Coat of Arms of the East Riding
Coat of Arms of the East Riding

This is the speech of a man in his early seventies who was born and raised in the East Riding and who has lived in the same village the whole of his life. Educated at the local village school, and later at boarding school, he has worked in agriculture since finishing his education. The following is an extact from the informant's account of a childhood journey to school without the benefits (or restrictions) of parental supervision. A slaphole is a hole in the road full of rain water. To hear the spoken version, click here.

… right through these slapholes with my new boots on. I smashed all the ice and … I got to the end of the gate
there and … I found out I was wet through … and so ... I didn't go to school. I turned round and I went back …
and I went back up home and … my mother was stood in the wash-house with ... with her hands in … in the
washing tub you know, the big old wooden thing with the scrubbing board, going like this, and … she just looked
round and said what are you doing here. I says my feet are wet. … Oh … what have you been doing …
breaking them slapholes in the water. I think. I said aye. She took my hand and she took me though into the
kitchen. She lifted me up, put me on the table and … she off with my boots and she stuck some newspaper in
and put them against the fire, because there was a big old kitchen range in there then … took my socks off and
… dried them off, and put some clean socks on, and got my boots and put them back on again. She got hold of
my hand and she fair trailed me down that road … all the way down here …missed the slapholes … opened the
school door and shoved me in … and that were it