Housework

Sam Dyson, Full Transcript

In his interview with W.R. Mitchell, Mr. Dyson recalls buying his first smallholding, Buckley Farm, Stanbury, in 1939. With the help of his wife Mrs. Peggy Dyson (PD) and a friend and neighbour Adrian Bancroft (AB), he recounts living and working on that smallholding and the other farms he has bought and worked in the Stanbury area, including Ponden Hall Farm. With a background in farming for over 50 years they relate many interesting stories, and often with humour. The interview is noteworthy for its poetic regional dialect, comical turn of phrase, its gusto and articulacy.

Lawrence Rukin, Full Transcript

Aspects of life around the village of Keld as told by Laurie Rukin from Park Lodge Farm, describing, in particular, Keld (Dales) Singers; his father’s post round; Susan Peacock, the Tan Hill Inn and his own family history. There are brief mentions of work at the pit and entertainment in the Dale.

Lawrence Rukin

Laurie Rukin farmed all his life at Park Lodge Farm in Keld, where his grandfather and father had also been farmers. Laurie’s son later went on to farm there, making it four generations - since 1901 - of Rukins at Park Lodge. 

Laurie’s grandfather, James Rukin, whose nickname was Bob-Jim, had started work as a miner at Tan Hill Pit when he was nine years old. He earned a shilling a week and in wintertime Laurie said it was dark when he left home in the morning and dark when he got back. The only time his grandfather saw daylight at that time of year was on a Sunday.

Annie Mason, Full Transcript Part 2

Anne Margaret Mason (AM) describes to W.R. Mitchell (WRM) life on an Upper Wensleydale farm in the first half of the 20th century, describing in particular haymaking, mowing, hay sledges, droving, cheesemaking, pig and geese keeping, and numerous references throughout the tape to the keeping and use of horses on a farm.  

Annie Mason, Full Transcript Part 1

Anne Margaret Mason (AM) describes life on an Upper Wensleydale farm in the first half of the 20th century, describing in particular haymaking, outdoor milking, sheep management, lambing time, servants, washday, cheese-making and baking.

Bill Alderson, Full Transcript

W.R. Mitchell and Bill Alderson of Angram, Swaledale, looking at photographs and discussing Tan Hill and Susan Peacock (the landlady), her family and funeral. Bill Alderson describes how Susan looked, dressed and spoke. Brief mentions of Harry Hopeful/Wilfred Pickle show, customers at the pub and betting on trotting horses.

Annie Mason, Audio Clip

In this clip Anne Margaret Mason (AM) tells Bill Mitchell (WRM) about meal times at haymaking.

Annie Mason

Mrs Mason of Burtersett, born Ann Margaret Pratt, recalls how one Richard Metcalfe gained his nickname ‘Dickie Vocator’, attempting to raise a glass to Queen Victoria after an evening’s celebrations and mispronouncing Victoria as ‘Vocator’! Her grandfather, another Richard Metcalfe, managed the quarries at Burtersett. She recalls that many a town in Lancashire was paved with cobbles from Burtersett. Her detailed recollections of lambing, hay making, and domestic duties such as bannock-baking and cheese-making are captivating and bring a bygone age back to life.

Bill Alderson, Audio Clip

In this clip Bill Alderson (BA) describes to W.R. Mitchell (WRM) how Susan Peacock, the landlady at Tan Hill, was frightened of nobody, and how the loaded gun she kept behind the bar at the Inn was put to good use on one occasion.

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