Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Dudley - down and out in yam-yam land*

We spent last weekend at my Mom & Dad's house in Dudley. The main reason for going down was obviously to see them and for them to see their grand-daughter. But we also had the delights of our dentist appointment.
(We're lucky that he kept us on as NHS patients - well worth the trip down!)

But unlike our usual visits to Dudley, this time we had a couple of hours to wander around the place.
God almighty it's a culture shock.

Dudley is the 19th largest settlement in the UK (York, by way of comparison is 40th)
It's home to 194919 people.
And from my birth to the age of 18 it was my home as well.

But it's changed beyond recognition from the town I grew up in. The other big thing we noticed about Dudley this time around was a general feeling that the whole place was on such a downward spiral towards economic depravity and decay.
In Pocklington the people are lovely, generally nice and pretty much intelligent and decent folks.
Dudley, not so much. The place seems like it's hemorrhaging IQ by the day.

shopping in Dudley

I bought my first sleeping bag from here, many years ago

Everywhere we went it seemed we were surrounded by crying children and screaming adults. The default parenting option seems to be shouting as loud as possible, preferably whilst dragging your child along behind you screaming and crying at the top of their lungs. Without missing a beat the parent screams back at their child, preferably without turning round to address them. The screams are then shared with everyone in the immediate area.

We have to go there every so often - some contractual thing for the grandparents and their will I think. But I don't think we'll be doing the grand tour again any time soon.

Dudley's once thriving marketplace.

And the only thing that does seem to be increasing - waistlines.
Lunch for a £1.
Heart attacks for free.

* In case you were wondering. Yam-Yam is a derogatory reference to Dudley & Black Country people. It comes from the dialect where "I am" becomes "I yam" hence yam yam.

No comments:

Post a Comment