This is what it's all about. It's fuckin poetry.
I don't know how it came about,it wasn't really planned but I ended up down the Barge pub on a Friday night on Halloween. It was 1980 and I had just turned twenty. I had arranged to meet a few friends there, who were all bikers to discuss doing something different on this special night.
Spanner was sitting with Chris Mudd and Andy Cameron just by the Jukebox drinking bitter shandy.I was at the bar with Mike and Loopy getting a pint, when suddenly the doors opened and in entered John and Brian Blackburn. They came straight over and Brian put the hammer on for a pint, and having bought him one I felt obliged to buy his brother one. We joined the rest of the group over by the jukebox and I opened the conversation by saying " It's halloween let's go for a ride up to Pendle hill" john said "where's that" and I explained it was up by Preston. John,Brian,Loppy and Mike were all up for it, not dead keen but willing to go. Spanner and Andy Cameron didn't really want to go and Chris Mudd wasn't interested at all. Chris said "why drive 50 miles for a pint when you can get one here". I tried to explain to him that you can get a pint in the Barge every night for the next twelve months but halloween is only one night of the year. He was moaning about the cost of the amount juice to get there and all sorts of things but I think he just wanted to put a damper on the whole idea. He also didn't want to loose his two drinking buddies - Spanner and Andy. In the time It took to drink our first pint everyone was in favour. Spanner and Andy Cameron were finally persuaded by brian's constant nagging and the fact that Andy wouldn't be paying for any fuel as he was on the back of Spanner's bike. We left Chris Mudd happily sitting on his own, drinking his second pint at about 6.30pm, the unadventurous, miserable bastard. What girls ever saw in his geezer I could never understand. He was twenty going on fifty and most boring person I had ever known.
It was pitch black not long after setting off and the weather was typical of october - windy and wet. The group numbered seven Brian,John,Myself,Mike,Spanner,Andy and Loopy. The bikes were three Suzuki two fifty's and one yamaha two fifty.The route had to be by A roads because Brian and Loppy had not passed their bike test. We travelled from Runcorn to Warrington then picked up the A59 at Warrrington, which went through Wigan and would eventually put us just outside preston. The problem was that we kept getting lost and right in the middle of Wigan, we all drove up a one-way street the wrong way. A very cheerfull police man stopped us and pointed us in the right direction as we were going off course. We also got lost again somewhere outside chorley. When you get outside Preston the road is pretty straight forward and Clitheroe is well sign posted.
At about 8.00pm we had arrived in Clitheroe town center and found a pub called the King's Head. It's was strange because all the pubs in the area seemed to have gone halloween mad. Back at the Barge there was no decorations, no fancy dress and you wouldn't have known it any different from any other day of the year and same could have been said for every pub in Runcorn. Step into lancashire and it's a whole different ball game especially Pendle, It's halloween for real.The King's Head was no different to any other pub in the town,lavishly decorated in the halloween colors of orange and black with spiders, bats and witches everywhere. Even the bar staff in the pubs had customes on.
when we left the pub we went to the chip shop across the road and had some chips. The streets ouzed hoards of young children dressed up and making a din. After scoffing the chips, we left Clitheroe behind and started up the winding road to Pendle hill. Just before you get to the 'Nick of Pendle' there's a big white pub called the Well's Spring Inn, where we called in for another pint. This was the 1980's just, and drink driving laws were not applied with such a vigorous mannner as they are today. I had a rule of thumb back then, that it was alright to drink up to four pints. Anymore than that and my driving got a bit suspicious. The Well's Spring Inn was all decorated like the rest of the pubs but I knew it would be because I had been there the previous halloween with Mike and Ste Rogers. The barmaids were all dressed in saucy witchy customs with low cut neck lines revealing lots of cleavage.Brian tried to chat a couple of them up but got the knock back every time. Back in the eighties last orders was eleven o'clock and at 11.15pm we were outside and starting the bikes up ready to head home.
I don't know why but about three miles outside Clitheroe Brian and John decide that there going to find somewhere to sleep the night. They pulled up outside some fancy looking gaff and knocked on the door. Some attractive midddle aged women answered the door and was immediately cornered by oddbod and oddbod junior, according to Mike peck, asking if they could sleep in her garage. She politely sent them packing and mike continued to hum the Carry on screaming tune. A further two miles on,they stopped again and started to point at a barn about a half mile from the road next to a farmhouse. We all dismounted and started to walk in the direction of the barn but half way across the field, all the lights sudddenly went on in the farmhouse and everyone legged it to the bikes. The next stop was a bus stop just off the A59 and we all dived in it to try to keep warm. John and Brian disappeared to look for somewhere better to sleep. While we where waiting for them to return some toe rags in a mini pulled up. They started shouting abuse at us - I don't know why but at the time there was a lot of bad feeling between bikers and mods, and I think they where mods. They eventually fucked off and not long after John and Brian returned saying they had found a barn. The barn was just off the A59 about half a mile from the bus stop we had been sitting in. Opposite to the barn was a farmhouse but it was dark and silent. After parking the bikes up, we crept into the barn and climbed up to the highest haystack. John started throwing bails of hay about to make a kind of den for us to sleep in. Mike threw someone's helmet down from the loft and started to piss in it and began laughing. When he had finished Brian burst out laughing because the helmet he had pissed in, was his own. Well not really, Mike didn't have a helmet he used my spare, which after this adventure I let him keep. John was smoking his head off all night, it's a miracle that we all didn't get burnt to death. I fell to sleep feeling warm and comfortable, thanks to the hay bunker John had built.
The following morning we had to make a mad dash for the bikes because the farmhouse was alive with the reving of tractor motors. The drive home was fairly uneventful passing through Preston city center, then heading south to Liverpool. We stopped at Liverpool airport for a cup of tea and John bumped into his father who worked as a cleaner at the airport and he hadn't seen for years.Just to clear up any confusion, although brothers Brian and John had different dads.
The only sad point about this memorable adventure is that poor Andy died about three weeks later, at the youthful age of nineteen.
The following year I went to Pendle with Loopy, our Della and Dave.I remember it well because I had to keep putting the drive chain back on Dave's bike, which he had borrowed from Millsy, it was a green Suzuki GT500a. He doesn't remember because his brains swimming backstroke in shit french wine. If Millsy doesn't remember then he's wanked out.
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