... a bit Suffolk
tu 28 Nov
... all female world of roller derby
fr 20 Oct
Very much approve of this, tomorrow the London Rockin' Rollers celebrate 10 years with an old school roller derby; two whistle starts, minors (remember taking a cougar?) plus tutus and fishnets. Our memory may be gilded but we recall the two whistle start did make for more variety in play ...
th 28 Sep
we 20 Sep
It continues to surprise us how popular roller skating was as an entertainment at the beginning of last century, including the magnificent looking Great Yarmouth Winter Gardens. In today's long running Radio 4 drama Home Front set during the first world war a couple go roller skating on Folkestone pier. Mrs Adeline Lumley: I'm afraid I'll fall over. Staff Sergeant Silas Morrow: That's the idea.
we 23 Aug
Near Houghton Regis Saturday our satnav didn't know about some new roundabouts but unlike our last visit this wasn't a problem and we got to enjoy two entertaining roller derby bouts hosted by Rebellion Roller Derby. Our thanks to the Reb's 69 Hench for rescuing a flash we foolishly dropped into the ref lane during a jam. Derby name of the day Firth of Force.
su 13 Aug
Saturday the Riverside Centre Chelmsford didn't have a functioning car park but it does have decent coffee and in the sports hall we enjoyed ref Blaster Chief's very clear penalty signals and a Surrey skater fleeing during the first half because she was needed elsewhere as a bridesmaid. A Norfolk Brawds 473-065 whitewash of Surrey RG but we've been told Surrey have lost experienced jammers. The Killa Hurtz v Hell's Belles bout was an absolute cracker! Pretty much even stevens all the way it could have gone either way on the final jam with a Belle's 246-240 win. Derby name of the day (a bit tortuous but East Anglian) Hurt-Ratio Nelson and for us a happy return to the Riverside.
tu 11 Jul
Last century roller skating on Bournemouth Pier was certainly al fresco and possibly ad hoc, impressive how many ladies involved and muffs (possibly echoing ice skating) were clearly a fashion accessory but what intrigues is why the two ladies at the back of the Dunfermline roller skating brass band need a bucket?
mo 12 Jun
Pretty obvious why on the outskirts of Stamford the shiny new sports centre and home of the Daniels is called Borderville ... it's maybe just 100 yards from the county border with Rutland. On Saturday a clash with a children's party in the hall slowed things down but the track was already laid, the bouncy castle soon packed away and NSOs instructed. A bunch of friends, relatives and potential derbyists got to see a lively Borderland Brawlers scrimmage and were soon picking it up ... two small boys near us were advising the jammer to pass the star. Derby name of the day Eiffel Power.
th 8 Jun
We do wonder if like laptops/tablets and glasses of wine today early last century roller skates were used to make people appear up to date with a sophisticated look and lifestyle ... like it does today:)
tu 9 May
The Spectrum Leisure Centre Guildford is a warren with an ice rink, swimming pool and of course a bloody Costa Coffee. Hosts Surrey Roller Girls had a theatrical element to their skate out of which we much approve but then they were rather overwhelmed 423-34 by Rebellion Roller Derby. Perhaps in that situation more offence than defence because their jammer is just going to keep on lapping until you get your jammer out ... but then what do we know? Derby name of the day Hunter Stompson (2 clever by 1/2).
fr 28 Apr
It doesn't surprise us that the the London Roller Girls have a junior league.
th 23 Feb
There was a period mid last century when with variety and the wireless you could make a living from whistling and playing the harmonica. As we've pointed out before earlier in that century you could make a living from rolling ... just l♥ve Dainty Dolly Mitchell.
sa 7 Jan
sa 3 Sep
H.P. Shovecraft emailed pointing out that removing the star panty in the penalty box is specifically illegal in next year's WFDTA rules. We do dearly love roller derby but how can you take seriously a sport where a skill is putting a hat on? But then taking off a skin suit whilst running is a triathlon skill ...
tu 26 Jul
th 21 Jul
Saturday in Ipswich despite losing Inky Minx to the London Roller Girls this year Rebellion Roller Derby had a comfortable 282-93 win against a not a pushover Vendetta Vixens plus the Rebs made the team photo of the year. Creepy? Oh yes, they can do creepy.
What surprises us about roller skating at the beginning of last century (apart from how universal roller rinks were in the UK and US) is how many staff were employed (34 at Earl's Court) and usually included women ... presumably to teach the ladies. A worrying detail is the absence of toe stops but then there weren't any on our Jacoskates we just wore out the toes of our shoes.
mo 23 May
su 24 Jan
Crikey! A Chelmsford Killa Hurtz Girl on a corner in Wimslow Arizona and isn't she a sight to see.
th 14 Oct
tu 15 Sep
Pictorial evidence that roller derby always was co-ed ... and East Anglian.
we 26 Aug
We've added Dan Buster to our Suffolk gents page.
we 29 Oct
In Cambridge Saturday the support bout of Billies B v Vendetta Vixens B Lost Girls contained the new to us Billy Diana Sprints. Slight of build and small enough that the star panty looked too big on her helmet not surprisingly she is a slippery jammer but also a determined blocker.
In the main bout's first half Belfast were pulling away from the Rollerbillies when they failed to get a jammer on the track. Handing the Billies a free two minute power jam turned the momentum but the Belfast hung in leading to tense final jams and a 187-183 Belfast win.
tu 9 Sep
In July Nottingham Roller Girl Louise Wright cycling to work was hit by a Greene King lorry and died later that day in hospital ... her derby name was Louisey Rider ...
su 10 Aug
Yesterday we felt derby and Scottish lve in Cambridge.
we 2 Apr
We're not the only April foolers.
su 1 Dec
At the start of Pivots of Penzance in High Wycombe last weekend the slippery Portsmouth Roller Wenches' jammers were sliding through the pack untouched and we feared a tedious whitewash and though by the half the Big Bucks High Rollers had started to function the Wenches still had a comfortable lead. Impressively only one official timeout in the half. Halfway through the second half Big Bucks took the lead and then power jams (in derby you do need to keep your jammer on the track) generated an entertaining 227-161 win for Bucks. Much commitment to the pirate theme and derby name of the day Halcyon Daze.
we 22 Jan
fr 29 Nov
Here's a candidate for awkward roller derby photo.
fr 8 Nov
sa 1 Jun
We got an honourable mention last month ... which was nice.
su 28 Apr
The Romsey Rollerbillies aren't big ladies but on average their skaters looked a little larger than the Norfolk Brawds' and when combined with consistently strong blocking maybe it contributed to a truly awesome 400-38 drubbing of a slightly short handed Brawds in Cambridge last weekend. Like rowing eights and rugby union packs perhaps weight is relevant? Maybe a team's average skater weight should be in the programme?
Rebellion Roller Derby who like the Brawds and Wilts favour the short handed approach had a comfortable 214-110 win over Hell's Belles and got away with a piece of derbyness so cheeky we only saw it in the edit afterwards. After party at the Tram Shed, derby name of the day Xavier Bacon (refs are people too); next month's Heartlands series at Milton Keynes and the Rebellion ... oh yeah!
th 21 Mar
Saturday in Oxford we admired the Severn Torrent's uniforms and asked a jammer if the uniform had any padding No, it's all woman. Severn followed in the west country tradition set by Wilts and despite being a short handed 11 against 14 steadily moved away to a substantial 310-83 win over Wolves. (Liked the howling and Time Warp dancing Wolves ♫It's just a step to the left♫).
Czech-point Zuzi said Wilts did have a full fourteen but this included a goodly number of debutants and the core of the team was still quite small. Impressively Wilts made and kept a useful lead over hosts Oxford for most of the game until the last five minutes when Oxford started to come back ... perhaps Wilts were panicking. Early in the final jam the Wilts jammer got a slightly baffling track cut call and amidst threshold of pain spectatorial noise Dread Ditto made a six pass power jam for a 178-170 win. Gobsmacked would be the word to describe the Oxford bench. The Wilts jammer said I really could cry ... you win some you lose some but we share your tears Wiltshire jammer.
we 6 Mar
♫Our first problem Saturday night was thinking the Ipswich Spread Eagle is the Falcon ... it hasn't been the Falcon for some time apparently. In the wilderness of an Ipswich Sunday night finding someone to solve our confusion we discovered the Giles family statue has moved to the other side of the road and the Cromwell Square car park has gained a statue of ... more on the Ipswich page
tu 5 Feb
The first bout of the Heartland series Saturday started with a minutes !NOISE! in memory of Rebellion RD skater and director Karen Beulah Ballbreaker Parks.
Though the Vendetta Vixens 133-217 Oxford Roller Derby bout was very excellent it got rather washed away in our memory by what was to come. Thankfully no serious injuries in either bout but Vixens' Lucy Go-Lightly did take a promptly called high block to the face and though she skated on it was clearly painful.
In only their third or so public bout just eight Wiltshire RD skaters took on a full 14 Concrete Cows team and won! No, you couldn't make it up, power jams put Wilts ahead in the first half and we Brits do ♥ love an underdog, the non-Cows part of the crowd really got behind Wilts who held on to win 206-184 despite losing Mega Faye Tality towards the end for seven plain vanilla (the only kind now) penalties. Stunning!
Derby didn't look that different under the new no minors rule set though the one whistle start prompts jammer line starts. Time on the day limited the theatre of the skate outs, pity.
th 24 Jan
RaRa's is a new to us 50s themed ice cream parlour in Northgate Street Ipswich and they stayed open later last night for the first get together of the still provisionally named Ipswich Roller Derby. A little slow getting started because first spectacularly multiple sundaes had to be served but then the presentation was well thought out, bubbley and babberly. Next up a social, hopefully a visit to Rutland for Mean Valley v Norfolk Brawds and training starts March; with Amy and Ryan's obvious overflowing enthusiasm this has got to be a winner ... finally derby comes to East Suffolk!
su 6 Jan
Look what the Milton Keynes Concrete Cows sent us in the post and a badge too.