talk northern to me
Featured,  Life

Talk Dirty (Northern) To Me

Today I received a package with the following note included:

My nice new packaging hasn’t arrived yet so please accept this Shan post -it heart as a token of my gratitude.

My response was, quite obviously

Ah that’s nice. 

Whereas Rory’s was…


See, Rory and I aren’t from the same part of town. Heck, we’re not even from the same part of the country.
He is Leeds through and through whereas I, despite this almost southern accent, did most of my growing up in the ACTUAL North.
The North East in fact – no not Newcastle, there is more to the North East than Newcastle!

Although we spent our formative years a mere 74 miles apart, you’d think I spoke a foreign language sometimes – there are some things I say and he professes not to have a clue what I’m on about, sometimes even suggesting that I’ve made these things up!

Here are some of the words claims not to understand – I’m sure he just secretly likes it when I talk dirty Northern to him.


If someone is being ‘shan’ or ‘shan as’ to use the full term, they’re being a bit crap. 
Are you coming out tonight?
No, I’m washing my hair.
Ugh, you’re shan as, you are.

It can also be used to refer to oneself feeling a bit silly.
“I was dancing in the living room, the cat looked at me like I was stupid. I felt shan as”

N.B: No one REALLY knows what the ‘as’ is but it does add emphasis.


To throw.
Shot us that book over. 

It can also be used to describe precipitation much to Rory’s dismay.
We’re not going to the park, it’s shotting it down.
In our house that statement is generally followed by


To give a friend a lift on your bicycle.
Apparently ‘croggy’ is a ridiculous term for this method of transportation but ‘a saddle’ is a sensible term.
Pfft well aye.

Well Aye

This is generally an agreeable term BUT the execution of the response determines what is meant.
Are you coming to the pub?
Well aye.
In this instance we can accept it as a simple ‘Yes’

I would never do THAT.
*eyeroll* Well aye.
Here, the eye roll indicates we don’t actually believe you but life is too short and you are too stupid so I won’t bother arguing.


An idiot.
I just walked into that door.


See Rarf.
In Leeds they say Doylum though.


Now this one has dual meaning. It’s a useful word that can mean both ‘quite’ and ‘good’.
That’s canny big that like.
That’s canny that is.
That’s canny good can cause confusion though.


Hot, like really hot.
Open a window, I’m mafting.
It doesn’t happen that often in the North East.
Or Leeds.


This is generally used to describe the appearance of someone in a negative way whilst down town.
Look at the clip of him/her.
The clip on that. 

Swear down

To really, REALLY promise that the truth is being told. Usually used by someone who absolutely is not telling the truth. Sometimes they add the life of a loved one on the end to prove just how honest they are being.

I swear down on me mam’s life.

The person who uses this must NOT be trusted one bit and their loved ones should probably question the amount of love this individual actually has for them.
Swear down can also be used, less frequently, as an exclamation of frustration.
Ugh, swear down. 


To wretch.
The smell of hops from Cameron’s makes me gip. 


Essentially means ‘come on’, is most effective when said in a whiney way when wanting someone to do something they don’t really want to.
Come to the pub, hawaaaaay.
Don’t be shan man. 


Sweets. Obviously sweets! Be careful who you ask for this one though or you may be finding yourself on a bit more than a sugar high…


Chewing gum.
No, I have no idea either.

This is the perfect place to put together what we’ve learned this far together:

Gis a chuddy.
I don’t have any.
Haway, I know you’ve got some ket!
I haven’t, I swear down on me mam’s life.
*Eye roll* well aye.
You’re shan as, you like.
Yeah well, you’re a rarf. 

Monkey’s Blood

Strawberry sauce for your ice cream. What else would you call it?

Film, Tour and Moor

Now, these words are used in the universally accepted way. Interestingly though, in the North East they have more syllables.
Film is pronounced Filum.
Tour is pronounced Toower
Moor is pronounced Moower.

You are now ready to thoroughly enjoy a day trip to the beautiful North East.





Thanks for reading, I'd love to know what you think.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: