Scunthorpe might not be the foremost glamorous place in Great Britain, but it makes up for that decidedly because of its unique character and culture. Here are 11 great belongings you can only neutralize our fair town.
1. Take a free tour on a train on a Saturday around the 2,000-acres of British Steelworks in Scunthorpe, because of the Appleby Frodingham RPS.
2. A sing-along to Smoke Gets in Your Eyes adds to the fun.
3. Visit the Sainsbury’s supermarket in Henderson Avenue and check out to work out where the centre spot was on the Old Show Ground stadium, once home to Scunthorpe United.
4. Cross the Frodingham Footbridge between Station Road and Rowland Road in the dark – singing You’ll Never Walk Alone.
5. Find the places mentioned by the late author Ted Lewis in his books about the cult gangster hero Jack Carter, famously played by Michael Caine within the film Get Carter. The movie may are transplanted to Gateshead, but Lewis was a North Lincolnshire lad. Score bonus points if you discover where our Jack visited Sunday School!
6. Try a pint of a true Scunthorpe drink – Snakebite. Strong bitter mixed with strong cider – not that soft stuff with lager!
7. Scunthorpe has more streets named after league teams than Hull and Grimsby put together. Find and name them.
8. Have a pint in Harry’s Bar in Ashby High Steet and ask the regulars why the venue in its former life was called The Bunch.
9. Write a letter to Santa Claus from St Nicholas House.
10. Find the Scunthorpe street which became a title of a song by Amazing Blondel on a best-selling album.
11. Eat a cheese and onion crisp sandwich. Cheese and onion flavour was invented 50 years ago by Golden Wonder, the official crisp-makers of Scunthorpe – the sandwich goes down a treat with a Snakebite!
Full disclosure – I’m not Scunthorpe born and bred.
Until a couple of months ago, I’d barely visited the town – it had been just somewhere I passed on the M180.
But since I’ve started covering the world with Scunthorpe Live, I’ve come to understand and like it. It’s filled with character, filled with interesting people and always filled with news.
However, there are certain things that have struck me as I’ve got familiarised myself with Scunny. There are good ideas that other towns could learn from, parts of the culture I might never have expected and a few slang that’s just plain funny.
For better or worse, these are the items that make Scunthorpe stand out.
1. Roundabouts are called circles
“The very first thing you would like to understand about Scunthorpe is we call roundabouts circles,” I used to be told on my first day at Scunthorpe Live as I took a tour of the town.
My attempts at humour didn’t go down well (“Do you call roads lines as well?”) but I’ve come to understand the simplicity of calling something that’s circular a circle.
There’s no point arguing with people thereupon it’s called a roundabout, so you would possibly also accept it.
2. And what exactly are ‘tenfoots’?
One phrase that I even have more trouble getting my head around is looking an alley a “tenfoot”. I’ve not measured them but I’m pretty sure you will not find many who are exactly 10ft wide.
It’s not even descriptive within the way that “circle” is. many things are often ten feet long or wide.
Rather than lines, we could always follow that logic and call roads twenty-foots – but which may just get confusing.
3. Police are always on the beat
Listening to the national news, it isn’t unusual to listen to people complaining: “You never see the police anymore.”
That’s not dragging in Scunthorpe – whenever you enter the town centre or maybe have a drive around, you usually seem to identify a minimum of two Bobbies keeping an eye fixed on things.
It cannot be a simple job, patrolling the streets during this weather, but they keep at it all year round and that we thank them for that.
4. The steelworks dominate the landscape
The one thing I did know once I arrived in Scunthorpe was its history as Britain’s steel capital. What I wasn’t expecting was how prominent the steelworks still are, and the way important they’re to the town.
Everyone knows someone or is said to someone who is or was employed at the steelworks. albeit the industry isn’t quite the employer it once was, British Steel remains an enormous a part of the town’s identity.
5. The town centre is fully pedestrianised on some nights
Walking back to my car after a late-night meal within the town centre, I realised barriers had swung closed across the road, blocking it off. What had happened – a crash? A fight?
No, I soon acknowledged – this is often standard practise for weekends in Scunthorpe, because the town centre is pedestrianised.
It took a touch of your time to urge won’t to walking within the middle of the road as people spillover of clubs and bars, but I even have to applaud it. In terms of keeping people safe, it’s one among Scunthorpe’s best innovations.