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Ashton   Views: 2688
The Colliers Arms aka the Dull Pick on Warrington road A in M.   Comments: 46
Photo: . Ozymandias .   Item #: 29703  
The Colliers Arms aka the Dull Pick on Warrington road A in M.

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  Taken in about 1972, the Dull Pick was situated between the Bay Horse hotel and Warrington Commercials Foden agency. ( it could possibly have been Comberhill motors at that point, I'm not entirely certain. Either way, the site originally belonged to Jack Case evidently. It is now the site of Robinson's saddlery ). The exact spot where the Dull Pick stood, now forms part of the car park of the Bay Horse hotel. I'm not sure precisely when the pub was demolished.  

 [<< Back] 46 user comment(s) below:-  [Leave a comment]

Comments by Philip Gormley., 5th September 2017  
My word Ozy, you do look trim - wish I could have had a stomach like that.

Comments by Poet, 5th September 2017  
Nice to see Almonds Ale advertised. JB Almond lived at the now defunct Beeches Restaurant on School Lane. His phone number was Standish 1.

Comments by Veronica, 5th September 2017  
Never mind the pub.....dig them bell bottoms!

Comments by . Ozymandias ., 6th September 2017  
Tommy Disley had this place in the late 60's to early 70's. He also had a fruit and veg shop opposite the No 1 Labour club in Haydock. This bloke was as mad as a wasp, but a great guy nonetheless. The next tenants were Jimmy Goulding and his beautiful wife Alice. Alice originated from Gillingham in Kent. I'm not altogether certain where Jimmy came from, but planet Zog is a strong contender. I recall the police raided the place in the early hours of the morning one time and among the charges read out in court, there was one that stated...., " the landlord was found to be in an inebriated state, dancing on one of the tables with his cap set at a jaunty angle ". No, seriously...I really couldn't make this up if I sat awake half of the night. The next landlord was Stan Adamson and his wife, who's name was Alice also. They came from Landgate. There'll be a picture of Alice appearing shortly. The very last tenants, prior to demolition of the building were Stan's daughter Christine and her husband Billy Gough. ( pronounced Goff ) probably one of the nicest couples that I've ever had the good fortune to come into contact with.... I reckon that's enough for now as I'm experiencing a bit of a Mary Hopkin moment.
I've set down this information as best as I can recollect in order to provide an historical record for subsequent generations, nothing more.

Comments by Maureen, 6th September 2017  
That's Jim Davidson..lol

Comments by Philip Gormley., 6th September 2017  
Ozy: A jaunty angle ... shades of Master Sankey's posture exhibited on your recent 'Skits' photo. I love a little bit of swagger.

Comments by DTease, 6th September 2017  
I still have a stomach like that but I protect it now with a thick layer of fat.

Comments by Albert., 6th September 2017  
Is the pretty lady your better half Ozy?.

Comments by whups, 6th September 2017  
i see billy & his wife regular in ashton on saturdays.

Comments by Veronica, 6th September 2017  
Me too Dtease! I'm still doing 2 press ups and side stretches in order to find my 24 inch waist it's in there somewhere! It's been missing quite a while!

Comments by bert, 6th September 2017  
hi ozy that's how I remember you from years past.i agree with you about billy and Christine and her parents.they all lived at downall green when we were kids.

Comments by GW., 6th September 2017  
Dtease.I keep my catwalk figure by playing[as mentioned in the previous post] "dominoes". And Ozy, did you ever model for Levi's?

Comments by . Ozymandias ., 6th September 2017  
No I've never done modelling work of any kind GW, yet oddly enough, it's been reported to me on several occasions that striking likenesses of my facial features have often been seen, usually high up on church roofs, adorning the gutters.

Comments by Veronica, 6th September 2017  
I think the clue lies in the 'sanctuary' on Parbold Hill what with all that cycling up-hill and then the lawn mowing and mending the roof gutters!

Comments by Ray, 7th September 2017  
I thought it was Fabio Capello, the former England football
team manager, photo taken about 1975,with Mrs Capello.

Comments by Poet, 7th September 2017  
I thought a resemblance to 'Lofty' from EastEnders.

Comments by . Ozymandias ., 7th September 2017  
Just to give a brief description of the ' Dull Pick ', the gents' toilets were situated outside in the back yard, and consisted of a couple of vertical stone slabs which were completely open to the elements, allowing the male clientele to watch the planes coming in to land at Ringway as the snow settled on their shoulders. The ladies were slightly better provided for however, with a kind of brick built tardis, also out in the back yard, which came complete with cobwebs, and arachnids the size of dinner plates. ( or so I'm informed ).
The back room of the pub had the proboscis of a sawfish hanging over the bar, but I never learned of its origin. This room would have been approximately the size of one of the cells in Wormwood Scrubs and contained a pool table and a jukebox.
Being spatially restricted, the pool players had sawn about 18 inches off one of the cues to avoid occasioning terminal damage to the Wurlitzer.
I think the juke box took a bob for three plays and among the eclectic selection of music was Franz Von Suppe's ' Poet and Peasant Overture ' in two parts. This we played constantly, taking turns to do the ' conducting '. This record may quite well have been single handedly responsible for keeping the entire enterprise in the black for a period.
There was a staircase with a door leading upstairs from the back room, but no one ever ventured up there. It was rumoured to be like the room in that scary film, with the little girl talking to the static on the telly. That room with the whirling vortex at one end that transports anyone who ventures close to it, directly to Hades. We gave that one a wide berth.
Moving down the narrow lobby now, into the front room, ( which we rarely did ). This room was probably larger by a few square feet than the back room, but boasted what was possibly the smallest bar in the entire Kingdom.
From memory, it was about ten inches wide with a sliding glass window through which it was possible to order a pint. The glass in the window had been broken for years, leaving only the jagged edges remaining and rendering the sliding facility obsolete at a stroke. You'd just get your pint through the broken glass.
I remember the brewery, which was Burtonwood incidentally, despite the Almonds sign on the windows, sending a team of decorators out to do a makeover on the place.
They spent a few days splashing a bit of paint about then left as abruptly as they had arrived. Instead of replacing the broken glass in the sliding window, they'd merely painted along the edges of it's broken contours. I believe it was this final act of callous indifference on the part of the brewery that robbed Tommy Disley of the will to live, and he threw the towel in shortly afterwards. He left, a broken man, and returned to Haydock to focus his attention on his fruit and veg empire.
We carried on patronising the place nonetheless, and revelled in the constantly changing kaleidoscope of offbeat characters that stepped forward to take up the challenge of running ' The Dull 'un ', but it was never really the same again without Tommy. R.I.P.

Comments by Philip Gormley., 7th September 2017  
Living proof of a historic record who also provides some details of a time well-spent ('doughty, in such narrow confines') It was a pity about the Pristidae Bonaparte, Ozy, but it probably saw it coming. Thanks.

Comments by DTease, 7th September 2017  
Ozymandias, your story brought a tear to my eye and an aching to my heart.

Comments by . Ozymandias ., 7th September 2017  
Gone to graveyards every one DTease unfortunately, apart from The Bellingham that is.....although that one's currently on life support as well.....I do hope that last comment isn't libellous.....But at the end of the day, it isn't so much about the pub as the clientele, wouldn't you agree?

Comments by John G, 7th September 2017  
Ozymandias: That's very true it's all about characters, and of course the character of the pub. Many times I have gone home at the end of the night/morning aching with laughter and wiping tears from my eyes.Iam sure you and many others have the same experience, the new trendier pubs of all kinds of ale and good pub food but no character.

Comments by Carolaen, 7th September 2017  
Ozy/Dtease - Unfortunately good pubs seem to have disappeared everywhere including down here in Somerset where we have been living for over 20 years. where they are still going (and there are 2 near me including one from the 1700s that have been vacant for nearly 2 years and another which seems to survive from the same group of 7 old men - it used to be more but they pop off regularly.) they seem to have turned into restaurants, or out and out boozers full of tattooed, shaven headed 30 year olds(and thats just the women) who alway stand in groups at the bar, or are themed "hostelries"

Anyway to get back to a Wigan specific theme -some readers may be aware of a great book called "Dotter of Her Father's Eyes" by Mary (who wrote it) and Bryan (who illustrated it) Talbot which won the 2012 Costa biography prize, and was the first "Graphic Book" to win a major UK book prize. Although they now live in the North East Bryan and Mary grew up in Wigan and the book is a wonderful evocation of growing up in 1950s, 60s and early 70s Wigan. Bryan is a world famous graphic artist and his illustrations capture those times wonderfully.In particularly there are some great memories from the Market Hotel which holds a special place in many Wiganers hearts. One of the great things about it was you got a whole cross section from long haired hippy WGS types to ex miners all playing dominoes and socialising - something I hardly ever see happening in most pubs these days.

This thread reminded me of the Market and please have a look at the above book if you can. Even if you don't like the story its a great reminiscence for those who lived through those times and there some great drawings of Wigan at the time - Mesnes Park etc where they courted. I will declare an interest here, I was a schoolmate of Bryan and was actually at the party in 1970 where they met up and they are still as happily married as ever.

Comments by DTease, 7th September 2017  
It seems Ozy, that the demise of the local Pub has resulted in the demise of the local "Characters" that were the heart and soul of them. There was the "Font of all Knowledge" ie the old chap in the flat cap with his pipe who would sit in his favourite place by the fire and say nowt, but whenever there was a dispute about anything he was the one who everyone turned to for a final decision.
There was "The Latchlifter" the guy who came in every night with just enough money to buy his first pint but had such a talent for making you laugh that you would buy him ale all night just to keep him there.
There was "The Young Fella" who always tried to cross wits with the ex Pitmen but never won and then there were the "Lads" just starting out and learning what kind of behaviour was acceptable and what wasn't.
They would all meet up in the Vault of the local Pub and enjoy a few drinks and each other's company and cause no harm to anyone (well rarely).
Sadly, these days, the idea seems to be to get as drunk as you can as quickly as you can. No one seems to enjoy a night out like they used to.

Comments by John59, 8th September 2017  
Do you mind if I post this photo and your reminiss remenes err memories on another site (fb) Ozymandias ? with credit of couse

Comments by John59, 8th September 2017  
for those who haven't seen it here's a photo of the pub in all it's glory (or should that be gory) detail of later life http://www.wiganworld.co.uk/stuff/soldpub.php?pic=dw10b.jpg&opt=pubs&w=899&h=598

Comments by . Ozymandias ., 8th September 2017  
On your recommendation Carolaen, I've ordered the book from Amazon. It will arrive in about a week's time evidently. On completion of the book, I will pass it on to Philip Gormley for his perusal and will then get back to you somehow with my considered verdict, which in all probability will consist of a rating of between 1 and 10. I have to leave now, as coincidentally, I just happen to be heading down to your neck of the woods today....be afraid!.... be very afraid!

Regards Ozy.

Comments by TD,., 8th September 2017  
Splendid insight and photo, including the half full pot on the window sill Ozymandias. "Fill with mingled cream and amber
I will drain that glass again.
Such hilarious visions clamber
Through the chamber of my brain -
Quaintest thoughts - queerest fancies
Come to life and fade away;
What care I how time advances?
I am drinking ale today". - Edgar A Poe - Lines of Ale.

Comments by Veronica, 8th September 2017  
Very interesting thread makes a nice change from anything on wheels! Not that I begrudge you those memories-but the tales of the local pub are nearer to 'home' so to speak. I'm sure we all remember many of the older characters who frequented the pubs. The majority of them have passed on by now - their like will never be seen again. They were usually a tough old breed who lived through tough times and that's what made them into the interesting characters they were. I can't imagine them in any of the pubs today -what's left of them! Well that's my opinion anyway.

Comments by . Ozymandias ., 8th September 2017  
Feel free to use the photograph and any part of my contribution to this thread as you wish John. Dare I ask the name of the site where you intend to use it? Please don't feel under any obligation to answer this question however.

Regards. Ozy.

Comments by Poet, 8th September 2017  
Nice and optimistic TD. Half full pot is right.

Comments by Philip Gormley., 8th September 2017  
Yes Veronica, characterisation and a smattering of homeliness were two of the essentials needed to make a pub flourish, and by extension help to maintain the true meaning of rustic cordiality.
The elderly pipe-puffing gent who sat quietly beside the pub's coal fire was seen as a whetstone for others to sharpen their imaginations on, and gave added impetus to the close-call decision-making processes that seemed to abound in tap-rooms, and snugs. I have a smashing set of cig' cards ... no, it would better if I gave cartophilly a 'miss', here.
Talk of the pipe-puffing gent, though, has spurred me on to discover the true identity of this here DTease fellow, he whom collects characters and situations with vim, vigour and down to earth appeal?
I know of only one person who had these god-given attributes: Charles Dickens. But as the great man no longer walks among us, I feel confident that DTease is the spectre of the said scribe.
Come clean, DTease, an adoring readership awaits your latest.

Comments by DTease, 8th September 2017  
Over the past couple of years I have read and enjoyed most of Ozymandia's comments but his description of 'The Dull Pick' must rank as one, if not the best.
If the true test of a writer is his ability to "Paint a picture with words" then 'Ozy' must pass with flying colours.
Let's hope there is more to come.

Comments by Albert., 8th September 2017  
Such a host of good pubs, and clubs, and dance halls in the days of yore. Now all have more or les bit the dust,to be replaced by discos, music festivals, and such like. I suppose as time advances, entertainment takes on a differing mode, as has happened in relation to the type, and style of music, that was prevalent in the fifties, and sixties. Good luck to the young people of today. May they continue to enjoy the type, and style of entertainment that suits them, in a carefree society.

Comments by Veronica, 8th September 2017  
I agree Philip/Dtease-makes me wonder what else is stored away in the story teller's minds of Wigan World! Not to mention the humorous cracks which leave me laughing out loud! (I will just mention 'gargoyles' from this thread and 'Sanctuary'!). You just have to have a laugh sometimes.....! Life shouldn't be too serious.

Comments by DTease, 8th September 2017  
Philip, the Missis reckons I am more of a 'What the Dickens' than a 'Charlie Dickens'.

Comments by Julie, 8th September 2017  
DTease. I also greatly enjoyed Ozy's comment , but clearly not as much as you.
Sorry to put gung ? Into the engine oil , which I never do with intention. Ozy will naturally read Phillips comment and his sub conscious, without form or malice, will counter this higher form of elaboration of the written word. Many on here will the welcome and appreciate the warm and friendly non existent dual of these two WW gifted writers.
I , unfortunately will not , and will simply admire then blow a sigh, of a gift lost.
I will walk away like Del Boy , Rodney and Uncle Albert, towards the rising /falling sunset , with the hope that the simplified word and sentence , that is aimed / written specifically to reach ALL, not a chosen few , will not only shows its face out of the pea-soup fog , but seep into Phillip , Ozy and others brains , as they sleep , to awake to a realisation of the talent they already hold. Mine is a nonsense , theirs is a gift. Don't confine your words to a single plant pot... Exclusivity, is a dodgy clutch, in the womb of creativity. As always , I wish no offence and express only my own views.

Comments by Philip Gormley., 8th September 2017  
DTease/Chas: A fine appraisal of Ozy's artistic ability, in your latest. Hope you don't mind the pseudonym attachment. It's the continuation and discontinuation (does that make sense, or have I written myself into a corner?) of the mirth shown in the final part of my previous post.
Hope there's more of your posts to come.

Comments by Veronica, 8th September 2017  
Julie you cannot please everybody. Just because the minority do not appreciate the wit and wisdom of some does not mean that those who do should be deprived. They are making use of the English language that you can fully understand and appreciate -you are English after all. I can't see a problem. They are speaking in the language of your birth and not in Russian. All very entertaining after all as I'm sure many would agree- ignore the posts if you do not like to read them- I know I do -especially when it's regarding lorries or wagons! They write as they speak - interestingly.

Comments by Jack, 8th September 2017  
Julie , Why not leave the forum instead? It would be easier for you and all..

Comments by Ellen, 8th September 2017  
Veronica, I totally agree with your last statement. I know none of the people referred to by Ozy, nor do I know the pub described. (I did not frequent pubs until I had gone on to another city!) However, I enjoyed reading about them. It was very nostalgic for me some fifty years on, and brought back many memories, all of them happy. Thank you Ozy and friends!

Comments by Philip Gormley., 9th September 2017  
Ozy: I've just watched the 1979 TV programme Home Ground - Wigan, on YouTube. It shows the hydraulic pit props in action on home soil, and others being prepared for shipment to China. Maybe some of the Gullick Dobson lads had quenched their thirst in The Dull Pick, as well.
The thirty minute film also shows the town's orange & white double-decker buses in skeleton form, and then on to their full finery. Maybe Director & General Manager Mr David Cherry had quenched his thirst in The Dull Pick.
The film also includes The Wigan Schools Brass Band in full flow at Mesnes Park. Maybe the players had ... heaven forbid.

Comments by . Ozymandias ., 9th September 2017  
I doubt that many of Gullick Dobson's employees would have ever even heard of the Dull 'un to be honest Philip, let alone supped there. To be fair though, although the place was ' of its time ', and suited my requirements admirably, it has to be said that it wasn't to everyone's taste, and as I constantly, and quite happily find myself forming part of the minority, this is no doubt one of the principal reasons that it now forms part of the Bay Horse car park.
Moving on, I have to say that I share your curiosity regarding the identity of certain contributors on here. There's one gent for instance, I'm talking about the character that's reputed to go to bed wearing his ' Corker ' helmet,....there's him, and then there's ,......let's call him ' the third man ', or Wigan World's answer to Lobby Lud, as I prefer to think of him. There's rarely a dull moment when yon two are around.
Can you imagine spending an evening in the taproom with those lads? ........You could televise the event and sell the rights worldwide...Now there's an idea. It would likely contain more entertainment value than Big Brother anyroad.
But then, watching two flies crawling up the wallpaper is infinitely more entertaining than watching that garbage.
That said, I have to constantly remind myself that I'm in the minority,...and bloody well glad to be an' all, if you'll pardon my use of language that can be readily understood by all.
I'll give you my considered opinion on The Great Western Railway the next time we speak Philip.
Regards. Ozy.

Comments by Philip Gormley., 9th September 2017  
Thanks for your kind reply Ozy.
Curiosity indeed ... I'm left wondering why yon mon still hasn't removed his dirty plaster, as a blast of fresh air would surely speed-up the healing process for him, and also the opportunity to 'smell the roses'.
The Corker ... crikey! About two months ago, I tried to chase-up the photo that shows me wearing my brother's Corker Jet, on a storm-lashed Shap. I don't have much hope of it re-surfacing, but should it happen to do so then I would certainly email it to you - it's comical. Take care.

Comments by Dougie, 11th September 2017  
All I can say good thread about the Dull Pick thanks

LOL, How do you think two Dart and Domino teams got in the place

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