The 14 Habits of Hull #habitsofhull


Published: Monday 17th November 2014 by Paul Nickerson - Writer

Comments (14)

As Larkin said – Hull has a ‘different resonance’. It’s not absolutely clear what he meant by that, but we all know there’s something a bit different about our city, and us folk who live here.

We’ve come up with some seriously ‘Hullish’ habits from now and down the years that might sound familiar.  Share yours with #habitsofhull.

1. Getting Bob Carvers after Hull Fair 

Fair is not fair without Bob’s famous fish and chips. It’s always worth the queue to round off the night with a fish and chip supper. Just don’t have them before you go on the waltzers.

1 Bob Carvers

2. Making a call from a cream telephone box (or a bee coloured one)

Okay so we are more likely to use our mobile but they remain well-loved in the city and surrounding areas.


3. Feeling both embarrassed and proud when you see John Prescott on telly

He’s a bullish old goat but deep down we all love the many faces of this living Hull icon.

3. John Prescott

4. Telling people it’s NOT Humberside

The creation of local bureaucrats and universally hated –  Humberside came about in  1974 but was kiboshed 22 years later in 1996. Frustratingly it lingered on here and there until this year when MP Graham Stuart led a successful campaign to have it dropped from all Royal Mail records.

Humberside coat of arms

5. Queueing up at Dinsdale’s joke shop for Halloween 

It’s one of the oldest joke shops in Britain and is absolutely amazing. You never know what you’ll find in this Mecca to the bizarre and obscure.

Dinsdales Hull

6. Looking at old photographs of Whitefriargate and wondering what went wrong 

Lack of vision, high rents and poor architecture are some of the complex reasons this once magnificent street has died a thousands deaths.


7. Loving The Bee Lady 

92 year old Jean Bishop is loved and admired and now nationally recognised with the Pride of Britain Award.


8. Driving down Cleveland Street and remembering the days when you used to go to Spiders

It never changes, at least on the outside. Highlights in its day where the poll dancers and whisky at 40p per shot.


9. Remembering when Sainsbury’s was called Jacksons

The business goes back to 1851. The shop side of things had grown to 114 stores when it was sold to Sainsbury’s in 2004 and vanished from our streets .

Jacksons on Newland Ave

10. Going to Woodford and smelling french fries mixed with Chlorine 

Ah Woodford. Is it the smell of french fries mixed with chlorine that makes it so unique, the cafe being placed poolside it’s like being abroad (almost).

Ah Woodford. Is it the smell of french fries mixed with chlorine that makes it so unique.

11. Seeing the pink car on the roof of Yankee Burger 

Yankee Burger: Long since closed but a staple of the Hessle Road skyline for many good years.

Yankee Burger

12. Putting some spice on your chips 

It might say American but it’s as Hull as Wilberforce.


13. Driving to Spurn Point and being surprised just how far it is

Only 27 miles in all from Hull city centre but it takes well over an hour or more – the bendy roads seem endless.

Spurn Point

13.  Doing the splash boat at East Park

One of only 3 in the UK the East Park splash boat has been soaking us since 1929.


14. Saying the Humber Bridge is the longest single span suspension bridge in the world (even though it’s now 7th).

Opened in 1981, the Humber Bridge is  2,220 meters long. It boasted the record as the world’s longest single-span suspension bridge until frustratingly the Danes opened one that was longer.




Over to you…

What little habits make this place what it is? Let us know in the comments below or use #habitsofhull on Twitter

Related: 8 Beautiful old pictures of Hull at Christmas 

Published: Monday 17th November 2014 by Paul Nickerson - Writer

Comments (14)
  • Fiona Chatwin


  • Vince Barrett

    One of Each wi’ scraps!

  • Jenny


  • BADcloud

    Queen’s Gardens. From the fountain to the college, the quiet little area of town.
    Although, patties are still the one thing I have to get when visiting home.

  • Jeannie

    Loved and ‘laughed’ at all 14…but yes Pattie and mint sauce! Only in Hull !!

  • HelloIDoNotHaveAGoodName

    Shame that Bob Carver’s is horrible now! Went to their stall at Fair last year; the chips were ridiculously greasy and I only managed a few before they had to go in the bin because I felt sick. Disgusting.

  • The Outlooker

    Piss off Larkin with the city’s name, heytoday (gone sooner than you think) InJoy KINGSTON!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Erm what does that mean?

    • Paul Nickerson

      Erm – bizarre what does that mean?

      • The Outlooker

        Larkin is vernacular for ‘playing around’, i.e. you & alleged poet Larkin abusing the City name of KINGSTON (upon hull). Hull is in Ottowa, Canada.
        KINGSTON upon Hull is on the Ordnance Survey maps.
        Further I’m Larkin with the name ‘Heytoday’ with the old phrase ‘here today, gone tomorrow.
        Finally I simply went thro’ the alphabet from H (Hull) -> I -> J -> K = InJoy (Enjoy) KINGSTON. The City emblem also emphasises the correct name.
        Clear isn’t it.

        • Paul Nickerson

          So you’re saying use the full name KINGSTON upon Hull?

          • The Outlooker

            Yes, Please Do!! The more ‘KINGSTON upon Hull’ is published / announced the much more people will realise and use it too. It is a City and is entitled to it’s Proper Name.
            For some stupid reasons the local council & bbc tv station try to influence using the Incorrect abridged name because most locals do, so much rubbish comes from certain bodies.
            Do you say ‘Tyne’ for Newcastle upon Tyne – NO!
            Do you say ‘Trent’ for Stoke on Trent – NO!
            Do you say ‘Thames’ for Kingston upon Thames – NO!
            That’s the case proven.

  • ken

    What about Court School of Dancing above ABC in Ferensway on a Saturday & Sunday night? 400 18/20 year olds CRAMMED into a triangular dance floor, doing Ballroom & Latin till 9pm, then ‘disco’ (well, it was the 1970’s) for half an hour. Highlight of the night was the excuse me waltz at 10pm, & you stayed with the girl you ended up with for the ‘why’ dance, when all the lights went off for 2 records….. Ah, what memories!

  • Harry Ovett

    CAUTION about using Kingston upon Hull as an address. Our beloved Royal Mail are not as attentive as they used to be. I stopped using Kingston upon Hull (and now just use HULL) because I was bored of my mail taking 5 or more days to arrive after going via Kingston on Thames!!! I am only surprised that they didn’t try Kingston, Jamaica first.
    (NB dont try sending urgent mail to Winlaton, Tyne and Wear – it will only be routed via Wincanton, Somerset first!)

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