Voices in the Coalshed: What do they call you?
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Voices in the Coalshed: What do they call you?

This week we’re on the lookout for Lake-a-lot Dave!
So , what do they call you?
How many names have you had? You might have changed your name when you married; you might have changed your name because you didn’t like it; you might be known by your middle name or by one name at work and something different at home.
Coming home from school, I used to pass the house of a neighbour who, if he wanted to pass on a message or send some fruit or vegetables to my grandma, would call out to me, “Hello, Lawrence Sowden’s granddaughter! Take this to your Nana.” All said in a broad Yorkshire accent. He never asked my name but knew who I was.
Some of you might also have had a nickname which is what I have been thinking about since visiting the Pit Head Baths here at NCMME. If you look at the lockers you will see that some of them, in addition to their number have a name written on them. One in particular, clean end locker number 95, has the name Lake-a-Lot Dave on it. This caught my eye for two reasons; one because it made me think of Lancelot because it is mimicking that name, and the other because of the use of dialect. In Yorkshire dialect “lake” or “laik” means to play, someone might ask if you lake football for example. In terms of work though, it could suggest that he spent more time playing than working, what we might now call skiving. Did Dave write this name on the locker himself, or was it done by someone else as a joke when he was laking? I don’t suppose we will ever know!
If you take part in one of our regular Sunday tours of the Pit Head Baths here at the museum, have a look for Lake-a-Lot Dave’s locker. You might also look in the dirty side for the locker of “Flash Gordon”, I will leave you to think about why he got that name!
Perhaps you can tell us the story behind your nickname or that of someone you knew.
This week’s Voices in the Coalshed post was researched and written by volunteer Nicola. If you would like to join Voices in the Coal Shed, please get in touch with voicesinthecoalshed@gmail.com