Local Characters

Winnie Hogg
Villages were very close-knit before the War. People had to have nicknames in the village at that time because there were so many members of the same family, fathers and sons with the same Christian names. My father was called Scottie Archbold, George Archbold was called Cuddie and William Archbold was called Clippie. In the Smailes, there was Pittas Bob and Fire. Little Adam was the harbour man. You wouldn't have been able to differentiate, without the nicknames......

Joyce Shaw
My great grandfather and great, great grandfather were both called Akins. My grandfather was Little Akins. At one time there were twenty-three John Archbolds, and they all had a by-name, to distinguish one from another. I know some of the by-names - Beachy Bob, Jack Shil, (Shilbottle Jack), Crappy, he was a right bad-tempered man, then there was Foxy, Pittas Bob, Derby Jenny, Clippie (Bill Archbold), Sailor Bill (the man who built the 5 houses in Chapel Row), Aad Scottie, and Dode, These names were still used when we came here in 1967.

Little Akins
Old Akins
Jack Bowling
Billy the Trumpeter
Shilbottle Jack
Sanderson, North side, father of Mary Ann, Lizzie, etc.
Thos. W. Archbold, my father, son of John (Crappy).
Jack Stanton, South side, father of Rachel, Maggie Jane Seager etc.
Robert Archbold, father of Roger, etc.
Thos. Smailes, brother of "Beech".
Wm. Dawson (Church Street), married Nance Simpson, father of Chas
James Archbold, (Church Street) married his cousin Jane Archbold, father of Sam, Raffa, Jane, etc.
Joe (Tate) Archbold's father.
James Archbold father of "Little Akins", possibly from Acton, where the family once lived.
James Archbold, North side, married Mary Gibb, father of Wm Reid Archbold.
Wm. Gibb Archbold married Liz Bell, father of Eric etc.
Jack Archbold, Tom Bowling - Tom Archbold, brothers of Mary Jane who married Jos. Carss.
Geo Simpson, built 7, Church Street, uncle of Nance Dawson.
Wm. Dawson, built 5 Church Street, father of Camel.
Adam Archbold, married Jeannie Stephenson - son of Piemy, father of Ada and Winnie.
John Archbold, my grandfather.
Jack Archbold, married Ellen Smailes and built house at North side
Ralph Archbold, Annie Jane Nelson's father.
Thomas Grey. Esther McLaren's father and brother to Bob Grey, who had the Pub.
William Archbold, father of Adam and brother to Foxy.
Jack Shil - John Archbold, he lived at Shilbottle when young. He was Crappy's cousin.
Robert Smailes, married Peggy Stanton, built house on Garden Terrace, (West End)
Jack Smailes Fire's brother.
Wm. Stephenson, belonging Boulmer, married Bella Archbold nee Smailes,
Wm. Dawson, son of Edward, father of Robert John - North Craster.
John Smailes, father to Pidah.


Marjorie Lumsden
I don't think my grandfather would have been to Alnwick. It was a day's journey to get there, unless you walked to Little Mill to get the train. We had Rutherford's buses and before that we had Little Adam's bus. He was the harbour master and he had a little bus and he called it 'The Ocean Maid'. He was going from here to Boulmer and something blew in the engine - he opened the doors and shouted 'every man for hissel'. He thought the engine had gone on fire.

He stole a lot of copper from a ship that came ashore and he put it in the floor of the bus, underneath the wood. The police came to look for it and he said 'it's no good looking there mind' and of course they did and he was fined for stealing the copper. He offered the police a lift and because the bus was too heavy to start, that's how they found the copper.

Carol Grey
Eva never married, she was engaged to a gentleman but nothing came of it. She worked at the Store at Howick. She cycled to Howick and she told everybody that she made knickers last twice as long as they did because she 'turned them'. I don't know how she did it. Eva was a typical Archbold - she wouldn't spend a penny when a halfpenny would do. She was a housekeeper in Thropton for a little while. I can remember going to visit her, possibly on a Sunday. That was the only day we went out together. Mam told me that she was taking us along the rocks to see if there were any frogs and tadpoles and Eva asked 'what is the connection between frogs and tadpoles' and when told she said 'Do you know, I never knew that, I may as well have been brought up in a nunnery'. She was Secretary/Treasurer for the Hall and was one of the founder members of the W.I. She could keep you right on procedure.

Joyce Shaw
There were some real characters. The old lady that lived where Mrs. Davison lived, was Winnie Archbold's granny - Bella. When Matt Stephenson, who lived next door to Marjorie, got married - he would be in his 40's when he married - and he said to little Bella, who was a bit bad with her eyes - 'Bella, I've getten a good wife, she comes from Seahouses, they call her Eleanor White', Bella thought a bit and said 'she canna be that good or she would have been teken afore now'.

Billy Lumsden
There were 2 aviaries of canaries here. Jimmy Smailes had some and Jack Archbold. Now Jack was blind, and he had canaries up that garden. He had the feeders on the side, and he used to take the feeders down and blow into them the get the shell out. He could put it straight back. He was totally blind, so was his brother Roger. He used to put his fingers directly into the nests- he knew exactly where they were - to see how many little ones there were. He didn't show them, it was just a hobby. His old shed's up there now, it's covered in ivy.

Fred Stephenson
Billy Bunk was in America or Canada for a while and one of his famous sayings was
' The only thing we're good at is murdering bloody folk'. He used to live up the cut between the kipper yards and the restaurant.

Clippie (William Gibb Archbold, brother of Annie Jane Nelson and married to Liz Bell.)

Clippie Archbold (right) with Luke Robson

Eddie Grey
I remember Bill Archbold, Clippie as they called him - his nickname or bye-name - 'cause we used to play around about there, me and Dougie and Raymond, when we were younger and we used to run around his hut and he'd be mending the lobster pots and we used to shout 'Clippie' and he would chase us. If he caught you, he used to take the belt off and we got that. It wasn't often he caught us like. But he had a memory like an elephant, he never used to forget, he would get you a fortnight later.

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