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About A Week: Quiz Night

Peter Hinchliffe is stumped by the quiz night questions at his local working men’s club.

Quiz night in Rowley Hill Working Men’s Club, Lepton. Members settle down and give their best attention to quiz-master Brian Troop.

Now I can guess what some of you are thinking. Working men’s clubs. Donkey jackets hanging by the door. Gents with calloused hands downing pints with gusto. Football as the sole topic of conversation.

Just ask ‘em who captained Huddersfield Town in 1972, the name of Bolton Wanderers’ new ground, which team was the first to achieve the League and Cup double.

Think again. I’d bet a fiver that the Brain of Britain couldn’t give correct answers to the 40 questions.

Brian worked in the engineering industry for most of his life. When he was in his fifties the firm he worked for closed down. He then became a librarian, one of the team which runs the local history section in Huddersfield Central Library.

He alternates as quiz master week by week with Tony Warren who is a staff nurse. Tony, who hails from Padiham, says he likes living dangerously. “I must do,’’ he says. “I’m a Lancashire lad living in Yorkshire.’’

They set tough questions, these two. Tough enough to make Who Wants To Be A Millionaire seem like a game for primary school kids.

Just exercise your brains on these 10 questions, selected at random from one of Brian’s recent quizzes.

1 In which county is Fotheringay Castle where Mary Queen of Scots was executed?

2 Who followed Khrushchev as Russian leader in 1964.

3 Diggers, spiders and potters. What kind of creature are these?

4 From which kind of wood is a baseball bat made?

5 Whose biography was entitled Losing My Virginity?

6 Complete this slogan from World War 2. Be like Dad…

7 Who was the last English king to die in battle?

8 What have Elvis Presley, Henry Cooper and Mark Thatcher in common?

9 Under what name did Goldie Mabovitch of Milwaukee become famous?

10 Which is the nearest point of England to Ireland?

(Answers at the foot of this column).

Old impressions and images are hard to erase. Some still choose to see working men’s clubs as dens for chaps who wear cloth caps, all of them desperate to swill the dust of manual work from their throats with cheap beer.

Nowadays almost as many women as men patronise clubs. And in these times when many English pubs should more accurately call themselves restaurants the working men’s clubs have become classless havens for socialising and conversation.

In some village clubs you are now just as likely to rub shoulders with a teacher or university lecturer as you are with a labourer or plumber.

Henry Solly set high ideals when he drew up a prospectus for the Club and Institute Union in 1862.

“This Union is formed for the purpose of helping working men to establish clubs and institutes where they can meet for conversation, business and mental improvement, with the means of recreation and refreshment, free from intoxicating drinks. These clubs are for mutual helpfulness.”

Old Henry might have clicked his tongue if he knew that beer is kept and sold at Rowley Hill Club. But he would relish the conversation and the challenge of quiz night.

How did you do with Brian’s 10 teasers? Here are the answers.

1 Northumberland. 2 Kosygin. 3 Wasps. 4 Ash. 5 Richard Branson. 6 Keep Mum. 7 Richard the Third. 8 They are twins. 9 Golda Maier. 10 St Bees Head.


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