Posted by: suemason | October 7, 2009


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When I was bound apprentice in famous Lincolnshire,
Full well I served my master for more than seven years,
Till I took up to poaching, as you shall quickly hear,
Oh, ’tis my delight on a shiny night in the season of the year.

When we was bound in JOWETTS to Famous Lincolnshire
We motored there from North and South, quite safe despite our fears
‘Til we arrived at the Castle Inn, as you shall quickly hear
Oh ‘twas our delight on a shiny night in the season of the year


But enough of that. And apologies to anon, who penned the original words of The Lincolnshire Poacher back in the midst of time, thus giving the rustics of that County a reputation for behaviour that in this day and age would have warranted an ASBO.

The tune of this famous folk song was in my head long before we left Cheshire, and a visit to the Museum of Lincolnshire Life didn’t help my ‘ear worm’ as part of the display included a recording of the celebrated tune to which the Royal Anglian and Royal Lincolnshire Regiment marches.

But I am running ahead of myself. This weekend had been meticulously planned by Dianne, as a joint Midland/Northwest excursion and she could not have chosen a better location than Lincoln.

Jowetts at Castle Inn<

Selection of cars at Hotel. Castle walls in background

The Castle Inn in WestGate had views over the Cathedral and the City walls, and the famous steep streets were within walking and gasping distance. So was the Museum and The Lawn, location of a tiny tropical garden celebrating the work of Sir Joseph Banks who was botanist with Captain Cook on his voyage to Australia.

The Australian theme continued when Alastair joined us for dinner direct from his trip to Oz. He’ll travel miles for a good dinner, and this one certainly was delicious and well presented.

So we heard all about the Jowett Car Club Australia Section and the Blue Mountains. (see previous entry in this blog )

Dinner and eating always feature as an attraction at all our meetings, so we were pleased when Tony and Angela from the Midland Section also joined us for dinner, making a grand total of 23 Jowett personnel. How providential too that when he was told about the broken door handle, Tony was able to offer a spare part for David’s Jupiter.

And it is of course all the people who make these occasions such fun. This trip was no exception and we found ourselves discussing the merits of operdildock and glycerine as a hand lotion. No we didn’t know either, so set about investigating via Google and the Internet.

Operdildock only appears once on this vast global net of information, in one reference to letters written in nineteenth century America. So we at the Jowett Car Club are proud to have increased the frequency of Operdildock, even though we still don’t know what it is exactly. Ask Les.

Amongst our number were Peter and Christina, who on a previous occasion in Lincoln had turned up at the Cathedral bell tower and offered their services as bell ringers. We learned from them that the casting of bells in the UK has recently been reduced to one remaining company. Sad.

Ellis' Windmill

Ellis' Windmill

We walked from the Hotel to the last working windmill in Lincoln, and from the dedicated guides, heard a similar story about vanishing skills in windmill building. The first windmill was built in Yorkshire in the twelfth century. Maybe the inventors of that were ancestors of our own Bill and Ben, Jowett brothers or maybe the other Bill and Ben (cue another song)

Of course the unsuspecting public were also drawn into our fun, and we met many who showed interest in our vehicles. At the Museum of Transport Michael and Kate in their iconic Bradford Lorry, were allowed to dive into the skip and retrieve useful items: the advantages of travelling with that amount of luggage space.

Jowett at Transport MuseumBeautiful day; beautiful cars

Young Linconshire students showed great interest in the cars and two students of photography photographed them from many angles: perhaps they will post the results here. And the carpentry student from Germany was introduced to Paul’s 1938 car, and Les managed not to mention the war. We didn’t hold back though when we met a passing businessman whose target was buying cement from the French.

Now a final piece of information learned on this trip: to rid yourself of a tune that won’t go away, we are reliably informed that to sing that most patriotic of songs, ‘Land of Hope and Glory’ will do the trick. Goodbye, Lincolnshire Poacher, (hello Pomp and Circumstance)

jupiter cheshireLincoln behind: Cheshire ahead


  1. Sue – I understand from Les White that you have been trying to find out about and old remedy for sore hands – that of Opodeldoc and Glycerine. Note the different spelling – there is a good decription and even a recipe for this liniment on Wikipedia; but it was essentially a mixture of soap, camphor and alcholhol with various other herbs added. The local Pharmacist’s would mix this with Glycerine to make the ointment. It was commonly used here in Yorkshire.

  2. Mike, a brilliant comment. You win the prize.
    The spelling is indeed interesting, as the one I keyed into Google operdildock (sic) did throw up a link to a reference in USA archives.
    Les told us that he used this when he was working in the building trade. I can vouch that he does not have the rough and horny hands of a man of toil: and don’t ask how I know.

  3. Having just been to Boots to discover that they no longer stock opodeldoc (phonetically from my youth in Yorkshire ‘apadildoc’!) and therefore can’t supply my mix of half and half with glycerine, I am resorting to net searching for a supply – hence encountered your article. What you miss from your account is that it is the most efficacious remedy for chapped hands in the world! put on before going to bed, it works wonders overnight. I also love the smell, though my husband hates it!!

    • I am sure that were you to ask Les White, he would be able to source operdildock (and who on earth knows how it is spelt!) for you. He and his brother seem to be the world authority on this
      Meanwhile, I await my present of GRAVY SALT, without which, I am told, no Yorkshire dinner is complete. Over to you, Les

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