Earby is a small town / village in the district of Pendle which is part of Lancashire but confusingly Pendle is regarded as the West Riding of Yorkshire (became part of Lancashire due to historic border changes)
So what’s it like to live in this village? Well Lancashire boasts about its friendly hospitality, not the case though in Earby. If you’re arrogant, ignorant and love drinking then you’ll fit right in. Drinking and football is the local pastime. Most of the kids of primary school age spend most of their outdoor time dressed in their favourite team colours playing footy on the streets of where they live. The parents of encourage such play and even join in, taking over a street or road with the game. Go outside and ask if the noise can be kept down a bit or can they move away from peoples cars and you’ll be met met with a big red faced father saying “awrioght, their only playing and they live here so wots the problem?” Enter into further dialogue at your own peril as you’ll be met with some personal put downs and possibly the chance of the blokes wife stepping in to give some vocal support as well, all this happening while the kids look on. As for the children, well the adults could take a lesson in manners from them as most of are well behaved. Teens can be found hanging out in an evening either at what Earby calls a bus station or at a few other locations along Victoria Rd, favourite is the little seating area next to the car park of the council shop.
Drinkers are well catered for as there are a few local watering holes within walking distance of each other. One is situated on the corner of Victoria Road & School Lane and on summer day weekends you’ll find plenty of folk stood outside drinking and staring at anything that passes. On Friday & Saturday nights plenty of drinking, but the fun starts in the early hours where women can be heard screaming “leave him alone!!!” and “get off him!!” as another alcohol fuelled night out comes to an end.
Sunday evenings are better, the kids are called in off the streets to get bathed and sorted for school in the morning, then the sound of tin cans and bottles can be heard ringing out like a chorus as the homes are cleared of the weeks (or maybe just that weekends) quota of adult beverage holders into the recycling bins.
The staple diet seems to be BBQ’s in the summer (windows shut on summer evenings unless you want your home stinking like a BBQ pit!) and pizza’s or takeaways in winter. Every other house seems to have at least two dogs, many of which can be heard barking at most times.
What about Earby folk themselves? Well they’re not liked by Barnoldswick (Barlick) folk. Those from Blackburn and other such areas don’t regard Earby folk as proper Lancashire, and Earby folk don’t like anyone other than themselves. Most born and bred Earby folk are related to someone in the town and the blokes are better looking then the women. Driving in the area is like another world. Don’t expect any thank you’s if you give way for another motorist out of kindness, all you’ll get is a blank look or nothing at all. And if you slow down to let a motorist out at a junction then be prepared to actually stop and wait for that to happen, this is due to that act of kindness and courtesy being alien and causes a moment of confusion on what they should do. Mind you slowing down is risky in the first place as speed limits in Earby don’t apply. Keeping to the speed limit often gets you a weaving bumper hugger who is looking for that slim chance to get past you. Indicators on cars don’t work in Earby either.
Winter time can be rough. Earby can flood in prolonged heavy wet weather and the main route out past the Punch Bowl boozer is like a ski slope during heavy snowfall.
It’s not all bad though, there are plenty of nice walks to be had. Shame that famous Lancashire hospitality is not around, mind you I could be biased due to being a Yorkshire man who lived in Earby for many years, so would I live there again? Not really, I like normal not weird!