J.B.Banks & Son Limited - Traditional Hardware Shop and FREE Heritage Museum of Working Life

Market Place, Cockermouth CA13 9NH The


ironmonger J.B.Banks & Son Limited


Monday to Saturday 9.00am to 5.00pm

J.B. Banks is not your typical hardware shop!

There’s something about summer that brings out the best in people! Whether it’s the warm weather, the longer days, the events that bring people together, or a combination of all three. One thing that unites all this is a Barbecue!

Our most recent barbecue was set in picturesque Gilcrux. The dogs chased each other on the lawn, whilst we mingled between supervising the barbecue, drinking cold beer and cuddling grandchildren. All the food was served on crisp blue and white enamelware.

This beautiful dinnerware has seen a huge comeback in recent years. Its durability, traditional and classic design makes it as popular, from trendy gin bars, to student pubs, to family homes. We see people coming on a camping holiday purchasing plates and mugs, so they can sit and eat around the campfire. A whole set was once bought as a wedding present - I’m sure they’ll still be using it on their Golden Wedding Anniversary!

At J. B. Banks, we sell a huge range of enamelware; from small plates that are perfect to make a plate pie, to huge oval roasters. I use mine to make lamb meatballs with olives, the roaster is perfect to fry the meatballs then let them simmer on the hob. Once the foods been devoured then it’s extremely easy to clean.

A common thing we hear when people see the enamelware is: “Oh, my mother had one of those!” They remind people of past family meals and often that’s a reason people choose enamelware, because they know the quality and how versatile it is. Hopefully, the grandchildren that are being cuddled will associate it with past family barbecues. How they drank mocktails from heavy mugs, ate a summer pudding that had been prepared in a pudding basin and picked up colourful kebabs from a once white bake pan.

~A WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE~ Mr. Heather and his form group - 9DH

I came to Cockermouth School through a Worldwide Teacher Exchange Programme. It matched teachers from England, Australia, Canada and the USA and then organises their prospective exchange with the host school and education authorities. Exchanges can range from three to twelve months and those in the field of Design and Technology are not so easy, as the core subjects are few and far between but thankfully Mr. Morton had requested Australia and our subjects aligned.

My school in Australia is similar in practices but it was a challenge to adjust to the different computer systems utilised at Cockermouth School. I have also adapted to wearing a tie and long trousers, which is something very different to the open collar shirt and shorts I am accustomed to at Whitebridge High School!

The students have been a pleasure to teach. They have been very accommodating and have accepted my Australian humour, which has allowed us to be able to work successfully together in class. Meeting their families at Parents’

Evenings occasionally lead to brief conversations regarding what I had experienced as a Teacher in Cockermouth and my adventures and travels during my time here.

I have been lucky enough to enjoy the spoils of the area. Walking the fells, I really enjoyed a great winter with the abundance of snow and walking

up Red Pike in the thick of it. It was a first for me to have the school close due to snow - something that will never happen where I come from in Australia. The number of people I have met walking the fells is amazing; always friendly and polite and interested in my story. I have been fortunate and haven’t had any incidents which may have caused me to be rescued by work colleagues who volunteer for Cockermouth Mountain Rescue Team - yet!

I would like to thank the staff, students, families of Cockermouth School and the community of Cockermouth who have supported me throughout the year and made this a wonderful experience I will never forget.

Don Heather

Bothel and Kirkland

Jenny Wren welcomed Anna Hogg, a physiotherapist from Torpenhow who works in Carlisle. Anna specialises in jaw and pelvic floor exercises. The majority of ladies practised pelvic floor exercise after childbirth but rarely continue with them. The older one gets, the more likelihood they will be needed! Prolapse and incontinence can be improved with regular exercising these essential muscles.

Exercise can help prevent heart disease, dementia, diabetes and

cancer. Keeping muscles strong helps co-ordination, flexibility and posture. Anna’s talk made us all think about our approach to exercise and how important fitness is to our lives. Philippa Greggan thanked Anna for her thought-provoking talk.

Jenny confirmed the August summer outing to the Helena Thompson Museum. Items from the County News were discussed and Doreen Storey won the competition – ‘a flower’. At the 5th September meeting, Stephen Wilson will talk about the science of Liquorice Allsorts! Visitors welcome.


Mr. Heather on Scarfell

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