NORTH EAST OFF THE MAP
By Brian Hall
Sunday 14 Oct 2012 15:01:00
Browse all Brian Hall articles
 

 

The other week, I found out that, according to a Tory MP, that the North East did not exist! This came as a blow. I had always thought that I was born in this region, I kind of got used to the NE being ignored, dismissed, written off, and rubbished. But to be told that we were not even a region took some taking. To say the least.

 

Apparently, this bloke, of whom I had never heard , and cannot, honestly, remember his name when he launched himself into writing us off the map, said we were just a bunch of divided people, and we had no identity.  Now, that is a bit, a wee bit, ower the top. His logic, or so he said, was based on the fact that we are aal just Geordies, Mackems, and Smoggies, and have different opinions on all kinds of stuff. I suppose, if I was treating him seriously, I could have pointed out our history, culture, geography, and a helluva lot more besides.

 

I thought about sending him a line of two, but I could not be arsed. The Journal, along with all kinds of organisations ranging from the world of commerce, sport, you name it, got stuck in, rapidly. They did the job for me.

 

It was pointed out that whatever else the NE is, we have a pretty common culture, for example. Mining, engineering, steel, shipbuilding, sprang to mind.  The views of this MP - best to call him that rather than a Total Pillock - seemed to be based on the fact that our proud region was just a hotchpotch of divided peoples. And he added that we all had different views on all kinds of things, let alone our identiry. From the top of Northumberland down to the Tees.

 

 Mmm. Leaving aside parts of Europe who are so passionate about their own areas, I thought of places closer to home. Yorkshire. Cornwall. Scotland. Now, I would hardly call Yorkshire united, ranging from lack of unity amongst its political views, all the way to their footy or rugby allegiances. But you try telling a YorkshireMan, or Woman, that their identity means nowt, and you will get short shrift, if you are lucky that is! I know Cornwall too. They do tend to be a tiny bit passionate about being Cornish - but they have their divisions, for sure.

 

And so to Scotland. Well, where to start? The Glasgae are a great bunch, but when it comes to football, for example, things aint exactly harmonious agreement time. Of course, they generally tend to share a canny dislike of.......Edinburgh. That sentiment is returned from our near neighbours up in that city.

 

 Up the road, some of the Highlanders dont regard any of the Central Belt as proper Jocks! And it goes to say, they all have very different views on all kinds of things. But try, or maybe dont actually, popping across the Border, and saying that the Scots have no identity. 

 

In a time when the Big Derby looms, I do think it is appropriate to say we are all NorthEasterners, in our many distinct ways. We are not ganna be abolished by some buffoon who says we have no common identity. I have been proud of our region all my life, and remain so. 

 

And that does not mean I want all the North East teams to do well! I hate that phrase. I love stuffing the SAFC in derbies, and smile when we beat the Smoggies too.

 

But our region remains on the map, for sure. Long after that Pillock, sorry Tory MP, has long since departed to the South.

 

 

tarah. Bry

 

a durham north eastern Mag..and bloody proud of it!



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