A brief introduction to some of the 'inhabitants' of the old Station Bar and its environs:
Finlo Qualtrough, pw chargehand on the "Northern" has the reputation of being able to shin down a drainpipe, run two hundred metres and cycle like the wind, all with his trousers round his ankles. A favourite with the lady gatekeepers, his pw trolley can often be found next to a crossing lodge
Eric The Loon, one of Finlo Qualtrough's gang, built like an ox, able to lift rail lengths single handedly. Alleged minor criminal and dim of wit
The Galoot, another of Finlo's gang, no one knows his real name
Juan Faragher, Eric the Loon's nephew, some say " a chip off the old block" and they could be right
Pheric Thrussell, Juan's sidekick. His family were adversely affected by the Dumbbells Bank crash
Roley Radcliffe, stationmaster, nicknamed after the watch he keeps looking at whilst awaiting arrivals, nothing ever leaves His station late, even if it does
The Rev Hendry Boyd, vicar of St. Cleminsons church
Porky Quayle, train guard in spring and summer, bus conductor in autumn and winter. Thinks he is called Porky because he used to be a butcher, but it isn't the reason at all. Keeps his railway and road services uniform buttons on a string, which is pulled through the jacket according to the season
The Foxdale PW Crew, not to be argued with, outside of working hours ( which are when they feel like it) can be found in the Baltic public house. Comprising of "Granite", "Semtex" and "Cauliflower"
Mrs and Mr Landlord, proprietors of the Station Bar, Mrs Landlord being the driving force behind the business as well as being chairperson of the lady Licenced Victuallers, secretary of the local W.I. And a malicious gossip. Mr Landlord runs an under the counter bookie service.
Splash Gordon, one of the railway painters, liberal in the use of masking tape
Deemster Kissack, owner of Ballavague Mansion, and serial philanderer
Whacker Caine, schoolmaster, teaches history and is in charge of outdoor pursuits
"Worzel" Gammidge, railway traffic manager and inventor of the filo fags memo system
The Ramsey Butchers, think rugby team, only worse, on a night out
'Lucky' Joughin gets his name from the fact that he isn't; he has eight and half fingers, if you include his thumbs. That big circular saw at Auldyn Works has a lot to answer for.
Mr and Mrs Pardhew, come-overs. Mr is the local scoutmaster, with the running gag that wherever he goes, he gets lost. Mr Pardhew's first cousin is the famously dissolute water colourist, Daventry Pardhew.
And then there are The Artists: Hector Umbrage, Poppy Hedges (harpist) and the dull Danish poet whose name escapes me.
Mr Peel owner of the kipper smokehouse
Mrs Crellin works in the bakery; Mrs Crellin is a devout attender at St Cleminson's, as are The Misses Clarke. The latter are retired elderly spinsters who take pleasure in home made sloe gin, yoghurt, and each other. They quite possibly ran a hatmakers; shop in Parliament Street.
Miss Agneash Christian runs the Sunday School, is young, and pretty: she may become the love interest for Dave the PV.
The Manx Language Trust (or was it Guild?)
Mrs Kissack, the Deemsters wife, who danced naked on the pool table last Christmas and drank all the vinegar from the jar of pickled eggs in Dirty Dan's chip shop on the way home.
Fenella's sister, Mona, works at a care home in the deep south. She has a hands-on role with several of the gentlemen residents. F & M's brother Douglas has yet to appear, but he exists, if only as dark matter which can't be seen but makes the whole thing balance.
Simply' Devine, stationmaster at Glen Auldyn; as camp as a road-mender's tent, but universally popular.
Claggy Clugston, engine driver, who is heavy on the regulator and light on the oil; husband to Stella, and father to Tia Marie and Bailey.
Charlie Clugston, brother of the above, local coal merchant
The Boys From The West, who are a band made up of two policemen and a Charles Bronson lookalike, with a penchant for handcuffs.
And then there's Curtis Devereau, of course: the patron saint of rivet counters.
The Old Overcoat, nemesis of Curtis, writer of Railway and Shipping histories, and author of Russian Spy novels, collector of Railwayana, by fair means or foul. Not to be stood downwind of.
The Old Overcoat
"Worzel" Gammidge, Railway traffic manager and inventor of the Filo Fags data recording system, whereby information is written down on the back of cigarette packets and subsequently lost.
Dave the progressive vicar, runs the church youth club
The Old Buzzard, the Landlords little helper, often found in the cellars admiring his collection of Artistic Magazines
Voirrey Anne, The Landlords daughter
"Kippers" Kerruish, railway yard man and fly shunter of legend. A limping health and safety nightmare. Usually to be found cleaning out fish or cattle wagons with a brush and bucket. A bit of a loner, only has the one set of overalls
Constance Craven, crossing keeper with a passion for murder mysteries. Has been married at least four times, all of her husbands vanishing without trace. The track by her crossing keepers hut is very uneven, but this is one lady Finlo is going nowhere near.
Reginald Tinkleswell, organist at St Cleminson's. He was formerly the organist at the Picture House Douglas having been assistant organist to Dr George Tootell at the Regal. Reg has a three-legged poodle named Isabella.
IMR fitter Allen Link with the three legged Great Dane named Tynwald. Allen is temperamental at times and still reserves special hatred for the driver of the Land Rover on test that maimed Tynwald, a certain Mr. Bradshaw. He can also get into heated debates about the history of the railway with anyone who dares to cross his version of reality.
Farmer Cringle, tenant of the Ballavague Farm, and the Deemsters first call alibi in sticky situations, is also auctioneer at the cattle and livestock mart.
Mr Cowley, village postmaster. Chairman of the local heritage trust, slightly deaf.
Ossian Quayle, antiquarian. Has catalogued more runic crosses than you've had hot dinners, laddie.
Tony Tunnock, infuriatingly effervescent local radio presenter, his daily radio show "T Time With Tunnock" is almost unavoidable as it contains the main news bulletin for the region within its broadcasting hours.
Aralt Crovan, Viking, son of Godred Crovan, died in the 11th century and the subject of an ongoing search.
Effie, cook at the Station Bar. So called because she commands her kitchen "in the Gordon Ramsay style"
Lucas Clucas, garage mechanic friend of Voirrey-Ann. Adept with a spanner, but also a skilled impersonator. A frequent caller on Tony Tunnock's show, to the point where all the listeners phoning the programme are in fact Lucas' creations.
David Dickinson, himself
Julia Bradbury, herself
The Gaffer. Looks like an Old Testament prophet; prodigious drinker of tea. Although he works for a building restoration company from Across, his approach to work makes traa di looar seem positively hasty.
The Porkupines, a retro punk band old enough to have been there first time around. Their hit record, Pork Scratchings, made it into the lower reaches of the Manx hit parade in October 1978.
The Kelly Twins. Shellie and Kellie (yes, Kellie Kelly: you just couldn't make it up) have represented the Island in cultural and sporting events: Kellie was Manx Junior Laureate, whilst Shellie practises Lurgey Dhoo ('Black Shin'), a traditional Manx martial art, similar to Dorset shin kicking
Willy Leonetti, member of the pw Gang and purveyor of tall stories. Eric the Loon and The Galoot have christened him "Dolmio", as they have worked out almost all he says is a load of bolognese.
Constable Blake Turner. Local Bobby, goes everywhere on his pushbike as division don't trust him with a van. The vehicle they gave him when he was stationed to the beat was found in a ditch, full of potatoes and several chickens.
Orry Finnegan, the bearded bear of the police force. A Special Constable whom police top brass would like to employ full-time, due to his phenomenal success rate.
'Liss', the Victorian Collector from the Manx Museum. Looks like Rosa Klebb with Edwina Currie's eyebrows. A Force To Be Reckoned With.
Loglan Cane. One of the Goods Shed Gang, i.e a harmless (if bored) adolescent who is treated with suspicion by everyone. Recently apprenticed to The Gaffer, he is (surprise surprise) hard working, responsible and good company.
Mrs Singleton. Owner of the local Tea Rooms.
Mrs Cottier: supplier of cake. May turn out to be the Rev H-B's housekeeper.
My Lord Bishop: Long suffering intermediary between The Almighty and the parishoners of Sodor and Man; inhabits Bishopscourt (circa 1953). Drives an old-school Bentley. A steam enthusiast in the mould of Teddy Boston. Now sadly departed the Diocese in the aftermath of a disastrous relationship that occurred during a holiday to Thailand in 2015.
The Rural Dean. Somewhat severe, his job is to stop any building he is responsible for from falling down. If he had a family crest, it would feature Jurby church.
Mrs Ethel Costain, purveyor of tea to the Tourist Trophy. A lynchpin in the WI, she wields a ten pint teapot with the same grace as the riders bring to their motorbikes. There is an ongoing rivalry between her and Mrs Singleton at the tea rooms.
Dirk Kerruish, cowboy builder. If a job needs doing, you probably want someone else to do it. Spends much time sitting in a high stool by the bar on wet days, before disappearing to energise the black economy.
Rufus Carnegie and Karel Niewiadomski, owners of the Eairy Cottage B&B and Tea Rooms, situated a couple of miles outside the village. Rufus was in a 1980's electro pop band who had a minor hit and appeared on Top Of The Pops, Rufus was the one who sang in a high pitched voice. Karel is a Polish plumber, and it is through a long deceased relative that they have come to own the cottage
Duggie Duggan, proprietor of Duggans Garage and Motor Showroon. Archetypical used car salesman who knows and uses every trick in the book.
Bruce and Sheila Qualtrough. Owners of the Big Farm, related to Finlo in a round about way. The farm still has its own milk round, customers still get milk in glass bottles, which visitors are quite taken by.
Mr Tooms, owner of the local builders and joiners Tooms and Graves(Decd) several folk have suggested that the company really should branch into the undertaking business, but so far Mr Tooms has resisted.
Pete The Post, local postie, knows everything about everyone. If you want the latest skeet, then just ask Pete
Puddles Callister, after spending most of his childhood in a state of incontinence, Puddles is now hurtling towards puberty and those awkward teenage years. His long suffering mother has a lot to contend with, as well as the constant washing. Puddles father has never been seen.
Miss Ethel Quine, founder and self-appointed president of 'Equine Rescue'. With hair resembling 00000 grade wire wool, she frequently sports a teardrop fedora, as well as a pince-nez. A formidable horsewoman, she achieved several wins in the Pulrose Gold Cup during the 1980's.
The Charmless Nurk (© Norman Stanley Fletcher), a time-served fitter and inveterate back-slider. Capable of scraping bearings to within three thou, but with no idea of socially-acceptable behaviour. On balance, a net asset, but only to the Motive Power department...
Miss Turnbull, a genuine tour de force.