Andy’s Flippant Guide to Northern Lingo

Hello and welcome to this short but informative guide on “Northern Lingo” or verba ab aquilone as the romans would never say.

The aim of this text to help ease you around the tricky and treacherous paths and through the lexicographical nightmare that is “The North”

This guide is designed for any professional that has, through no fault of their own, found themselves in regular, and sadly necessary contact with, a northerner. The Oxford Book of Made Up Facts describes a northerner as “any individual born, raised, and chiefly present in locations north of the Watford Gap (the geographical feature, not the Service Station)”.

With this in mind, we aim to provide the ultimate reference manual for those lost souls tragically trapped on a call or somehow inexplicably engaged in chat with Persons of a Northern Persuasion.

So sit back, relax, and enjoy our flippant guide to Words From The North.



A frequently heard expression, mainly used as an informal hail to a fellow northerner, but also often used as an expression of surprise

Usage : “Ay-up, our kid”

Translation : “Hello brother / sister, how are you today?”



A casual greeting. Never reply to this as if in answer to a query, despite the intonation and clearly defined questioning tone, it is not a question. The only acceptable reply to this is to repeat the word back, but with a slightly different inflection. A slight nod is also acceptable

Usage : “Alright?”

Translation : “Hello, I trust you are well and simply require confirmation of this fact”



A word often used by the children of the north, it endows the user with magical properties and allows them to have first refusal upon any item

Usage : “Bagsy ‘aving the front seat”

Translation : “I would like very much to the be person sat in the front of the chair, if that suits all other persons present”


Bits and Bats

This is the northern equivalent of its better known cousin “Bits and Bobs” – refers chiefly to an assortment of miscellaneous items or activities

Usage : “I’ll come down the pub in a bit, I have a few bits and bats to do first”

Translation : “I will endeavour to meet you in the pub later, once I have finished off all my prearranged chores”



Lacking a sufficient amount of money with which to sustain oneself

Usage : “Nah mate, I can’t come, I’m proper brassic”

Translation : “I would love to attend today’s scheduled activities, alas, I do not possess sufficient coinage”



An endearing term for a mischievous child that fails to heed your instructions when asked to do something

Usage : “Ay up, Buggerlugs, I asked you to budge up”

Translation : “Come now, child, I have repeatedly asked you to move along the couch so we may both sit with some degree of comfort”



A state of high-excitement or immense happiness

Usage: “I am proper buzzin’, our kid”

Translation : “Yes brother, I am quite enamoured with the current situation”



Similar to Buzzin’ , but denotes a broader sense of happiness and well being

Usage : “Our kid always wanted to get run over by a train, and when it finally happened he was chuffed to bits”

Translation : To be honest, this doesn’t really translate well, very few people are happy to be struck by a fast moving object!


Chuffin’ / Chuffin’ ‘Eck

Chuffin’ is a largely catch-all prefix or, depending on the situation, a preposition or conjunction. (Northerners like to get their money’s worth) Chuffin’ ‘Eck, however is an exclamation of surprise / dismay / anger mainly used as a euphemism for the more socially unacceptable / blasphemous exclamations

Usage : “Chuffin’ ‘eck, that chuffin’ guy doesn’t half waffle on about chuffin’ words”

Translation : ” You know, I feel at this point the individual is labouring his point somewhat”


“Does it eckers, like”

An exclamation of disbelief, or profound disagreement at the current subject matter

Usage : “Andy told you he can write guides?! Can he eckers, like!”

Translation: “I don’t believe the information Andy relayed to be strictly accurate”



An unacceptable level of effort, or less commonly the verb to engage in useless activities

Usage: “I mean I would pop down the shops, but it’s a proper faff, init”

Translation : “At this moment, I feel it would be largely counter-productive to travel to the supermarket”



A person, or group of people, found to be possessing an unnatural level of luck or good fortune

Usage : “did you see that chuffin’ goal?! It was proper Jammy!”

Translation : ” I cannot believe how fortuitous that player was for managing to get that ball in the net”



A period of prolonged, and often satisfying, unconsciousness

Usage : “I am well knackered, I need a kip”

Translation : ” I do believe the level of effort I have made is deserving of a period of rejuvenating slumber”


“Leg it”

The recommended directive exclaimed to others in haste when the situation requires people to be elsewhere

Usage: “Man, it’s the Dibble – leg it!”

Translation : “I think we should evacuate the immediate area, post haste!”



A generic catch-all for all manner of ailments and maladies, speaks to the efficiency with which the northerner approaches life

Usage : “Dave’s not in today, he’s got the lurgy”

Translation : ” I am really sorry to be the bearer of ill news, but David is seriously ill”



An object, place, or situation that is particularly satisfactory, also a positive affirmation response

Usage : “ahh man, that’s Mint”

Translation : “Ooh, you know, i quite like that”



Used both as a verb and a noun, either as the act of unrelenting social engagement or the description of an odious or “faff-like” task

Usage : “it’s nowt but Mither, non-stop”

Translation : ” I am finding this all a bit much, if i am being brutally honest”


Our Kid

Somehow, inexplicably, this does not refer to one’s children, but instead denotes a reference to the northerner’s siblings

Usage : “‘ey, our kid, do one. sharpish”

Translation : “Excuse me, brother / sister, I strongly suggest you leave with some degree of enthusiasm”



A situation, place, or thing that is currently in a sub-optimal state, The polar opposite of Mint

Usage : “I tried me best, but it was chuffin’ pants”

Translation : “Alas, despite my best efforts it just wasn’t that good in the end”



A person of potentially dubious moral fibre

Usage : “that kid at number 5 is a proper Rum’un”

Translation : “You know, we really should keep our eye on that boy from the down the street, he seems capable of ill will”



The word used when the user wishes to convey a small amount of gratitude for something that wasn’t worth multi-syllabic levels of effort

Usage : “Ta, that will do”

Translation : “Thank you, I find this transaction satisfactory”



A word used to signal farewell to a fellow northerner

Usage : “Tarra, chuck”

Translation : ” I bid you farewell, and will no doubt see you again soon”



A person with questionable mental capacity, or at best, dubious decision making skills

Usage: ” come on, you big wassock, I haven’t got all day”

Translation : ” for the love of god, child, do try to keep up”


Yay Big

A term often accompanied by a vague, nondescript hand gesture, used to convey an estimation of size

Usage : “I haven’t seen a rat like that since I were yay big”

Translation “I was but a young child the last time I came across vermin of such size”



A mainly unspecified but often implied to be long period of time

Usage : “Ay-up pal, I haven’t seen you in yonks!”

Translation : “well hello there, my good man, it has been a simply inordinate amount of time since we last spoke”







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