God’s Country?

August 1st saw the celebration of God’s Country in “Yorkshire Day”. I’ve lived in Huddersfield for almost two years, and for the majority of that time I have done little else other than moan about how much I hate living here.

Having been born and bred on the outskirts Liverpool, I am extremely proud of my heritage; a city home to two fantastic football clubs, one of the UK’s best night outs and arguably the greatest rock bands of all time.

Moving from there to a quiet little town that doesn’t seem to have much going on was something I really struggled with, and why anybody would celebrate the entire county was beyond me. However I’ve recently come to know and love Yorkshire for what it is, and I’ve gone from going home every weekend, to staying here over summer. Here are my reasons why I both love and hate where I live:

1 – The Hills
Moving here was the biggest wake-up call to how notably unfit I am. I still get out of breath walking through the town centre on my weekly shop. Huddersfield is the only place I have ever been to in which two separate entrances to the same shop are on different floors purely due to the terrain of the ground underneath. I have however started to embrace the hills of Yorkshire, not only are they probably toning up my thighs (I wish!), but it’s only until you get to the top of these peaks that you realise just how stunning your surroundings are. If you haven’t been to Castle Hill, I urge you to as it’s one of the best and most beautiful views of the town.

2 – The Weather
I have been to the rainforest and saw less rain than I have here. It’s every type of rain in existence too, from that fine rain that still manages to soak you through to your skin, to the fat rain that bounces off the ground causing rivers and streams were pavements once where. And umbrellas become futile in the Yorkshire gales, I’ve lost count of how many I’ve sacrificed to the wind. Despite this, the fact the weather is a bit crap 80% of the time; it makes you really appreciate the good weather days. We’ve been lucky with the sun making a regular appearance recently and it’s brought out the best in the town. Greenhead Park is always buzzing, all the beer gardens are full to the brim and everybody just seems to be happy to be under the sun.

3 – T’ Lingo
I cannot count the amount of times I have had an argument with someone in Yorkshire over what they call a bread roll (where I am from a “teacake” is sweet with currents in, okay?). I understand that different regions have different phrases and words for certain things, but the language of the white rose is really something I cannot grasp. The absolutely worst thing about moving somewhere with a completely different dialect and what seems to be a completely different language to your own is that you begin to pick it up. The amount of times my friends and family from home have ripped into me for calling everyone “pal” and not pronouncing my T’s properly is ridiculous. But the truth is that the Yorkshire accent is charming, friendly, non-threatening and infectious, and something I have grown to love about living here.

4 – The Community
Moving anywhere new is pretty terrifying. The combination of not knowing anybody and not knowing where anything is can be daunting to anyone. But I’ve found that the stereotype of people up North being friendlier is not that far from the truth. Since moving to Huddersfield I’ve spoken to many friendly Yorkshire strangers and it’s comforting and reassuring that there are people out there that just enjoy an innocent natter. It doesn’t take very much time of living here before you get to know the locals (mainly DJ Smile) and before long the strange environment you’ve moved to starts to feel more like home.

5 – The Nights Out
I was dreading moving from the famous nightlife of Liverpool to the three or four clubs that Huddersfield had to offer. In all honesty; I love the Huddersfield nightlife for what it is. Whatever sort of night out you want Huddersfield has a lot to offer, if a few quiet drinks is what you fancy, there are plenty of bars such as Herbert’s and Northern Taps which cater to that, if you’re after a few games of pool and a few pints, Parish and Warehouse have you covered, and if you want to get your glad rags on and paint the town red, Revs, Tokyo’s and Camel are at your beck and call, if live music is what you’re after, Bar 1:22, Parish and Zephyr play host to some amazing gigs. For such a small town, Huddersfield is extremely versatile and actually really cheap. Yorkshire is your oyster.

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