I’ve written quite a few times about milkmen and my memories of having milk delivered in the past… I guess if you buy your milk from a shop then maybe you don’t ever think about milk deliveries. I’m old enough to remember when the milkman came round with a horse pulling his small cart. I must have seen the cart thousands of times, but I only have a hazy recollection of it; it was cream coloured and had open sides so the milk man could step in and out, and with a curved covering. The milk must have been in the bit at the back behind his little cabin, but I don’t really remember because I think I – and probably every other child was more interested in the horse.
The milkman came round early every morning, probably about six o’cclock I guess. My dad was an early riser and sometimes milkie had enough time to sit in the kitchen and have a cup of tea with dad. Milkie came along later – maybe going back to the dairy, maybe back to the stable, maybe collecting money… and we would cluster round the horse, and if we were very lucky we were allowed to feed him a dry crust, holding our hands out as flat as possible… I held my hand out so flat my fingers bent back and the bread kept falling off. Some lucky boys helped the milkman and they would get in trouble for being late to school… it seemed very glamorous to be able to ride on the milk cart.
Ever since we’ve lived here in Uphill we have had our milk delivered, and for the first few years it was from Pinta Pete who had been my parents milkman for twenty odd years before then. Now our milkman is Paul – but I’ve never heard him called Pinta Paul! We have our milk delivered in glass bottles, and always have, even before the plastic-free movement began. It always seemed a waste to me to throw away plastic bottles in the rubbish, rather than washing out the glass ones to be picked up by Milkie.
The milk company deliver other things too, and or quite a while we have had locally produced free-range eggs and butter delivered. Recently we have decided to have other things delivered too – it is more expensive than going to a supermarket, but the point is we save petrol by not going. I’ve stared having veg boxes from them and have been amazed and delighted by the quality. The milk company also realise they have strong ‘green’ credentials because of their glass returnable bottles, and now have a whole array of eco-friendly products and I’ve bought dish cloths, scrubbers and various other things – and been very pleased again with the quality.
If you feel tempted to have milk delivered to your door (I think it tastes better out of a glass bottle!) then here is the milk company I use: