Town pride is on show in the USA

John Brown from Hartlepool, fifth from right with beard and cap, with American friend Mike Jennette, wearing a Tall Ships t-shirt, second from left.
John Brown from Hartlepool, fifth from right with beard and cap, with American friend Mike Jennette, wearing a Tall Ships t-shirt, second from left.

A PROUD Poolie visiting America was given a surprise send off when his hosts made a home-made Proud to be a Poolie poster.

John Brown, from Hartlepool ,spent two weeks in the town of Pegram in Tennessee when he met up with an American friend who worked at Heerema with him.

John, a paint sprayer with the fabrication company, planned to take one of the Mail’s Proud to be a Poolie posters with him on the trip but forgot in the last minute rush.

But after telling his American hosts of the Mail’s feature, where residents promote the town when on their travels, they came up with their own.

John, 66, of Nesbyt Road in King Oswy, Hartlepool, said: “I was explaining that when people go on holiday they take a poster or a copy of the Hartlepool Mail, but I left it too late.

“When I was out there someone said ‘is it right that you guys hung a monkey?’

“I said it was just a legend. Then on my last weekend we went out for a get together at a local bar.

“When I went outside they had this poster saying Proud to be a Poolie and a monkey hanger which they had made themselves.”

Among the well wishers was the local mayor Eugene Evans, seen on the far right of the photo.

John, married to Jean, 63, went out to visit his friend Mike Jennette.

He was one of a group of American workers who John got to know when they worked at Heerema in the town several years ago.

John, a dad of one and granddad of two, added: “They came over to do a job and I started talking to them and go out for a pint.

“I’ve been going out there for nearly seven years to see the different guys around the States.”

Our thanks go to them for backing our Poolie campaign.

Why not take your chance to show your passion about your town?

All we want you to do is pick up a copy of our poster from the Hartlepool Mail reception or download it from our website at It contains the slogan Proud To Be A Poolie.

Take it with you whenever you go on holiday or go away for a short break.

Have your photograph taken with the poster and send it to us so that we can publish it – and show that you have helped to spread the Hartlepool word.

Send your photos to the Mail newsdesk, Hartlepool Mail, New Clarence House, Wesley Square, Hartlepool, TS24 8BX, or log on to

Our Proud To Be A Poolie campaign has so far reached:

AUSTRALIA: Melbourne; Laurieton, New South Wales; Sydney; Queensland; Darwin; Broome; Nitmiluk National Park, Katherine Gorge in the Northern Territory, Australia.

AUSTRIA: Wagrain.

BRAZIL: Sugar Loaf Mountain


CANADA: Langley City; British Columbia, Cochrane, Calgary.

CARIBBEAN: Cayman Islands; Grenada; British Virgin Islands.

CHINA: Hong Kong.

CUBA: Guardalavaca.

CYPRUS: Paphos.



EGYPT: Sharm el Sheik.

FRANCE: La Rochelle; Cherbourg; Valloire; Paris..

HOLLAND: Amsterdam; Heiloo.

IRELAND: Waterford.

ITALY: St Peter’s Square, Rome; Pisa.

LAOS: Nam Yone Village.

MALDIVES: Kuredu Island.


MOROCCO: Agadir.

NEW ZEALAND: Whangamata Bay, North Island; Hamilton, Waikato.


PORTUGAL: Funchia, Vilamoura.

RUSSIA: St Petgersburg.

SCOTLAND: Gretna Green, Oban


SOUTH AFRICA: Witpoortjie Falls.

SPAIN: Benidorm; Bilbao; La Coruna; Marbella, Canary Islands; Lanzarote, Canary Islands; Belamadena; Torremolinos; Mijas Bullring; Gibraltar.

TUNISIA: Port el Kantaoui

TURKEY: Icmeler; Istanbul; Marmaris.

UK: Bakewell, Derbyshire; Crimdon; London; Derby; Hartlepool Marina; Summerhill, Hartlepool; Northamptonshire; Tonbridge, Kent; Alrewas, Staffordshire, Cadbury’s World, Birmingham, Goathland, North Yorkshire, where Heartbeat TV show is set; Manchester Arena; Liverpool; Billingham; Cragwood, Ramshaw;

USA: Tombstone, Arizona; Las Vegas; New York City; Gracelands, Memphis; The Alamo, San Antonio, Texas, Disney Land; Twin Falls, West Virginia; West Potomac Park, Washington; Pegram in Tennessee.

UAE: Dubai.