Covesea Dairy Shop Assistant by Mary More

Mary worked at the Covesea Dairy from 1949. She was 16 at the time. Covesea Farm dairy was based at Queen Street in Lossiemouth. It sold milk in glass bottles, eggs and vegetables. She scrubbed the concrete floor with a pail, water, a scrubbing brush and a bar of hard soap- Fairy Soap. She did this in between serving customers even on a Sunday (though most people went to church).  She worked Monday to Saturday and every second Sunday morning 9.00 a.m.-1 p.m. At the dairy there were office girls who also worked on a Sunday.

Scotch pancake and Scottish crumpet: Photograph taken 6 February 2006 by User:Dave souza. Any re-use to contain this licence notice and to attribute the work to User:Dave souza at Wikipedia.From Monday to Saturday her first job was to make pancakes on a large griddle. She made the recipe with pints of milk, eggs, self-raising flour. The special ingredients was danish fat. Monday morning- The Ladies Guild came in for a smaller size of pancakes which they picked up on Monday morning. They were ordered at the weekend. Local customers bought pancakes. Made a couple of batches for a couple of hours each morning. Bread came from Austin the bakers under a glass case. Everybody brought their own basket or bag. In the late 40s and early 50s eggs were rationed. Nearly had a job at the Egg Packing plant in Elgin but got the dairy job.

Horse and carts did three rounds delivering the milk around the town. They collected the money from the customers. Other people came in to pay as “shop customers”. They also sold vegetables, potatoes (tatties), carrots, turnips (neeps) and cauliflowers. Fruit was sold in season. Had an orchard @ Covesea. Crab apples were in demand for crab apple jelly. There were blackberries in Findrassie. Lots of people came from Glasgow to Hopeman. They were called Broons if they came from Glasgow. Lots of tourists had holiday homes in Lossiemouth including the Wills Tobacco Family. Some people took in summer visitors.

She changed her accent for the English. There was a navy base in HMS Fulmar (now RAF Lossiemouth).

Spynie Hospital
Her sister got scarlet fever in 1939 at the age of 4. She went to stay at Spynie Hospital. The house was sprayed including the living and the bedroom. You couldn’t see her except to bring her to the window and you could wave at each other. The doctor’s visits cost a guinea but the hosptial was free. Their doctor was Dr Brander. Her sister remembers eating rice pudding.

Memory contributed by Mary More at the Duffus Fair 2012

Additional Information

Marion Ingram has written about the origins of the Hopeman Gala and the role of the Broons its creation. Read her memory here.


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