Yorkshire Slang

Northern British Sayings #2: Snicket/Ginnel/Gennel

A “snicket” is an alleyway or passageway, and in Barnsley in South Yorkshire the word is used to mean a path, typically between fences or walls, in an open space or field, or between gardens.

A “ginnel” pronounced (pronounced with a hard “g” as in “gun”) is again an alleyway or passageway, but it the term is generally (in Barnsley) used to refer to a gap between houses (for example), or between buildings.

In Sheffield (some fifteen full miles away from Barnsley, but still in Yorkshire), these words are not used, but the alternative word “gennel” (pronounced “jennel”) is used.

Any other local variations? Please comment!

Posted by Steve Wetherill in Yorkshire Slang, 11 comments

Northern British Sayings #1: Ha’porth

Been thinking about this for a while, so here goes. For the amusement,  amazement or probably just the general bemusement of all, I present the first in a series of, “Northern British Sayings”. Could be just a word, or maybe an expression. Probably some dialect things. I’m going to give my interpretation of these, be interesting to hear alternatives in the comments. Since I am a Yorkshireman, my interpretation will generally have a “Yorkshire” perspective. Yes, these are things that people actually say, today (for the benefit of my American friends). 🙂

#1 Ha’porth 

As in, “He doesn’t have an ha’porth of sense.” Or, “You daft ha’porth.”

Pronounced, “aye-peth”, this is a contraction of “Half-penny worth”. So, “He doesn’t have a half-penny worth of sense.”

Incidentally, a half-penny is known as an “ha’penny”, pronounced “aye-penny”. 

Posted by Steve Wetherill in Yorkshire Slang, 5 comments