Village Incomers or “Thank the Lord for new blood”

January 23, 2013 | 4 Comments | Filed under: 2013, February 2013, Guest Blog

Standing in the pub the other day, I couldn’t help overhearing a conversation at the bar. Two old-ish chaps were chatting over a glass of ruby colored ale. They were talking about the village “It Isn’t the same anymore”, one said. The gist of their conversation went something like this.

“ The village isn’t the same anymore is it? All these incomers. God only knows why they come, I mean, Taking all the houses, why though, there’s nothing here anymore. They come waltzing into the village thinking that they own the place, with their big ideas. They think they know it all with their big city ways. They’re all talk.”
Their argument wasn’t anything I hadn’t heard before, in fact If I’m really honest, I’d probably said some of the same things myself over the years. 
On this particular occasion though, it set me thinking about people who come to live in the Peak District villages.

Firstly, I’m one myself. I arrived in Tideswell as a baby, adopted by a local couple, I spent my formative years in the village. I can honestly say that I had a great childhood here. Growing up in Tidza had its ups and downs, especially when you are the only black face in town. Despite my obvious distinction, I quickly became a Tidza lad, and then later a Tideswell man. The people of the village welcomed and embraced me, and later others like me. So Tidza folk do have tolerant and welcoming hearts.

I mused on the thought that most of us know someone who isn’t originally from the village and most likely count some of our best friends amongst those who came to Tideswell from outside. 
Peak District villages are small places. They are however, in the main, within a short distance of each other. The village may have changed from how we remember it from when we were younger, but nothing stays the same. People have always moved around from village to village, looking for work or an escape from a difficult personal situation.

New people bring many positives to a village. When the village elders die, their skills sometimes die with them. A village can stagnate without a flow of new ideas, and skills. A village benefits when those skills allow us to tackle problems in new and innovative ways, helping us to develop and promote the culture and history of the village. Incomers also diversify the gene pool.

Chuckling into my beer, the conversation reminded me of the scene from Monty Python’s Life of Brian, The “People’s Front of Judea” were asking: “What did the Romans ever do for us, apart from bring better sanitation, medicine, education, irrigation and public health, roads and a freshwater system and baths and public order… what have the Romans done for us”?

We all love to have a moan sometimes, but now and then, it’s good to put suspicions and prejudices aside and remind ourselves of the benefits new people can bring.
,former resident and local blogger.

Read Phil Gregory’s blog on



4 Responses to Village Incomers or “Thank the Lord for new blood”

  1. Dale Norris January 23, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    Good comments again Phil. Another honest and perfectly true assessment of village life, in the past 30 years, as I can vouch for. So back to Monty Python…..” I know that, but apart from all those things, what did they do for us”?

  2. John Allen January 24, 2013 at 12:39 am

    And let us not forget Tideswell’s “outgoers” scattered across the globe, unbidden, but sharing a bit of Tidza with the unsuspecting natives wherever they go.

  3. Liz Boyd January 24, 2013 at 8:12 am

    Good point well made old friend. Why wouldn’t they want to live in the village, it’s an amazing place to raise a family/retire.
    Tidza folk are in general welcoming and accepting of new blood, just as long as the new blood doesn’t park outside their cottage!

  4. Tideswellman January 25, 2013 at 4:10 pm

    Thanks for the comments guys it’s always nice to get a bit of support. It was hard to write an article as short as this. I’m actually used to writing long rambling posts, so I enjoyed the challenge.

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