A STORYTELLER is serving up his very own slice of Lancashire with fascinating tales of life in “owd” Burnley.
Mervyn Hadfield, of Printers Fold, has spent 50 years penning poems about the places where he grew up – written in the native tongue of the town.
But now the 69-year-old author and dialect poet is hoping to bring his words to life by dedicating them to CD.
His work is a mixture of stories and monologues with titles like “Farewell to the Miller’s Arms”, “Th’owd Brickhouses” and “The Long Drop” – which talk of places and people around Burnley.
He said: “It focuses on the town and its culture and the people who really make the place what it is. The stories are based on the characters I have met. There’s a lot of humour in my work and a lot of it is grim humour. I like to see history warts and all.”
One of his tales “Streetwise” is a humorous account of an illiterate policeman dealing with a brewery horse which drops dead in a street he cannot spell.
Another, “Dirty Dolly”, is a childhood account of a drab and dingy shop run by the fearsome figure of Dolly Dugdale who was renowned by youngsters in the area.
Since he began writing Mervyn has been touring Lancashire performing his dialect poems for local interest groups, clubs and even on the radio.
But it is only recently he considered putting them on CD so people could enjoy his work the way it was intended.
He said: “Because I write in the vernacular they are not that easy to read. So people began asking me if I made recordings and I finally put them all on a CD.
“When we were brought up things like Stanley Holloway’s ‘Albert and the Lion’ were popular. We were from an era where you would learn them off by heart. It was a real art form.”
“My Slice of Lancashire” by Mervyn Hadfield is available to buy on ebay for £5 plus postage costs of £1.50 or by contacting him on 01282 779988
n Watch a video of Mervyn performing a poem on the Burnley Express website.