Friday, 6 November 2009

Jeremy Vine gets a Taste of the North

My husband has just called me. He had spent the night in Manchester having attended the Manchester Evening News Business of the Year awards dinner. N was up on stage presenting the last award after a fairly riotous evening in the best northern tradition. Anyway, seems that Jeremy Vine, as the celebrity host, was on stage with him - and just before N presented the last award in a decidedly upbeat and banter-filled atmosphere, old JV strides over to him beaming all over his face and says 'this is a good awards ceremony, isn't it!'

And you know what, that's one of the truly great things about living up here and a big difference between north and south (she says sweepingly) - they really know how to enjoy themselves and it's an immensely endearing quality. The south can be so self-conscious, so anonymous at times. Here you always feel part of the pack. There's a solidarity, I think, which comes out of this corner of England (true, I'm sure, of the north-east too). It will be born out of many things on which I can only speculate: being further away from the nation's capital the larger cities naturally forge their own identity (just like Bordeaux, Lyon, Toulouse, Lille - to name a few - in France); the relative harshness of the weather and the strong work ethic. This was the heart of the industrial revolution, after all. Certainly, there is a resilience to the people up here. Their feet seem firmly planted on the ground. No pretence. What you see is what you get.

And in the current economic climate, it is good to see something positive - to learn that hard work, dedication, determination, innovation can still pay dividends. It will be interesting to see if Jeremy mentions any of last night on his show later today.

6 comments:

mountainear said...

I arrived in Manchester in 1971 and spent the next 30+ years trying to find an escape route. Now, having found that bolt hole on the border of Shropshire and Wales find myself strangely nostalgic for that northern grit.

The rumours of the MEN's iminent demise are obviously just that then?

Catharine Withenay said...

So true, so true. Northerners have a different approach to life and I, for one, love it.

elizabethm said...

speaking as a northerner, born but not bred (went to NZ for a while) I love the north. Have lived and worked in London for years too and it is one of my favourite cities but what you have described is very manchester!

Mark said...

I think what you say is broadly true, something about community and values. You find it Wales to, especially the South Wales Valleys; less so in Cardiff.

I'm off to Peak District this weekend - so if you seesomeone on Stanage Edge who looks like he's pondering a blog post, it is probably me - as might be the bloke with a laptop and kids running wild in Hathersage cafe

family affairs said...

Funny whilst N was doing that I was at a book launch of a girl who is in my book group with N's brother and Johnny Vaughan!! Funny old world - hope all OK with you - must talk soon Lxxx

Jeremy said...

Hello this is Jeremy! Yes it was great. What a night. Lovely to meet your hubby too. Please say hi. JV

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