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Doorstep memories

(47 Posts)
Niucla97 Sun 03-Feb-19 10:39:44

Reading all the - My Mother said- made me think of times at home. All the traders etc that came to the door- Bread man, Fish man, butcher, milk man, pop man, insurance collector, coal man, paraffin man and so many more. The bread man brought groceries, the fish man came another day with vegetables. We also had the 'fluke' man with freshly caught fluke from the River Dee.

I can remember hating Tuesdays- the fish man came on a Tuesday and my Mum always bought cod steaks and baked them in the oven. They had what seemed like a massive bone in the middle with three prongs!

We also had the turban man who only came round every few months selling handkerchiefs, scarves, braces. The gypsy lady with her pegs and Nottingham lace. The offer of having your fortune told.

Of course when the pop man came the bottles carried a deposit so they were recycled. Just like the milk bottles were. My mother and Grand mother always had a shopping basket.

I was talking with my GD the other day about the tramps (probably now called the homeless) We lived in a village in a rural area a couple of miles away from a brick works. Periodically a tramp used to come round and sit on the bank and sing. He travelled around the area sleeping at the brick works . My father always took him a mug of tea, sandwiches and cake. He was a very pleasant well educated man so interesting to talk to.

Happy Days!

Squiffy Sun 03-Feb-19 11:06:49

I remember the diminutive, un-muscley looking man who delivered coal. He used to run up all 27 steps to leave the sacks by the coal shed!

I also remember sitting on the front door step waiting for my DM to return home from work. By the time she'd arrived, I would have eaten half the fresh loaf of bread that had been delivered! blush Oh, the joy of that fresh crust!!

EllanVannin Sun 03-Feb-19 11:44:39

I remember my mum telling the bin men off for denting the bin as she couldn't get the lid back on properly, letting all the flies in through the gap. Horrible old bins !

I do remember the " stores horse " outside with fresh bread, milk and veg. Dad used to give it an apple in the hope that the horse would leave a deposit for the garden.

The rag and bone man for the window leathers and donkey-stones----don't dare tread on the step after mum had done it.

Gas and electric men to empty the meters of pennies ( gas ) and shillings ( electric )

Finding cobs of coal in the gutter when the coal wagon took a sharp corner. That was a bonus before he was due to deliver.

Sitting with a toasting fork which only took seconds to do in the red of the fire.

Hotpot cooking in the oven all day---pickled cabbage at the ready.

Those big stone bottles of dandelion and burdock and ginger beer.

The smell of lavender wax polish.

Teetime Sun 03-Feb-19 11:47:52

The knife man used to come round every so often with his grinding wheel on a trolley- it made a screeching noise and threw off sparks.
The fish lady came round on Sundays with an open barrow of fish and my parents bought shrimps and winkles for Sunday tea.
The salad lady came in the summer again with an open barrow which she pushed.
This was in the 50s in the East End of London.

Chewbacca Sun 03-Feb-19 12:03:56

I remember my grandmother having milk delivered by a milkman who had a horse and cart. On baking days, she bought a jug of sour milk because they made lighter and better scones.

annodomini Sun 03-Feb-19 12:15:29

I have fond memories of the 'ingin johnnies' - the Breton men on bikes who came annually with long strings of onions. They seemed quite exotic to us in those days.
It doesn't seem so very long since I last saw a knife sharpener, but it must be at least 40 years! I can cope with kitchen knives, but would love to know where I can get dressmaking scissors sharpened.

jusnoneed Sun 03-Feb-19 12:37:23

My Grandparents lived in a then small village, sadly over built in now, and I spent every possible day of all my school holidays with them. The mobile shop (Co-op) came around, the butcher, and the highlight was the mobile library! My Nan and myself avid readers. Once in a while a lorry from a hardware store in Glastonbury came around and it had everything from pegs to paraffin piled into/onto it. Bits and pieces hung from the sides (H and Safety would have 40 fits now lol) and doormats etc up on top.

EllanVannin Sun 03-Feb-19 13:07:24

Once upon a time I used to wish to get away from that " idyllic " way of life. Now I'm wishing it would return.
There's no pleasing, is there ?

Auntieflo Sun 03-Feb-19 13:59:08

Annodomini, we also used to get a knife sharpener here. He would take knives, and go and sit in the park/ green, just across the road. We moved here in 1968, so it was about that time, and haven’t seen any for years and years now. I also remember the Co-op baker and milkmen delivering, and knowing mum’s divi number off by heart. Fond memories.

BBbevan Sun 03-Feb-19 14:12:55

We had Beryl the Milk, who had a horse and cart. I thought it was a Roman chariot. The milk was in a churn at the back and ladelled into a jug. Also Pop, who had a very dirty ice cream van , but delicious icecream . And Mr. Portlock, who was always bare chested in the summer, to my Mums horror, but had excellent fruit and veg on his cart. Not to forget the Pig man who collected our veg peelings etc for his Pig

mcem Sun 03-Feb-19 14:36:14

I have found that cutting sandpaper with scissors sharpens them. Maybe experiment with less valued scissors first and see if you like the results!

Jalima1108 Sun 03-Feb-19 14:36:35

Children ran more errands in those days - I had to take the Co-op order along (written in a book) and bring back some items, the rest was delivered.

There was 'beer at home means Davenports' delivered for Dad and Corona pop for us (not much, we had to have Corporation pop most of the time).

The rag and bone man with his horse and cart . The knife sharpener (DH does ours but I think a local butcher will sharpen them for you Anno).
The tramps looking for the vicarage (next door) and mum saying 'never turn away a gypsy!'

The icecream van - we never see one now

Jalima1108 Sun 03-Feb-19 14:38:52

Now we get callers wanting to clean our drive, chop down our tree, clean out the gutters etc.

LullyDully Sun 03-Feb-19 14:51:55

My Welsh speaking granny used to let the Breton onion sellers sleep in the stable. She ran a pub in the Welsh valleys. She used to call them the "shinny unyuns" ( or so it sounded to me as a child.)

She used to talk to them in Welsh and they spoke Breton, they both understood one another.

sassenach512 Sun 03-Feb-19 15:23:11

The rag man used to come round with his horse and cart and for a few old clothes, mam would get a dozen wooden dolly pegs and I could get a sheet of those pretend tattoos you had to wet and stick onto your hand or a few marbles for the boys.

As well as the baker, fruit and veg, and fish men, we sometimes got a man with a suitcase full of brushes, dusters, utensils, detergents etc. My mam always bought something, I think she felt sorry for him.

Then there was the Prudential insurance man each week and the rent man.

Direct debits and standing orders put all of those people out of work, who used to collect round the doors I'm thinking sad

Twin2 Sun 03-Feb-19 15:31:48

We had the Corana man. We had a bottle of lemonade and dandelion and burdock a week. We could have a small glass and a biscuit each day for 11’ses You got money back on the bottle.

sodapop Sun 03-Feb-19 15:38:08

I remember being told to wait in for the coal man and make sure he didn't leave a lot of slack. The baker who brought hot rolls round in his van on a Sunday, delicious.
The Corona man brought treats dandelion and burdock, cream soda and cherryade.
Not forgetting the Kleeneze man as well.

grannysue05 Sun 03-Feb-19 15:46:29

Sodapop I remember the Kleeneze Man also.
He came round every few months and my Mum used to buy six yellow dusters as she then received a free tin of pure wax polish.

KatyK Thu 07-Feb-19 10:18:08

I remember Geoff the bread man. He came to the door once a week. It's was so exciting to see his wicket basket full of cakes. I remember the coal man with his horse and cart. The most exciting thing was the rag man who would give us a live chick in return for rags. Can you imagine that these days?

sodapop Thu 07-Feb-19 10:57:39

It was a goldfish from the rag & bone man for us KatyK
We had a tallyman coming round getting us to buy goods on HP I once got a vacuum cleaner and my husband was very cross ( polite version)

KatyK Thu 07-Feb-19 11:09:56

sodapop Yes our ragman started giving goldfish after the chicks. Those poor chicks. We had no idea how to look after them. They never lasted more than a day or two.

wildswan16 Thu 07-Feb-19 12:12:24

We loved to hear the rag & bone man calling - you could hear him from streets away. We'd run out to watch him go past and loved it if he stopped to collect things as we could pat his horse.

Bread delivery daily, milk daily, grocery order once a week, butcher order once a week. Fish van once a week.

Oh, and bin men that actually walked up your garden path, picked up the bin and brought it back - every week!

travelsafar Thu 07-Feb-19 12:39:13

My best memory of 'doorsteps' is me and my best friend Marion who lived next door sitting on the step playing with our Bunty cut out dolls and swapping the clothes you would get each week on the back of the comic.We had a biscuit tin each which we kept our treasures in.Happy Daysmile

Jalima1108 Thu 07-Feb-19 14:12:43

And, of course, the paper boy who delivered not just the newspapers but Chick's Own, Girl and the School Friend

grannyactivist Thu 07-Feb-19 14:55:39

Paper boy; ran 'n' bone man; fishmonger; milkman; coalman; gypsies selling 'lucky' heather who would 'curse' you if you didn't buy; the meter readers who would empty the gas, electric and TV (yes, our TV was metered); the rent man (from whom we often had to hide behind the settee); Mr. Lock from the Prudential; the Walls ice cream man who had a coolbox on his bike; the man who collected the football pools; the immunisation ambulance (couldn't believe my luck when my sister got an injection and I was given the dolly mixtures for being such a good helper and keeping her calm) - and the bread man who literally saved the lives of me and my siblings when my mum left us (we actually were suffering from malnutrition when she came back); my dad barely paid him for almost two years, but he carried on delivering. It was only when I was an adult that I realised he probably paid himself for the bread he left us.