smeeton, Angela Roberts, Claire Sambrook.

Saturday, November 29, 2008


Another of Fresh Start's Chop and Chat sessions is planned for Tuesday, December 9 at Brigg Resource Centre, on Horstead Avenue, from 1pm-3pm.
"Take along your favourite Christmas recipes and adapt to maybe a healthier option," the organisers suggest.
The cost is just £2; for further information contact Fresh Start's Brigg-based community development worker Marilyn Demott, tel (01652) 651127.


Last night was the annual Scunthorpe/Grimsby Telegraph Christmas 'do' - otherwise known as the Brilliance Awards, organised by our parent company, GSMG, at Reed's Hotel, Barton.
It was a glittering event, with fine meal, wine, disco, etc, etc.
In contrast the first Christmas I spent on the old Lincolnshire Times, based at 57 Wrawby Street, Brigg, the entire staff, plus a few of their wives/husbands, had our 'do' in the room above Dunham's baker's shop, in Bridge Street.


Sad to see retailer Woolworths on its knees.
It's store in Wrawby Street, Brigg, now occupied by Martin's, was the top one in the town. Pick n' mix sweets, biscuits, sweets, toys...oh, and household items, too.
Who recalls, during the early 1980s, when the Woolies manageress placed a ban on all children from a certain Brigg school, after allegations of bad behaviour?
That story went national - and earned me a few bob!

Friday, November 28, 2008


Nowadays most folk do their weekly shopping at a large supermarket, Brigg residents being no exception. However, you only have to turn the clock back to the early 1980s for things to have been very different.
William Jackson Ltd, from the North Bank, caused a furore when they announced plans for Brigg's first supermarket(in the riverside premises now occupied by Lidl).
People were worried it would sound the death knell for many shops in Brigg. But, whatever the strength of local feeling, there were no real grounds for refusing planning permission - and the store got the green light from Glanford Borough Council.
Jacksons had a small-ish shop in Wrawby Street at the time - now occupied by Poundstretcher - which closed.
Back then we regarded the new Grandways store (as it was to be branded) as being big. But, by present day standards, it's not that large.
For people's shopping habits have changed - or, to be more precise, they have been changed for us by the likes of Asda, Tesco and Morrisons. Nowadays, Britons think nothing of jumping into the car to go shopping. Not very green, and certainly not as green as having them delivered by pedal power, as was once the norm (boy on bike!)
Older Brigg Blog readers will be able to draw on their memories to consider whether it was more enjoyable and cost-effective to shop at places like Instone's, George Mason's and Davis's compared with going round today's Tesco or Lidl.
Food for thought!


Interesting to see Brigg farmers’ market bags are on sale for £2 at the Tourist Information Centre, just a few yards from the venue for these popular monthly events.
The next farmers’ market will be the special Christmas one on Saturday, December 20, from 9am, in the Market Place. That should draw the biggest crowd of the year.
The first one in the New Year will be on Saturday, January 24.
Now Brigg's is officially the best farmers' market in the UK, according to a survey, can we expect a big influx of folk from far and wide going along for a look?


Tonight (Fri Nov 28) sees another of the popular Rockin nights at Brigg’s Ancholme Inn, on Grammar School Road, with live band Sureshots topping the bill. The fun runs from 8pm until late, and you can pay £6 admission on the door.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


The firm replacing gas pipes in the St Helen's Road/Churchill Avenue area of Brigg is still hard at work - and hasn't done a bad job.
Workers have given householders due notice and done their best to make good the holes they have dug in paths, roads and drives.
Yes, they might have hosed down the streets afterwards, and ours looked for a time like it had had a brush with the Sahara!
Yes, there has been disruption to traffic (particularly along St Helen's Road) with a one-way system employed, controlled by lights.
But, overall, not too disruptive for most of us, as the old pipework needed replacing.
It would have been better done during the summer months, when gas central heating being switched off for the day would not have been an issue. But then, if work had been carried out in the summer, householders would have had to contend with the prospect of wet tar (used to repair paths) being trampled into their homes on shoes.
We understand the gas pipe contractors are to move to another area of Brigg, in due course. But they are not 'doing' the whole town.
We haven't had that officially. For the gas people, unlike their counterparts in the electrical world, have not been as open, or forward looking, on the PR front.
CE, the power people, gave Brigg Town Council full notice of their plans to replace wiring in many of our streets last year - even sending a small team to a public meeting, with councillors present, to explain their timetable and answer any concerns.
Can't remember any of that happening with the current gas contract?


The 3Bs Project, which is providing worthwhile activities for youngsters in Brigg, Broughton and Barnetby, held a committee meeting last night in our Angel Suite, to review the progress being made.
Supervised events provided for youngsters range from DJ sessions to football, hockey and archery.
Brigg town clerk Jeanette Woollard is overseeing the administration of the project, which is being managed by representatives of the three local parish/town councils. Our own Coun Mike Doherty chaired last night's meeting, with Coun Jenny Bell also there to represent Brigg.
The aim is to do something positive for local youngsters, and give them an alternative to hanging around on street corners.
I'm penning a piece to go in Tuesday's Brigg Extra page of the Scunthorpe Telegraph, giving details of 3Bs events on the horizon, one of which involves the visit of a world champion.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


The disappearance from town of another Brigg service had passed me by until the other day when I noticed a ‘To Let’ sign on the imposing detached property which housed the Bains solicitor’s practice for many years.
It is at the junction of Bigby Road and Albert Street, near the zebra crossing.
A notice in the window explains its merger with a firm on the north bank.
David Bains, of the family firm, did a good deal of work at Brigg Magistrates’ Court in the years when the Wrawby Street facility was dishing out justice to wrongdoers in the town and surrounding villages.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Just received today - and together - copies of North Lincolnshire Council's Direct magazine and its equivalent from Lincolnshire County Council. Both delivered by the postal service.
We get Lincolnshire's because we share a postcode with a handful of houses on the outskirts of Brigg which are over the border in West Lindsey. That is, under the overall remit of Lincolnshire County Council, rather than North Lincolnshire Council.
It's been a problem for years now, and no-one in authority has managed to work out how to ensure the few Lincolnshire County Council homes entitled to a copy of the newspaper get one, while missing out the scores of Brigg homes not entitled (and probably not interested) in getting one.
You see, the council folk feel they need to ensure ALL their residents get a copy delivered. They can't take chances.
Surely it would be simple just to write down the address of the handful of homes on Brigg's outskirts and get someone to post them.
How must this is all costing we shall never know. But it must be a good earner for the service being paid to deliver copies to households not entitled to receive them.


Brigg Town Council is increasing the hire charges for various events at the Angel Suite. The facility is used for private birthday parties, indoor bowls, meetings and major events. Here's the full list. Sorry - the software won't allow us to make it any bigger, so print if off for a clearer look.

Monday, November 24, 2008


Brigg town councillors will tonight consider a request to support the application by local residents for The Paddock (off Station Road and near St Clare's Walk) to be granted Village Green Status.
Groups of residents can now contact the Government direct with such applications, using a fairly new law. However, council support never does any harm.
This matter will be considered by the town council's planning and environment committee, meeting in the Angel Suite (6.45pm).
Other planning applications received during the past couple of weeks will also be considered.
From 7.30pm there will be the monthly 'full council' meeting, when matters of interest include:
* Police matters
* Considering applications for the casual vacancy, to fill the seat vacated by Pat Neal, when he resigned from the town council
* Flooding (and related matters)
* Electing a town council representative to the Sir John Nelthorpe School Foundation Trustees (currently ex-town council Bryan Robins).
Both these meetings are open to the public.

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Did you spot Ian Cawsey, the Brigg and Goole MP, busy collecting money for Jerry Green's in the Market Place yesterday morning, in bitterly cold conditions?
We bet it's somewhat warmer in the corridors of power, in Westminster!


A ‘scaled down version’ of United Carpets’ new signs in Brigg could be forthcoming, town clerk Jeanette Woollard suggested to councillors.
And she advised them planning permission seemed to be required for signs at the newly opened shop, near The Monument, on Bigby Road.
Some members of the public have expressed surprise at the size and layout of the signs displayed by the business which has just moved into Brigg.
The issue is being dealt with by North Lincolnshire Council, the planning authority.

Saturday, November 22, 2008


You'll have to act quickly, but there's a place as a town councillor up for grabs – without having to go through the election process.
A casual vacancy exists after the resignation of Coun Patrick Neal. And the town council is inviting applications from people living within three miles of Brigg.
Those interested are asked to submit a brief ‘pen picture’ of themselves, outlining why they would like to be considered for the seat.
Applications will be considered at Monday’s (Nov 24) meeting of the council, in the Angel Suite (7.30pm). Interested people should send their details to the town council office, Exchange Place, Brigg, DN20 8LD. Email
This is the town council’s second attempt to fill the vacancy by co-option, no applications having been received on the first occasion.


A child's cycle is the first prize in the grand raffle being held today as part of Brigg Conservatives' Christmas fair in the Angel Suite, off Market Place (10am-2pm).
Stalls will be selling toys, cakes, books and sweets, and there will be a tombola, plus tea, coffee and cakes available throughout.

Friday, November 21, 2008


There is no longer a container inside the litter bin on Brigg’s Millennium Green, off Elwes Street.
“Somebody has pinched it,” complained Coun Ben Nobbs to fellow town councillors.
Town clerk Jeanette Woollard said the bin was the responsibility of the Millennium Green Trust.
She thought if it was replaced, North Lincolnshire Council would empty the bin.


There is no longer a container inside the litter bin on Brigg’s Millennium Green, off Elwes Street.
“Somebody has pinched it,” complained Coun Ben Nobbs at a council meeting.
Town clerk Jeanette Woollard said the bin was the responsibility of the Millennium Green Trust.
She thought if the bin was replaced, North Lincolnshire Council would empty it.


Some members of the younger element in Brigg think it's time for a change at the annual Christmas lights switch-on in the Market Place.
This year's is coming up on Friday, December 5 - and we will release full details nearer the time - but not everyone is happy with the tried and trusted formula.
This involves the cast of the Scunthorpe Plowright Theatre pantomime donning their costumes and entertaining the audience either side of the Christmas lights being switched on.
My reply to this suggestion has been along the lines of: If it ain't bust, don't mend it!
For most people seem happy with the way the ceremony is handled, and it draws big crowds to the town centre. However, maybe I'm a touch too close to the town council on this one; perhaps you have contrary views.
If so, please post your comment here. Any received - for or against change - will be drawn to the attention of the council, and I'm sure will be taken into consideration for future years.

PS I seem to recall last year one young resident suggested it would be a good idea to get a real star along for the switch-on...maybe the beautiful Beyonce. Great thought but her night's appearance fee would probably cost half the town council's budget for the year, if not the entire precept!

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Generous residents of St Helen’s Road, Brigg, have been thanked for donating £64.90 to a collection for the Royal National Institute for the Blind, carried out by Coun Maureen Glossop on behalf of the charity.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


St John’s Church, Brigg, was full to capacity for the town council’s annual civic service. Some 30 civic dignitaries from other towns on the north and south banks of the Humber, plus
North Lincolnshire Mayor Coun Jawaid Ishaq, attended the event, together with Brigg and Goole MP Ian Cawsey and his wife Linda.
The sermon was delivered by Father Owen Mitchell, vicar of Brigg.
Lessons were read by Steve Pearce, recently retired headteacher of Brigg Primary School, and Town Mayor Coun Mike Campion.
Musical accompaniment was provided by St Mary’s Roman Catholic School and the St John’s Church Music Group.
After the service, the congregation were invited to the Angel Suite for a buffet meal.
The Town Mayor said: “It was a most enjoyable afternoon and we were gratified to see so many people in the church and so many visiting civic heads come along for the occasion.”

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


It could be an interesting meeting of giants today on St Helen's Road, Brigg, when North Lincolnshire Council's refuse and bottle/can collecting vehicles come face to face with the heavy plant being used by the company installing new gas pipes.
There's not much room to squeeze a car down there at present, with one half of the road, in certain places, cordoned off by the gas pipe people.
It begs the question: Do the contractors realise it's bin collection day?
Hopefully, everyone's bins/boxes will get collected.
Otherwise, someone, somewhere in authority it going to hear about it!

Monday, November 17, 2008


Posters aimed at getting motorists to keep their speed down to 20mph in residential areas have been received by Brigg Town Council, through Pete Scott (pictured), North Lincolnshire’s head of safer roads.
The posters aim to get the road safety message across to drivers living on, or visiting, housing estates.
Coun Ann Eardley expressed concern Atherton Way, where Brigg’s new school is located, has a 30mph limit, rather than 20mph.
Coun Maureen Glossop said they had ‘tried and tried’ to have it reduced.


The new Brigg Lunch Club - overseen by Fresh Start, serving the area's over-50s - is held tomorrow (Tues Nov 18) at the Ancholme Inn, Grammar School Road, Brigg (12.30pm).
The two-course lunch costs £5.50p. To book your place and obtain further information, contact Fresh Start's Brigg-based community worker, Marilyn Demott (pictured), at the Resource Centre, on Horstead Avenue. Tel (01652) 651127. Failing that, ring (01724) 277906.
There's also a Tuesday Crafters session tomorrow, when Helen Danson's topic is embroidery. The session, costing £2, will run from 10am-noon at the Resource Centre.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Teenagers in Brigg will be able to enjoy a 'Christmas event' organised by the 3Bs Project. It will be on a Friday evening and organised by the street leaders.
Similar events will also be held in Broughton and Barnetby.
A spring/summer It's a Knockout for young people is also been suggested.
Watch Brigg Blog and the Scunthorpe Extra page in the Scunthorpe Telegraph for details.

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Could Brigg Town Council be leading the way with 21st century technology?
That question was posed when the authority held its monthly review of its website
The town council has a presence on MySpace – a popular international networking site – and uploads podcasts - sound recordings of the Town Mayor’s comments on Brigg topics which visitors to the website can download to listen to when they want.
Coun Julian Kidd (pictured) wondered whether any other town and parish councils in England had such technology in place.
“It would be useful to know what percentage do it,” he suggested.
Deputy Town Mayor, Coun James Truepenny, who oversees the podcasts, said he would do a Google search on the internet but thought Brigg might be the only one on MySpace.
To take a look at the podcasts, visit

Friday, November 14, 2008


A Brigg venue has been chosen for the annual general meeting of Brocklesby Park Cricket Club, to be held at the Black Bull, in Wrawby Street, on Wednesday, November 26 (8pm).
The club's membership includes a number of people who live in Brigg, or who used to live here, plus some who work in the town, or used to go to local schools.
Many of the Brock Park lads get into Brigg for a beer or two after matches.
I'm sure Keith Smith was club treasurer when I first started playing for Brocklesby in the mid-1980s. Of course, many Brigg sporting types will know him better for the magnificent service given to Brigg Hockey Club as first team manager, but also for an enjoyable spell as fourth team captain, among other posts held.
Brocklesby Park CC can trace its history back well into Victorian times, and still plays its home games on hallowed turf within the Earl of Yarborough's estate.
Richard Bedwell, who has strong Brigg connections, has supplied the following agenda for the Brock Park AGM:
1. Register/Apologies
2. Minutes of last AGM (Dave Williamson)
3. Matters Arising from Minutes
4. Chairman's Report (Graham White)
5. Secretary's Report (Dave Williamson)
6. Treasurer's Report (Keith Smith)
7. Election of Officers:
i) President
ii) Chairman
iii) Vice-Chairman
iv) Honorary Secretary
v) Honorary Treasurer
vi) Fixture Secretary
vii) East Lindsey League Captain
viii) East Lindsey League Vice-Captain
ix) West Wold League Captain
x) Friendly Captain
xi) Welfare Officer

8. Forthcoming Dates:
i) Nets
ii) Club Dinner
iii) Meetings

9. Any Other Business


Last night's annual meeting of Brigg Town Cricket Club at the Nelthorpe Arms (Scanlon's) was not particularly well attended. But that's nothing new for such get-togethers in Brigg, whatever the club, society or organisation involved.
Robert Todd (pictured) chaired the meeting, with Lee Fielden delivering the secretary's report and Dylan Hildreth dealing with the cash side of things. Finances seem healthy - by cricket club standards!
Lee, Jack Richards and Gary Smith gave encouraging reports about the youth teams - sides are run from under-11 up to under-17 - and Joe Hebblewhite reported on the debut season in the West Wold Midweek League.
Brigg Town's first team finished third in East Yorkshire Alliance division three, with the second team runners-up in division four. The Sunday team also held its own in the North Lindsey League.
Second team skipper Phil Dewfall, who was unable to make the meeting, is to continue in the post next season but will get some experienced help, as Dave Willey has returned to the club for which he made his debut in 1974.
As regular Blog and Scunthorpe Telegraph readers may be aware, Brigg Town's first team has been re-elected to the Lincolnshire League for 2009, and will play in division four.
Prospective new members, of whatever age, should contact Lee Fielden, tel 07787715825.


Some Brigg shops stay empty for a long time, so it's good to see the Wrawby Street premises only recently vacated by Cooplands (who have moved across the road) are about to reopen.
Moving in will be boutique Coco, offering home furnishings, jewellery and gifts.
Sounds like an interesting speciality shop.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


The theft of the postbox near the junction of Birch Avenue and Almong Grove, Brigg, is creating unforseen problems.
After it was stolen, the Royal Mail revealed it would not be erecting a replacement, which was bad news in itself, if you live on the Newlands of Chartdale estates, as you now have to walk, or drive, much further to post your letters.
However, Coun Ann Eardley (pictured, who lives on Newlands, has revealed that now there's no postbox to get in the way, some impatient drivers are cutting the corner, across the grass verge.
I haven't heard any complaints from residents who feel the postbox should have been replaced. But that's not to say people aren't unhappy about the situation.
If you feel pressure should be put on the authorities to install a new one, please post a comment below, with your name and address, or email
Brigg Blog will pass on any comments received.


Brigg Town Cricket Club is holding its annual general meeting tonight at the Nelthorpe Arms (Scanlon’s), in Bridge Street (7pm).
If you are interested in playing the game yourself, or maybe have young members of the family who are, why not pop along?
The club runs a selection of junior sides, plus two for men playing on Saturday and one senior team which plays on Sunday. There is also a midweek men's team.
It's a friendly club, whose first team has just reclaimed a place in the area's senior competition, the Lincolnshire League.
Homes games are played at Brigg Recreation Ground, off Wrawby Road.
I hope to get along myself, other things permitting.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


War pensioner Charles Brindley has expressed a personal opinion about yesterday's marking of the 90th anniversary of Armistace Day in our town.
Charles explains: "I have just returned from the war memorial in Brigg, being it was on the 11th hour of the 11th day in November, 1918, some 90 years to the hour that the guns fell silent over western Europe, a war as it was then reported, to end all wars.
"I was half-hoping that there would have been representation from Brigg Town Council at least. How wrong could I have been? And given this was the 90th anniversary of the end of the Great War, I hoped that our civic leaders would have led from the front and been there to show their respect for all those who, over a lifetime, have given their lives for Queen and Country.
"However, I ask myself is it just general apathy of all the population, or the lack of interest by the few? After all if YOU have not served with bullets and bombs going off around you, how are you supposed to know what it means to show the respect that is due?"
At this point is should be stressed there is some 'history' - if we can call it that - between Mr Brindley and the town council, on the question of Remembrance Sunday. He has tried, unsuccessfully, to get the authority to hold our Act of Remembrance at exactly 11am, along with the televised one in London, attended by Her Majesty The Queen.
However, for many, many years, Brigg's ceremony has been held nearer to noon - after the service at St John's Church. Earlier this year, after representations from Mr Brindley, the council raised the issue at a public meeting in the town and debated the Remembrance timing at length - before deciding to stay with the current practice.
Insp Brett Rutty, head of policing in the area, suggested there might be a problem with traffic control on the A18 if Brigg moved to 11am, as he has only limited resources and other demands for officers' time in different places in the district.
This year, the town council also produced banners - put up in Bridge Street and on Wrawby Road, near The Monument - to inform townspeople when the road would be closed while the ceremony was taking place.
However, Mr Brindley is still insisting it should be 11am, feeling his request has been ignored. "Perhaps had all those on the Town Council served before the Crown, then they would fully comprehend the importance of the 11th hour, the moment the armistice was signed and the horror of that war ceased," he says.
"Over the past six or so years, the importance of this commemoration is equally, if not MORE important than is has been for many a year, perhaps since Korea. As our servicemen and women face such intense fighting, although it’s no that easy to see who the enemy is, they still have to do their duty, making themselves targets before they are able to engage the enemy."
Town councillors are sure to agree with those final sentiments. The authority puts a lot of hard work into organising the event, including the parade. It's always a very dignified ceremony, whatever time it is held.
My grandad Charles Taylor (1896-1990) was a First World War veteran who lived in Brigg all his life, apart from his time in the forces, where he was a sergeant. Throughout the Second World War he was an NCO in Brigg's Home Guard. Charles, who worked for Layne's garage in Bigby Street, was one of the stalwarts of the British Legion in Brigg well into his 80s, organised poppy collections, and was always well to the fore at Brigg's annual Remembrance ceremony.
I never heard him complain about the time chosen for Brigg to lay its wreaths and sound The Last Post at the Monument.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


A final assessment of increased hire charges for Brigg's Angel Suite will be considered by town councillors meeting tomorrow.
Suggested new rates for the loss-making community venue will be looked at by members of the property and services committee, likely to meet at 7.30pm.
That get-together follows one by the planning and environment committee, which will be considering Tesco's amended application for an extension to its store in Barnard Avenue. The planning meeting will start at 7pm.
Both meetings will be held in the Angel Suite, off Market Place, and are open to the public, if you wish to go along. You can listen, but not speak.
See you there?


Passers-by on Bigby Street early this morning - hours before the Prep School was due to open its doors - will have been interested by a banner calling for the facility to be kept open, rather than closed.
As revealed last week, the school is to merge with one in Hull, and pupils will need to be taken over the Humber Bridge for their lessons when the new term starts in January.
The banner looks like the work of a children, or children, and includes the messages:

We love Brigg Prep
Give us back our school
It's not fair
Don't shut our school

How long the banner will remain attached to the school railings remains to be seen.

Monday, November 10, 2008


Coopland's new shop in Wrawby Street is already a front-runner for next year's Brigg Town Civic Award, presented by the town council to the top-notch building project.
The rundown state of the former Shoefayre shop, which even had a tree growing out of the chimney, drew complaints from passers-by and councillors.
However, bakery chain Cooplands has totally transformed the Dutch-style building.

Sunday, November 09, 2008


Poles are getting in the way on the River Ancholme towpath. No, not immigrants from eastern Europe, but anglers leaving their fishing poles across what is a public footpath.
Brigg Town Council has flagged up this problem before, and it has been drawn to the attention of the body which oversees angling in the area. Yet, the other day, on a small stretch of towpath on the Old River, there were three poles you had to step over.
Not so bad if you are able-bodied, but what about the elderly and disabled, wheelchair users and those with pushchairs? Should if really be necessary to have to ask the anglers to move their fishing poles off the towpath so you can get past?
I noted one angler - and just one - using what we will call an old-fashioned fishing rod, not a pole. He had no gear fouling the footpath.
So maybe that's the answer on this stretch: Make anglers stick to traditional rods and don't allow the poles, if people can't be trusted to keep clear of the footpath.

Saturday, November 08, 2008


Should really have got a picture of this, but maybe you've noticed the two Halloween pumpkin lanterns propped up on top of the door in Bigby Street, almost opposite the Dying Gladiator. Presumably they were illuminated on October 31 but have yet to be taken down.


Senior men's football returned to Brigg Recreation Ground this afternoon.
However, it was due to a Scunthorpe club's facilities being unavailable - not because some more Saturday sides have been formed in Brigg.
One of the matches involved Brigg-based Briggensians (based at Sir John Nelthorpe School), who made the short trip across town for their 'away' fixture against opponents who had travelled much further for their home game!
As we've said before in Brigg Blog, it's a shame our two senior Rec pitches usually stand idle, week after week.
Youth football seems to be thriving in the Scunthorpe area, but where will all these teenagers find a game at men's level, when they get a bit older?
STOP PRESS: Just received a text message with a bit more information about the matches going on at the Rec - AFC Brumby v Coningsby, Lincs Junior Cup, and Brumby Reserves v Briggensians. Rec being used owing to Scunthorpe pitches being unfit.

See next Tuesday's Brigg Extra page in the Scunthorpe Telegraph for some exciting news about the future of our municipal sportsground. Especially if you are interested in football, hockey or netball.

Friday, November 07, 2008


How surprising it was to get a tip-off that the closure of the Brigg Preparatory School site was about to be announced. The handy hint proved to be a very good one, and we soon received the official statement to confirm what we'd been told was going to happen.
The Prep School announcement seemed to come out of the blue to all our elected representatives - and shock news it was, too.
It is going to be a great loss to the town, and pupils having to be transported daily to Hull for lessons at a partner school will pose obvious difficulties for families.
Certainly, as Coun Tom Glossop has rightly said, the absence of Prep pupils in Brigg, next March, is potentially damaging for the annual Music and Drama Festival, in which the School plays a very important part.
Now I've never been on the Prep School premises, as far as I can remember. Not even while working for the Lincolnshire Times at 57 Wrawby Street.
And, having been raised on a Brigg council estate (nothing wrong with that!) I was never of the social class to hanker after a place at 'The Prep' back in the 1960s, even if the money had been available.
Later, at Brigg Grammar, the few of us from Brigg County Primary who got through the dreaded 11-Plus were teamed up with many others who had been to Brigg's private school. Maybe going to Prep gave them a head start, maybe not. We got on OK, and whether your house had an outside 'lav' across the yard or one inside a centrally-heated detached home in an affluent area of town was never a topic of playground conversation. Nor was what your dad did for a living, as far as I can recall.
But returning to the present, come January it won't seem the same driving, or walking, down Bigby Street and passing the school standing empty.
The Prep is a fine, distinctive building, and thoughts will now turn to what might happen to it, once pupils and staff have gone.
No doubt that will be revealed in due course. But if it involves 'change of use' we can be sure of some warning as that will have to be made public.
We will be keeping an eye on the latest planning applications, as always, and will let you know if anything interesting arises.


Uncertainty exists about the stockpile of sandbags to be used to protect homes in the event of flooding in Brigg.
The issue was raised at Wednesday's town council policy committee meeting by Coun Penny Smith, who said no-one seemed to know the location of our sandbags.
Coun Ben Nobbs, the town's flood warden, said they were in a container - and he suggested a North Lincolnshire Council officer who would know the location.

Thursday, November 06, 2008


Many Brigg residents, and visitors, will have already seen the signs giving warning that the A18, near The Monument, will be closed either side of noon on Sunday while the town pays its respects to those servicmen who lost their lives.
In a welcome move, Brigg Town Council has had large banners created to warn motorists, well in advance, that the A18 will be closed for half-ah-hour on Remembrance Sunday, so they can find an alternative route (presumably via Glebe Road).
Town clerk Jeanette Woollard has issued the following helpful information:

The Parade will form up in Station Road at 10.25am, ready to move off at 10.35am for the service at St John the Evangelist Parish Church, which will commence at 10.50am. The Parade will enter the church via the Wrawby Street entrance.
Following the service the parade will re-form in Wrawby Street, before proceeding to the War Memorial for the Wreath Laying ceremony and Sounding of Calls. The Parade will return to Station Road to dismiss.
All local ex-servicemen and women are very welcome to attend and join the parade; no invitations are necessary.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008


The air really turned blue in Cary Lane the other night. The language from a group of youngsters near the bus stop was terrible. And their outbursts were loud. Very loud.
This would seem to back up the results of a national survey, revealed in the Scunthorpe Telegraph and other newspapers, which suggests 'hoodies' are viewed with suspicion by a surprisingly high proportion of adults in Yorkshire and Humberside.
Through its 3Bs project, Brigg Town Council is trying to offer something for youngsters to do, rather than roam the streets. That's a very worth aim, but it's not going to be an easy task.
It's several years now since bus companies stopped using Cary Lane after dark because of concerns about youngsters hanging about there.
Now you can't expect the police to be everywhere, every minute of the day. And the resources at the disposal of the good Insp Rutty are very limited. But it's a fact Brigg police station is only a good stone's throw from the bus stop in Cary Lane.
Still, if arrests were made, there's no reason to think the Crown Prosecution Service would take things to court. And, if cases did get that far, what sentences would be handed out?


So North Lincolnshire Council has decided the three sites it put forward for consideration as possible gypsy traveller sites in Brigg are unsuitable - and has, instead, selected ones in Scunthorpe and Barton for further consideration.
The suggested sites in Brigg were all off Station Road, on the council's own land.
This will be seen by many as a victory for commonsense - and democracy - as lots of Brigg people voiced opposition to land near Station Road being used in this way.
To put a traveller site on The Paddock - the area of green space behind Hewson House - would have damaged an area renowned for its flora, fauna and wildlife.
To put a site behind the railway station, on what is now scrub land (see picture), would have been unfair to the travellers. Who would want to live in a metal caravan, just a few yards from a line which carries heavy, noisy, rumbling freight trains?
On safety grounds it would also have been a poor mix to have young children near to those fast-moving trains.
What do you think?

Tuesday, November 04, 2008


This morning's unpleasantly heavy drizzle highlighted a couple of issues with the bus shelter on Bridge Street, Brigg, opposite Peacock and Binnington's premises.
Firstly, the 'open' design means that although waiting passengers have a roof over their heads, there are no sides, or front, to the structure, which makes the public transport supporters very open to the elements.
Secondly, only one small pane of glass remains at the back of the shelter. Vandals have repeatedly smashed the glass, so no-one can really blame North Lincolnshire Council for not replacing the missing panes.
However, the design of these bus shelters - seemingly standard issue by the council - does not offer anything like as much protection as the 'all enclosed' type favoured by Network Rail at Barnetby railway station (see picture).
Now that's what I call a proper bus shelter - even if it is for train-users!


Tomorrow (Wednesday) will see Brigg Town Council being asked to donate to a charity supporting injured soldiers and the families of those killed while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Major General Sir Evelyn Webb-Carter says more cash is needed to help those in need. He has written to Brigg's Town Mayor and Mayoress, Coun Mike and Ann Campion. And the General's request for a donation will be considered by the town council's policy committee, meeting in the Angel Suite, off Market Place, from 7.30pm.
Other items of interest on the agenda include:
1) A report on the creation of a Brigg Emergency Plan, to help in times of trouble and strife.
2) A 'briefing' on the Beacon Town Forum and the 'initiatives currently being progressed'. This looks like involving Coun John Berry (pictured), one of the Brigg area's three representatives on North Lincolnshire Council.
The meeting is open to the public. See you there?

Monday, November 03, 2008


It's good to see United Carpets coming to town and taking over the former Spa showroom, adjoining The Monument.
The building has not been empty for long, and is currently being conveted for use by the carpet firm, which plans to open for business on Saturday.


The Oxfam Bookshop in Brigg is today celebrating its fifth anniversary.
Mrs D.G.Darley (manager) says: "Come and buy a book, CD,DVD, videotape, audiotape, audiobook or sheet music on Monday, and try a sample of Fairtrade chocolate;
a wide range of Fairtrade food is available to purchase in the nearby Oxfam clothes shop. As a thank-you to all our kind customers and donors, we are having a sale all week (Monday,November 3 to Saturday, November 8). The shop is open from 8.45am until 4.45pm, Monday to Saturday."
New volunteers are always welcome. Please call in for an application form, or telephone 01652 659434.