This is a story set in the north Midlands of England and is written using an English vocabulary. Where I know of differing meanings for my North American readers then I have explained them. If I miss any please feel free to ask.
Football in this story is, of course, Associated Football (from which the word soccer derives) although I'd love to have it explained how the American version can be described as football when hardly any part of the game uses the foot and a ball should be a sphere.
The Potteries — The area of Stoke-on-Trent famed for its production of pottery included names like Wedgwood, Doulton, Minton, Spode and many others. http://www.thepotteries.org
Throwing — the art of throwing clay onto a Potter's Wheel and building up a 'pot' http://www.wikihow.com/Throw-a-Pot
North Staffordshire oatcakes are a local delicacy, though their delicious flavour doesn't seem to have spread too far. Plan a visit to almost any Stokie living away and a request for a dozen or so oatcakes is almost immediate. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oatcake