I’m a bit of a word nerd. Don’t ever tell me something is “very unique” because I will cringe and tell you why that phrase is grammatically incorrect. Please mind your punctuation. Look up the difference between “fewer” and “less” if you don’t know. Understand that I am fairly forgiving and that I also make no claims to being perfect, but I’m also just a tiny bit picky.
The British are fairly particular about their use of words, though, of course, no one is perfect. There’s a wonderful history here of funny, weird, even unique, place names, nicknames, and words that make you go “hmm.” And make you laugh.
Take, for instance, “Preston’s of Potto.” The “Preston” in question is a family name, the “Potto” is the name of the village in Yorkshire where the company specializes in “logistics” (whatever does that mean?). Travel on the motorway here and you will see a variety of trucks hauling whatever a logistics company hauls, all labeled proudly “Preston’s of Potto.” And I laugh every time.
Perhaps you’d like to travel down Gravelly Bottom Road along with my children, who find the name hysterical. Maybe you want to visit Hoo Junction, though it’s not that interesting, as it’s only a train yard. Good name, though. Perhaps you want to reside in a house called “Dumpling Farm” (mmm, dumplings… yes please!). Then there’s the train stop named “Ball & Bat,” or the village named “Barking.”
Add to the list villages named: Beer, Happy Bottom, Jolly’s Bottom, Scratchy Bottom, Ramsbottom, Six Mile Bottom, Pratt’s Bottom, Wet Rain, Upper Bleeding, Bishops Itchington, Knockerdown, Crackpot, The Furry, Fanny Barks, Giggleswick, Thong, and Nether Wallop. And oh, good grief, I kid you not: Queen’s Colon.
There are many, many more, some of which won’t appear in this blog (my parents read it, after all) because they are a bit rude by modern standards.
Any British place names you’d like to share? (Keep it clean, please!)
Photo courtesy of morgueFile.