What’s in a name Cuadrilla?

Sometimes company names can be mildly amusing and appropriate – think “Grate Expectations” for a fireplace shop. Sometimes they can be unintentionally funny – like the now legendary “S.T.D. Contractors” service company in Pontiac near Detroit.

Sometimes though people’s choices of company name can be unexpectedly revealing. Yes, we are talking about our friends Cuadrilla.

You may not know that a Cuadrilla is a Spanish word for a matador’s team of assistants, including picadors and banderilleros who goad and weaken a fighting bull before the matador comes in and takes over for the flashy kill. One bullfighting aficionado suggests that the banderilleros are often “failed” bullfighters.


We can only praise Cuadrilla for having chosen a name which so accurately reflects their role here in Lancashire.

They are here as pathfinders. They are working at softening up opposition in the community just like the cuadrilla weaken the bull. They are doing this by bestowing largesse on youth groups, promising spurious jobs, and insinuating, without any evidence and against the generally accepted informed opinion, that our gas prices will behave as they have done in America.

It was alleged in the FT in January that this Cuadrilla were in talks with Centrica to sell them a major stake in the business. What does seem certain is that this tiny group of banderilleros is not in a position to kill the local bull without bringing in the help of a major matador like Centrica.

What they (and we) must not forget is that the bull sometimes fights back and the guys in flashy jackets sometimes have to retire hurt!

The bull fights back

P.S. We were told today that in Brazil you’d never name a company Cuadrilla because over there the word means “a bunch of bandits”. We can’t speak for the accuracy of that so we make no further comment. 🙂

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