Posts Tagged ‘Cheshire’

Gradbach Mill (day 2)

This is day 2 of a trip to a Youth Hostel (which opened in 1984) called Gradbach Mill. It seems like an odd name to me. Looking up the history tells us the name possibly comes from a Henry Gratebach mentioned as living in the area in 1374.

We decided on the full breakfast to start us off: orange juice, grapefruit, cereal, big fry-up, toast, & tea. We set off walking up the hill. Initially on the road we soon came to a turn off and began the cross country stuff. OS map in hand we were making for a village I’ve mentioned in a previous post but will keep it as a surprise for now. Here’s a narrow bridge over a stream

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Then just a bit further on a TV aerial attached to a drystone wall. We couldn’t immediately see which house might be using it but closer inspection revealed the wire to it was broken. It does show how difficult it is to get reception in the area and the lengths people will go to to try and get a signal. (You might remember I mentioned that the hostel didn’t have any for TV, phones or PC.)

After crossing a few more fields we were onto tarmac for a short while. The road had been resurfaced recently and there was a 10mph speed limit sign. Here it is.

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This gentleman had obviously fallen over. We deduced he had probably been running and therefore exceeded the speed limit causing him to end up flat on the road. (He seems to be pointing at the sign to warn us.) We thanked him and moved on. There wasn’t time to help him but we hoped he was ok.

Across a few more fields and we were nearing our target. Here’s the sign

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Yes, it’s the sign for a village called Flash. If you remember the post from 10.4.13 (I is for interesting) you will know that this is the village whose height above sea level has been measured and found to be the highest in England and in fact the whole UK. We wondered what to expect but set off on the 1 mile to get there indicated by the sign; not surprisingly it was all uphill! The edge of the village is some way out from the houses and here’s the sign. Shortly after, a cyclist went past us and we almost felt as if we should be cheering and running alongside like they do in the Tour De France and maybe shouting Allez-allez. We didn’t.image

And a little further on in the village itself we saw this sign on the wall of the pub

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Yes that’s right – the highest pub in the British Isles. If you need an edge that’s not a bad one is it? After 2 hours walking across fields, up hill and down dale we were ready for a quick stop: a drink in the highest pub in the UK would be nice. We knocked on the door and were told that it didn’t open till 4pm! (It was 10.58am.) There are some who believe the term “flash money” comes from the alleged counterfeiting of banknotes in the village. It’s a nice idea and seems to fit but it’s probably an inference made from a novel (Flash) written in 1928 by Judge Alfred Ruegg rather than historical facts.

The next building was the old schoolhouse.

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And a little bit further

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Of course there’s no “new” police station.

We carried on and came to the local primary school. Here’s the sign.

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Now read that motto under the logo at the top: ‘Reaching Ever Higher’. Remember where we are – the highest village in the UK! I liked that. However after a bit of research and a conversation with a local person we found out that the school was actually closed. Apparently, in Sept 2012, the school roll fell from 7 in 2011 to zero pupils and the school closed at the end of Dec 2012. The local council said that in the last 10 years only one child had been born in the catchment area. Property prices also meant it was difficult to attract younger families to the area. The village had had a school for over 250 years (since 1760) so very sad it could not continue. (The Ofsted inspection in April last year gave a figure of over £22,000 funding required for each pupil; a comparable figure for my local urban primary school is £3,700 per pupil.)

Next building of interest was this one

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It looks like a large square house but originally it was a Wesleyan Chapel built in 1784 (and rebuilt in 1821 according to the date stone). There were 60 members of the Methodist Society which grew to 90 by 1790. In the 1851 Census there were 180 attending the evening service. It closed in 1974 and, as with many old chapels, is now a private house.

We walked on. Although a fair way out of the village we came to a place called “Flash Bar Stores And Coffee Shop”. We got some food here as it was almost lunch time. As we sat outside this vehicle pulled up in the parking area next to us.

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On the top right above the windscreen you might be able to see “Your Library”. Yep that’s right in these more isolated places there is no local library so the villages depend on a mobile one. I spoke to the driver who told me he covers quite a large area. Each stop has a scheduled time so people know when to expect him. While we were there a couple of folks came; one lady had an armful of books. I do hope this service will keep going as it’s a big help for those who can’t get to the town libraries often miles away.

After lunch we walked all of 20 feet (6 metres) across to the Traveller’s Rest for a drink. The place had a bit of a theme of “ye olde England” with the toilets being labelled – Knights & Damsels.

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Soon it was time to head off as we were only half way round on our walk and it had taken 4½ hours so far. (Lunch and drink though had taken longer than we had anticipated!)

On a lane we came to one of those stalls left unattended with an honesty box for stuff you buy. Although we didn’t buy anything there was a note hanging on it

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I think you can probably read it. Imagine that a colony of Wallabies once existed in the Staffordshire Moorlands.

This next pic looks simply like a stone bridge.

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Could be anywhere? No, this is quite a special place called “Three Shires’ Head”. It’s the point on Axe Edge Moor where the borders of 3 English counties meet: Cheshire, Derbyshire & Staffordshire. It’s an 18th century packhorse bridge over the River Dane; remember that’s the river that our Youth Hostel in its original incarnation used to drive the big water wheel that powered the mill machinery.

The rest of the route back had one difficult part. We came to a field of cows and of course we needed to be the other side. When you get close up to cows you realise just how big they are and how easily just 2 or 3 could cause you a lot of damage. You don’t mess with cows, you will lose! (Same for horses by the way – when our kids were younger we were walking across a field and a herd of horses surrounded us. Unsure of how to react, and being townies, we tried to push our way through. Man versus horse – another one you’re not going to win. Fortunately something took their attention and a small gap appeared so we could make our escape.) We skirted the herd of cows keeping close eye on them. Heads came up and a few started heading towards us. We took a bigger sweep out onto a farm track behind another wall before coming back into their field and heading for the stile at the other side.

And soon we were back at the hostel. Then it was evening meal, more backgammon & head off to bed for night 2. We liked this place.

 

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Gradbach Mill

Good morning all. I’ve got a guest post from Rambler5319 for you today. Sit back and enjoy.

 

I recently visited an area of Staffordshire which is close to a point where three different counties meet: not surprisingly it’s called Three Shires Head. The three shires are Cheshire, Derbyshire & Staffordshire and they meet on the SW end of Axe Edge Moor. We stayed in a Youth Hostel called Gradbach Mill.

It’s interesting to look at the Ordnance Survey Map of the area and see some of the place/farm names. Here is a sample all within a few miles: Hangingstone Farm, Burntcliff Top, Hawk’s Nest, Wolf Edge, Old Hag, Gun End Farm, Spring Head, Wildstone Rock, Adder’s Green, Daffodil Farm, Green Gutter Head, Far Hole Edge, Cut-Thorn, Wildboarclough & Thick Withins. (If you’re thinking Wuthering Heights that was supposedly Top Withins/Withens and of course in Yorkshire.) Don’t tell me they don’t conjure up a picture, in your mind, of days gone by with very primitive living conditions and people walking across rainy windswept moorland and valley areas (or is that just me remembering Kate Bush).

Bit of history to start. The mill was probably built in the 18th century and was restored after a fire there in 1785. In the reign of George III (1760-1820) imports of flax and hemp had duty charges placed on them and subsidies were given to try to stimulate the domestic production; the mill was initially involved in flax production. The reason for it being in a rather isolated spot is because it was the River Dane that provided the power via a very large waterwheel. Check out the stats on the wheel (which is no longer there): diameter 38 feet (11.6 metres), 96 buckets each one holding 35 gallons (159 litres), one complete turn of the wheel, via the gearing wheels, is believed to have turned the main shaft inside 2,500 times. That’s one big wheel! In later years the mill produced silk but that finished in the 1870s. The next owner used it as a saw mill and for joinery work. At some point in the 20th century the YHA took it over.

It’s only as you drive to the place that you realise how isolated it is because back then most people would be walking.

Here’s a pic of the mill.

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And here’s a reminder of the raison d’etre for the whole Youth Hostel Association. The original idea of Youth Hostels came from a German schoolteacher over 100 years ago and the first English ones opened in the early 1930s.
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We booked in and grabbed the bottom bunks in our room to save struggling up/down from the top. A quick change and we set off for short(ish) walk. This sign was just opposite the front entrance to the hostel so we headed that way.

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We were interested in seeing what Lud’s Church was as we didn’t think there would be a church in the middle of the woods in an isolated river valley.

This is the start of the path

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It was totally quiet. Not a sound apart from a few insect-y things in the bushes and trees and the river in the background. I love the sound of running water in the countryside. Then we came to this tree.
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Just look at how many roots are showing and how far they spread out.

And en route we passed Castle Cliff Rocks.

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Then a confirmation that we were on the right track

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It was a really warm day. Then we arrived at the entrance to Lud’s Church
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I know what you’re thinking but bear with me.

Immediately we got between the rocks the air was really chilled and as we turned the corner at the bottom there was a mist rising. It almost felt like you were walking into your fridge. Yep that’s right a really warm day and a chilly mist coming up from the ground. Bit spooky. Anyway here’s the view at the bottom. It was quite muddy but there was a wooden plank to walk along to avoid sinking into it.

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And a log which had loads of coins bashed into it. Not too sure what the idea of this was but believe from other sources that it is a very recent thing.

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So why is this narrow passageway (a few metres wide & 18 metres deep) between sheer-sided rocks called Lud’s Church? There are a few theories and suggestions. The very first mention of the name Lud occurs in the Bible in Genesis ch10 verse 22: the eldest son of Noah was Shem and his 4th son was called Lud. Maybe there’s an ecclesiastical root to the name.

It’s believed to have been a sacred place to early Pagans. Lud is actually a Celtic deity but not necessarily purely local to this area but again a possible religious connection.

Those of you who know something of the Arthurian legends may remember the story Sir Gawain & the Green Knight; some believe the Green Chapel in that story is Lud’s Church. The Green Knight’s outline is supposed to visible once you’re in the right place.

For those unfamiliar with the story it goes like this: one day the Green Knight comes to Camelot (supposedly on a green horse)and issues a challenge to the Knights of the Round Table; Sir Gawain, one of King Arthur’s knights, accepts that challenge; the challenge is that Sir G can strike the Green Knight if he (Sir G) will accept a return strike from GK a year and a day later; Sir G has his go and with one blow chops off GK’s head; job done? No, wait – GK then picks up his head and tells Sir G not to forget the deal. If you fancy finding out how the story proceeds and ends look it up; check out Lady Bertilak’s rather interesting role during the year & day. I wonder what you would have done in Sir G’s place.

There is also a tradition that Robin Hood used the place.

Perhaps more likely is the view that the Lollards (followers of the reformer John Wycliffe, 1320-84) are believed to have used the area for worship in the early 15th century when they were being persecuted by the authorities. A man called Walter de Ludank (or Lud-Auk) was captured there and it’s possible this is where the Lud name came from. Anyway whatever the origin it is just a very interesting place to visit.

We climbed out the other end of the passage and retraced our steps to the hostel. We set about preparing the evening meal in the communal kitchen often to the sound of Dido over the PA; one of the chefs is a fan and so am I. We were struck by the number of chopping boards.

Here they are
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Why so many colours? Because they’re all for different foods; and here’s the key to which one to use.

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We needed a wooden spoon for stirring our baked beans. We could see only one. How about this?

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I mean how big does your pan have to be to need that one? Anyway it did the job. (Wonder if LLM’s Ham House has one of these?)

Remember that isolation I mentioned at the start? If you’re into modern gizmos be aware Gradbach has no reception for modern technology (TV, PC, mobile) although one person said that if you walked for north for about 15 mins and climbed the hill just over the river you could get a few bars on the mobile! We played a few games of backgammon and retired to bed. Day 1 over, day 2 to follow soon.

A trip back in time to the workhouse

It’s Wednesday and it’s time for Rambler5319 to take over with his guest post again. Enjoy….

 

Perhaps you remember the post NaCl (from 1st Aug) about salt: its early production techniques and different uses. In it I said I would try and visit the Salt Museum at Northwich in Cheshire and last Friday that’s what I did. First thing to note is that, a couple of years ago, the place changed its name from the Salt Museum to the Weaver Hall Museum & Workhouse. I had intended to write up on the whole visit but there was quite a bit of interesting stuff on the workhouse so will do that this week; next week will cover the salt bit of the Museum and another site visit.

I arrived, in boiling sunshine, an hour or so after opening time and yet was still able to choose any spec in the completely empty car park!

Here’s the front entrance
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The Museum is housed in the refurbished original buildings of the old Workhouse, built as you can see in 1837, the year Queen Victoria came to the throne. The irony is that an original salt museum, built in 1887 by two local businessmen involved in the salt industry, collapsed due to salt mining subsidence! A replacement was built in 1909 and eventually the collection moved to Weaver Hall in 1981.

I went in and paid my entry fee; parking was free. The curator led me through to the start point – the video room; a film show for one as I was the only visitor so far. After the brief intro film, the first displays were all workhouse related. Of course the workhouse was never meant to be an easy life; it was tough in order to deter people from taking it as an easy option. No state handouts for people to become dependent upon. All inmates had to work. Children were educated in the belief that by so doing they would improve themselves and their prospects. Here’s a quote from a 1901 Poor Law Handbook:

“The care and training of children are matters which should receive the anxious attention of Guardians. Pauperism is in the blood, and there is no more effectual means of checking its hereditary nature than by doing all in our power to bring up our pauper children in such a manner as to make them God-fearing, useful and healthy members of society.”

Interesting that they saw ‘pauperism’ as an inherited (“in the blood”) condition.
Here’s a poster, from a London workhouse in 1902, showing one kind of job people were given to do – in this case, Oakum Picking:
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Note, from the write-up, the effects on people doing this work over a period of time. I’m sure they are what today we would call RSI (repetitive strain injury).
Next up was the laundry area and here are some examples of items you would expect to find there:
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You can see the two signs to encourage the workers to keep going: one says, “Hard Work Is Its Own Reward” and the other hanging on the right wall, “Cleanliness Is Next To Godliness”. Do you believe it?

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An interesting chart was this one below giving the daily & weekly meal allowances for each category of inmate: male, female, child, over 60s, nursing mothers & sick. Have a good look through and see what you reckon to those meals if you had to eat them.
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In some areas of the country H.M. Prisons allowed each prisoner 292oz (8.27kg) food per week; workhouse rations, in the same area, were set at 137oz (3.88kg). Meals were to be conducted in silence and sometimes without cutlery! However if you look at the allowances in the Northwich Workhouse some do seem quite generous. I was curious as to what they might equate to so did a quick measure on my kitchen scales of some of the food rations there.

For example, here’s a pic of the over 60s allowances which they could have in place of the breakfast gruel.
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Here’s the same sugar ration in a jam jar:
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1oz of tea per week equates to the tea in approx 14 tea bags (had to add a bit as theirs would have been loose tea); that means approx 2 cups of tea/day. 5oz butter looks reasonable but it has to last a week. The sugar pile on the plate is 6ins (15cms) diameter, or roughly half a jam jar, but as they were not getting any other sweet food maybe that just had to do. Apart from sugar in tea what else would they use it for?

Bread weight works out at roughly 1 slice (modern day) = 1oz (on my bread anyway); that means men got the equivalent of 12 slices/day, (adding breakfast & supper together) which seems quite a bit more than I’d consume. Most days men got 2lbs (908g) of potatoes.

Here’s my plate with 1lb (454g) so half a day’s ration:
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That’s 19 smallish potatoes so 38 for a day’s worth of 2lbs.

There were some other historical exhibits but not related to the workhouse or salt industry. Here’s one poster, advertising a concert at a local dance hall, in the early 1960s.
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You could have seen the Beatles play for an entrance fee of 10/- (or 50p/80 cents). Notice you also got The Cadillacs and The Psychos on the same bill. The following week Gene Vincent was due to appear with “HMV Recording Stars” The Outlaws; tickets were only 7/6 (37.5p/60 cents) for that one. And you could dance for four hours (7.45-11.45pm) – if you had the energy. Ah, those were the days, eh?
Then I came across this one. It was quite a high toilet from the ground to seat level. I wondered why? The note on the top warned the reader not to use it in the corridor (as if anyone would in a public place!). You may be able to read that.
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It also said to lift the lid to find out more info, so I did and here’s what it said inside:
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Imagine that – no flush. You just leave the waste, which dropped down a long pipe, to be washed away by water from the kitchen. It didn’t say if the toilet was likely to be located upstairs or downstairs; if upstairs imagine the length of the pipe down to the ground floor where your number twos would wait for someone in the kitchen to empty the sink. Hmm…..(I understand some people pooh-poohed the idea of including this exhibit….haha.. See what I did there?)

The next exhibit was interesting because of why it was made: “the model of the canal boat Wren was presented to Rev R.V. Barker, at the end of his ministry, by the local boatmen and the address was signed by the captains of the canal boats – Wasp, Beagle, Bunbury & Wren – in recognition of his ministry to them in Nantwich in 1879.
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After the museum I headed north of the town to sit by the canal and have my sandwiches.
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What a lovely peaceful spot and, a few minutes later, just the chugging sound of a westbound narrow boat passing by.
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Different pace of life on the canals! 4 mph speed limit though most go a bit slower to prevent damage to the banks caused by the waves the boat creates as it goes along. Soon it was home time and back to the hustle & bustle of city life. (Time also to remember that we today have much to be thankful for in state and government provision so that the poor don’t have to go to institutions like the old workhouse any more.) It had been a really interesting day out.

NaCl

Ok, a quick note from me before handing over the guest blogger. Does everyone remember the post about invisible art? Well, as I wandered around London yesterday enjoying my day off, I happened upon the exhibition itself! Just so you know it really does exist. It’s at the Southbank Centre in London, should you wish to pop along!

Remember that chemistry lesson? When you were wondering what use it would ever be I think you’re about to see why you should have paid attention.
Salt has a number of uses. First off, it can preserve: Egyptians used it when mummifying bodies and many cultures use it to preserve food.
There’s a fascinating book on the subject:

You may be surprised to learn that salt also appears, a number of times, in the Bible. In the Old Testament book called Numbers (the 4th book in the index of the Bible): “It is a covenant of salt forever, before the Lord with you and your descendants with you” (Num Ch18 v19). It also appears in the Book of 2 Chronicles (the 14th book in the index of the Bible): “….the Lord God of Israel gave the dominion over Israel to David forever, to him and his sons, by a covenant of salt” (2 Chr ch13 v5). Covenants are binding agreements between two parties so salt was clearly very important in these cases. In the New Testament there are a number of refs to salt. Remember the expression that we use when we say a person is “the salt of the earth” – it’s a direct quote of Jesus’s words recorded in Matthew’s Gospel Ch5 v13.
By the start of the 7th cent AD the city of Venice was using landfill to extend the mainland out to the islands and to produce salt it had begun using a system of “ponds” or pools which had seawater in. (NaCl – that is, sodium chloride – is what gives seawater its salinity). The system works like this beginning, quite naturally, with Pond 1. As the sun evaporates the water its salinity increases. Then it is moved (or pumped) into Pond 2 where more evaporation takes place and Pond 1 is re-filled with a fresh supply of seawater to start the process off again. Once Pond 2 has increased salinity due to the evaporation by the sun acting on it then it’s moved into Pond 3. Ponds 2 and then 1 move their water up and Pond 1 is re-filled. And so the process goes on until the salt begins to solidify and drops to the bottom of the last pond where it can be scraped out. This process saved the problem of just having single ponds which you had to wait for to go through the whole evaporation cycle over and over which could take up to a year from start to finish.
Did you know that Roman soldiers were at times paid in salt? This is where we get the English expression that someone is “worth their salt”. Our word “salary” is derived from the Latin salarium (not solarium!) which, it is believed, referred to money given to soldiers to buy salt. The Romans often located their settlements in areas with easy access to salt because it could be used, as they saw it, to further the development of civilisation and, of course, primarily their empire.
World production of salt is around 300 million tons per year. My little salt cellar holds approx 50gms.

Now, go on admit it, you’re wondering – how many times could I fill my little salt cellar from the world’s production for just one year. Ok, well here goes – 1 kg would supply me with 20 refills (20 x 50g); so 1 tonne would give me 20,000 refills; 1 million tonnes would give me 20,000,000,000 (20 thousand million =20 billion as per the OED); so finally 300 million tonnes would give me 300 x 20 billion = 6,000 billion refills or 6 Trillion refills! And just one 50gm amount lasts me ages & ages. (For comparison purposes think of it this way – there are 31.6 million seconds in a year so if I consumed what would definitely be a fatal – 50 gms/sec – it would take erm…..200,000 years to use up just one year’s production!! Numbers are just too big – blowing a gasket here! Moving on……..
In the county of Cheshire in the UK there is a small town called Northwich (pop. 20,000 as of 2001). Dated pottery fragments found there suggest the town has been associated with salt since at least 600BC and it became more important, as a source of salt, during Roman times. The town’s coat of arms has the Latin motto Sal Est Vita which means salt is life.
There is also an association with salt found in the etymology of the town’s name Northwich. The “-wich” part of the town name itself is believed to derive from the Norse “wic” (or wych) meaning bay and is associated with the traditional way of obtaining salt by evaporating sea water (Wikipedia). The “wich” (or wych) suffix occurs in other towns in the county – Middlewich, Nantwich and Leftwich. In fact anywhere in the UK with a “-wich” ending in its name means that usually there will have been a connection to salt at some point in its history. Therefore a place for making salt became a wych-house; and Northwich was so named because, you’ve guessed it, it’s the most northerly of the “-wich” towns in Cheshire.
To get salt out of the ground it has to be mined. Once the traditional (c.16th cent) method of sending men into a hole in the ground, to manually dig it out became unviable in terms of cost, producers moved to what is called “solution mining” (c.17th cent) where fresh water is pumped down a well to dissolve the salt. The salted water (brine) is then pumped back to the surface where the salt can then be extracted. The difficulty with this method is that as more salt is dissolved & drawn out, it leaves holes underground where the solid salt used to be; then land above can easily subside and this is what happened in the Cheshire area. The ignorance or deliberate avoidance of the consequences of their actions back in the 19th cent led to the salt extractors causing many areas to subside and holes to form at ground level. These holes then would fill with rain water adding to the whole problem. Indeed, in Northwich itself, there are horrendous examples of buildings leaning and damage to shops, private houses etc.
The social and practical impact of salt extraction in this area is highlighted by displays & storyboards in the SALT Museum located in the refurbished workhouse (built c.1838) in Northwich. I hope to visit it some time before the autumn and will report back.
In more modern times (1972) the group Steeleye Span released an album called Below The Salt. You, like me, may have wondered where they got the title from. In the Middle Ages, when families & their servants ate together, the salt would be placed in the middle of the table separating the two. The servants were then referred to as sitting “below the salt”. Incidentally the album contains an acapella track sung entirely in Latin which got to No.14 in the UK charts – Gaudete. I’m sure you remember that famous opening chorus: “Gaudete, gaudete, Christus est natus ex Maria virgine, Gaudete” (Translation: Rejoice, rejoice, Christ is born of the Virgin Mary, Rejoice).
You must have heard people talk of someone “rubbing salt into the wound” as a way of saying a bad situation has been made worse by whatever that person did. However did you know that the origin of it goes back to days of sail and punishment by flogging on board ship. Once the skin was broken and bleeding, salt was rubbed in to prevent infection (and therefore ultimately the loss of a crewman) but it was a very painful experience for the person concerned.
There are a number of “sal” expressions and derivations in the English language. Let’s look at a few:
1. You’ve probably heard of the compound sal volatile (pronounced sal volatilly) which is the Latin name for what we refer to as smelling salts. You know the scene in a play or film when someone faints and the salts are used to “bring them round”. Workplaces used to have some in their first aid boxes for emergencies and I’ve seen them used a couple of times. They act by releasing a small amount of ammonia gas which produces a reflex in the nose causes the person to inhale.
2. Do you know the expression people use when they don’t believe something is true – they say you have to take what another person says with a “pinch” or “grain” of salt. (The latin is cum grano salis.) The expression dates back to Roman times (with Pliny the Elder) and refers to one of the ingredients of an “antidote to poison”. Threats of poison in food were therefore said to be taken “with a grain of salt”: the inference being that the effects would be less serious if the salt was taken. The lessening effect, in modern times, has been transferred but inverted to mean a lessening of the truthfulness of a particular statement.
3. The word “salad” means salted dish and “salami” is a sausage which contains a lot of salt.
4. Remember those films again with safecrackers blowing up the safe to get the money. They were called Petremen (pronounced Peter-men) referring to the substance they used which was actually called “saltpetre” or potassium nitrate – a component of gunpowder. Originally saltpetre meant salt of rock – the “petre” bit coming from one of the Latin cases of petra meaning rock. However did you know that it can also be used as a preservative. I’m not joking, if you check Amazon you will find it on sale (4oz for £2.25 from one supplier) for curing beef.
5. A sailor can be referred to as an “old salt” – the reason coming from the preservative qualities of salt for their meat & fish which were soaked in brine.
If you get a chance have a read of Mark Kurlansky’s book (in the pic at the beginning). I really enjoyed it and it’s got to be THE authority on the subject and kept me interested from start to finish. (It’s 452 pages with a 12 page Bibliography!). Thanks to him for some of the historical stuff used in this article.
So you see salt can be a very interesting substance and far more important than you thought. Hope this has not been too much of an assault on your brain and senses (haha).