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18th Jun 2019

The Top Gear guide to Lancashire Slang with Paddy McGuinness, Freddie Flintoff and Chris Harris


Top Gear is back

BBC Two stalwart Top Gear is back with three brand new hosts. Chris Evans is gone. Matt LeBlanc has said bon voyage. Now is the time of Freddie Flintoff, Paddy McGuinness and returning host Chris Harris.

The new series debuted at 8pm on Sunday and saw the boys take on an epic quest across Ethiopia driving approximations of their first cars, along with a Ferrari v McClaren supercar test.

JOE sat down with the trio for a game of Lancashire Slang, which saw northerners Flintoff and McGuinness trying to explain well-known Lancashire phrases to confused southerner Harris.

Have you ever had a Wigan Kebab? What on earth is a ginnel? Paddy and Freddie explain it all, with a healthy dose of chair tipping and height jokes thrown in for good measure.

“What food source do they love in Wigan?” asks Flintoff.

“I don’t know. I thought they were famous for ram-raiding,” Harris replies.

McGuinness raises the tantalising prospect of ‘putting wood in the hole’, to which a fairly blank looking Harris suggests, “Put a log on the fire?” No dice.

“We have gas fires in the north now,” McGuinness retorts. “Indoor toilets as well,” Flintoff adds.

“You told me that your children take a block of peat to school to put in the school furnace to keep them warm in winter,” Harris fires back.

“Yeah, that is true,” McGuinness says. “But that’s just me.”

So what does ‘put wood in the hole’ mean? No spoilers, but it means ‘close the door.’

“Why didn’t you say ‘close the door’ then, you moron?” Harris enquires.

“Because we’re giving you Lancashire phrases here. This is the game you see,” McGuinness replies.

A little insider fact from this shoot: after the cameras stopped rolling, McGuinness tipped Harris’ chair back, who then grabbed at Flintoff’s to steady himself, who in turn threw his coffee all over our lovely yellow backdrop.

It ain’t all glitz and glam.