Scoular, Lucy Janet Edith Interview
This is Caroline [Lowry] interviewing Lucy Scoular on March 9th 2021. Good morning, Lucy, and thanks very much for talking to us today; looking forward to hearing your story. So where did it all begin?
Good morning, Caroline; well, I have lived in this district most of my life. My family, the Douglas family, had a lot of land round here, and it had been all divided up, but my father had this block that we’re on at the moment, that my husband and I bought back from my brother. We always wanted to come back to Hawke’s Bay; we were in the Wairarapa for a little while.
Anyway, we live on this farm which is ‘bout twenty minutes from Hastings, and Poukawa is the district. It’s an amazing farming district. Years ago it was predominantly sheep and cattle, and the district was well known for very good early fat lambs because it gets so dry; and very good cattle come off it, too. We had about three really good orchards … apple and apricot orchards, but they’re no longer.
And now the farming scene has changed; there are quite a lot of lifestyle people ‘cause they love living here out of town. It’s really a very, very nice place to live, but it has changed. Years ago a train used to come and drop the mail off at the post office, it [they] used to throw it off. Mr Corliss was our postmaster, and we used to all have individual post boxes that we had a key to get at. And if we went early and we were lucky enough, Mr Corliss used to let us sort the mail. We loved going to the post office.
A few of the gentleman farmers used to come and congregate there … Mr Robson, Ralph Holden, my father, Dennis Douglas, and Mr Curran, our schoolmaster; he used to come down ‘cause he used to love racing too. And they used to congregate and talk horses for hours and hours. Anyway, after a while the paper got thrown off the bus, but of course now, no more of the post office. No more of the railway station either, which was great – our stock used to come on the railway, and then we used to drive them home. In fact I had a pony that came from Wairoa – it came on the train, and the next day we went to the Maraekakaho Sports with him – so the railway station’s gone too. We used to put stock on it as well, to go to the freezing works.
So that’s all gone, but we’ve still got our old hall that the Campbell family donated, and it gets used quite a bit, ‘specially for weddings and things now.
And the school – in my day there was only one room, but now there are three classrooms and a new hall, and about a hundred students; some are brought out from town. My days at the Poukawa School were fun ‘cause I used to be able to ride my pony, ‘Captain’; we used to gallop all the way, and we had little creek things we used to jump along the way. At the weekends we used to have pony club at Mr Collison’s, and every Monday morning we’d be galloping along and he’d go straight into Mr Collison’s thinking we still had pony club. Anyway, I can still remember my leather satchel on my back flapping, and I can still smell that leather smell of the satchel. [Chuckle] Those days were fun.
But after that I went on to Queenswood. Queenswood was a smallish … well, it was a small private boarding school. And Jill Holden – she’s Jill Hunter now – Jill Holden and I who are great friends, our parents used to take us, and take turns at the … ‘cause we were weekly boarders. Miss Hoby was our headmistress and she was lovely. She wore a long dress. We used to call her ‘Hobes in Robes’. She was so good. Anyway, those days were great at Queenswood. We made lots of friends from the people who came from up the Coast, Gisborne and Wairoa; and we were encouraged to have a little garden. We had these little gardens, little squares with bricks round the edge, and each person had a little garden. And we were encouraged to garden, sport, arts, hobbies, and everything. And we used to sleep in these dormitories which were open air, and they had a canvas rolled up blind that used to come down at nighttime. We didn’t seem to feel the cold in those days; I don’t think you do when you’re young. And that was great; it was a very easy transition from Queenswood on to Woodford – we were so lucky. And Woodford days were marvellous … I loved my Woodford days. We made great friends, we had a lot of fun; I don’t know how much we learnt, but we loved it, so that was great.
And tell me about Hastings in those days, when you were at Queenswood and you went to town with Mum and Dad.
Hastings was really good. We used to go to either de Pelichet McLeod’s or Murray Roberts to get things for the farm, or you could get your groceries there, put in nice big brown paper bags. And then we had Thompson’s Meat where we used to get our meat from, on the corner of Heretaunga Street and King Street. And across the road was Roach’s, and then down the road was Blackmore’s; then there was Blythe’s and Westerman’s. Westerman’s building’s still there of course. When you wanted your change from when you paid them, it was sent off up a … put in a thing and up it went up a pipe, and your change came back. That was always fun. Shops never changed in those days; we all just went to the same old shops – it was just brilliant.
And what about tearooms – did you have tearooms?
Yes, we used to go to the Farmer’s tearooms; that was always exciting, and we’d go and have lunch there; that was a big occasion we were taken to. I can remember I was in Hastings somehow; a few of us from Queenswood were in Hastings when it was the end of the war, and I can remember they said it was the end of the war and everybody in the street jumped up and down and shouted and clapped. It was just great.
When we were at Queenswood too, we used to go to the Central School baths for swimming; and then occasionally we used to go to St Matthew’s Church. Well, when we were so small it seemed to be … well, it is a big church, but it seemed to be enormous for us when we were so small. And Deaconess Henn used to take us for literature. Our running sports at Queenswood we used to have at Cornwall Park.
And tell me, what did you do in the holidays?
Well holidays were taken up with riding ponies and horses. [Of] course in those days with farming, we rode everywhere; no motorbikes or four-wheelers, and everybody rode. We spent a lot of time on horses; and gymkhanas and sports and the sports meetings all round Hawke’s Bay in those days, which were great. Old Mr Tom Brown used to take our ponies in the float. And then when there was a hunt at Awanui which was over the hill from us, we used to ride along the road to the huntsman at the kennels; and then we’d go over the hill with him. If our pony could jump a four-wire fence on the top of the hill, we were allowed to ride and go over with him with the hounds, and that was so exciting. But those hunting days were great; we saw a lot of lovely country in Hawke’s Bay; we were very spoilt with the country we had.
And how many people would’ve been at the hunt do you think, roughly?
Well they used to vary, you know … sixty, or we could like, get a hundred, no trouble at all. I think nowadays it’s not quite the same as it was, and what with electric fences and things … but in those days we could just go everywhere, we had sort of free country and … well, we’ve been so spoilt over there; we’ve lived in a very good era.
So at Woodford did you have any idea as to what you wanted to be when you grew up?
No, [chuckle] not really. There was always work at home on the farm, and so we were a bit spoilt like that. Dad had racehorses so we were always interested in all the racing. I used to go in with Dad to the track and see the horses work; Mr Jack Cameron trained for him – he was a very big man who had to go in a sweatbox when he came home from the track. And then when we’d been to the track we’d go round to the Camerons; Mrs Cameron would always cook us pork chops for breakfast [chuckles] which Dad used to take along. Mr Cameron was in the sweatbox … this great big box with just his head sticking out, [chuckles] and Dad and he would decide the programme for the horses, which was [chuckle] always rather amusing.
So he was in the sweatbox to lose weight for riding?
To lose weight, yep. Well he was huge. He was huge. Anyway, he was so nice, and Mrs Cameron, Lena, was a very nice woman. Anyway, yes, that was good.
But at Woodford we weren’t allowed out very often; sometimes three times a term. We were able to bring our friends out and that was always fun, where they’d come out and Mum would cook a big lunch … oh, you know, chicken … we were very lucky to have a chook. And then we’d hop on ponies and horses and go galloping over the place. So we made really good friends in our years at Woodford, and they’re still very good friends, too.
And was there anything in particular at Woodford that you liked – any subjects, or sporting things that you really loved?
Loved all the sport, the swimming and hockey and netball … basketball it was, in those days. Yes, we were encouraged to play as many sports as possible. Loved gymnastics which was always fun. And then my last year, 1954 at Woodford, a few of us went up to Hodge [House] … the old Hodge. We used to have our bicycles, and that was really good; you know, we learned cooking and home science and sewing and things. And then we’d ride our bikes flat to the boards downhill to school. We loved our time up at Hodge.
Getting back to the racing in those days, how many race meetings would there’ve been a year?
Well not as many as … I don’t think there’re as many as there are now, ‘cause we have about fourteen now; but I’m not too sure how many there were at all. [Of] course we did have hunt meetings, and we used to have matinee meetings which were great. They were early spring, and all the young two-year-olds used to come out – you’d call them trials nowadays, but it was quite an afternoon; everybody got all excited, and it’d be quite a crowd there to see the new two year olds coming out. And I remember we had one lovely filly called ‘Sugar Talk’, and she absolutely bolted in. And Charlie Cameron, who was Jack Cameron’s son who trained for us, he said, “Oh, and now we’ll turn her out.” And we were so disappointed that she was going to be turned out having won her matinee, but it was the right thing. And then she came back in to work; and there was a meeting at Hastings, and we thought, “Oh, she’s going to bolt in.” Well there was a horse came over from the west coast called ‘Furious Order’, and he licked her. [Chuckle] We weren’t so pleased about that.
But in 1954 I was very lucky. I got a telegram from my father, ‘cause parents couldn’t ring you at school, and he said, “You’ve been a very lucky girl, you’ve been given ‘Brookby Song’ to hunt. Well I was just so spoilt having him; I had about three or four years hunting him and he was absolutely magic. Anyway, he rather liked being in the front of the field, but that didn’t really matter because he was such a good jumper, and he’d just jump anything – clear it by miles. So I’ve been very, very spoilt over all that.
That sounds fantastic. So then you left school?
Left school, yes; went and worked in Christchurch; worked in an insurance office, and odds and ends. Went overseas, and that was good; and wasn’t there for very long, ten months; came home, and then I went to work for Dr Kurta in Hastings as a nurse/receptionist. I used to go in every day and work for him, and in those days he was just starting up. He was such a nice man. And when I used to get home my mother would say, “How many patients today?” And I’d say, “Five.” That’d be a big deal. [Chuckles] Look at it nowadays – it’s hard to get into a doctor, let alone … [Chuckles] But anyway, [of] course he built up his practice pretty quickly; he was a physician, and he was very good. So yes, and then …
So did you learn typing at school?
No. No, no. Longhand.
[Chuckles] Write out the accounts and, you know … yep. That was easy, yep. That was good.
Did they have some dances? What was the social life like?
Well we used to have lovely school dances in the holidays. We used to all dress up. We used to go up to Gisborne for dances, and they’d come down here.
They had the train then, didn’t they?
Yes. We used to go to Miss Ballantyne – Miss Ballantyne was brilliant. We used to go to her actually when we were at Queenswood too, we used to have ballet lessons from her. She had a place just along just near the railway station … near the railway line in Hastings … we used to go there. And we used to go there too, because we used to go to Hereworth for the Hereworth/Queenswood dance, and that was a great excitement – we’d get a lovely new dress for it. And I think the Hereworth boys enjoyed it so much because they used to get a good supper, and they used to fill their pockets with all these goodies from supper. [Chuckle] We used to do the Gay Gordons and all those lovely old dances – waltzes; I suppose they don’t do it now, but they were great times. Gisborne ones used to come down and stay, and we’d go up and stay with them. Gisborne were very hospitable – you’d go up for a few days and they wouldn’t let you go home for about two weeks; there was always something on there. I think they’re probably still much the same in Gisborne.
And what do you remember about the A&P [Agricultural & Pastoral] Shows as you were growing up?
Yes, we … yes, well the A&P Shows were a very big thing in our lives. We used to ride of course; and John and I used to have fat lambs, and we did well with our fat lambs because they were good early lambs.
Everybody went to the Show; when we were young we used to go to the Show and always have a new dress. And it used to be so hot … we used to get so sunburnt. Nowadays it’s not always hot at the Show, is it?
And we also showed cattle, and we put a bull in once which was a bit of a disaster. [Chuckle]
They wanted us to put it in the parade. But anyway, he didn’t really behave very well, so [chuckles] we sent him home on the truck the day before the parade. [Chuckle] We didn’t want to get caught with him at the show.
What sort of breed of cattle did you have?
That was Hereford. Yes, and the fat lambs were Southdown. [Of] course Shows have changed too, but anyway, they were great days … used to have a big … you know, parents would do the lunch, and it was quite a thing of the time.
Bacon and egg pie …
Bacon and egg pies, yep. And then of course, when we were at Woodford we weren’t allowed out much, but we all wanted to ride so that we could get a day off earlier from school to get to the Show. And so … I think they probably still do that at school, I’m not too sure.
And so when did you meet your lovely husband?
I knew you were going to ask me that. [Laughter]
So you were working for the doctor in Hastings?
Yes, and my cousin, Anne Parsons and her husband, Gus, introduced us. That would be in about 1956, yes. And then I went overseas. Anyway, we took our time.
And John was local, was he?
Well, originally local; his father was an ear, nose, throat specialist in Napier. But he wanted to go farming, so he bought a farm in the Wairarapa. So when we got married we had a few years in the Wairarapa and our son, Andy, was born down there. And that was great, and then we came back here. Yes, and Sally, our daughter, was born here in Hastings.
Gosh, so you’ve actually been here really, all your life?
On and off for a long time. We’ve been very lucky.
So Lucy, let’s go back a bit, and have a look at some of these wonderful photos that you have; for example, the Poukawa School – there’s a photo here from 1932.
[Going through photos one by one]
Yes; it was just one building of course, and then there was a little shed behind which was for the bicycles. And Mr Curran of course was our headmaster. We had a seventy-fifth reunion – when was that? Oh, I can’t remember when we had it – that’s not much help. Anyway, … but the school has been added onto, and it’s now three classrooms and it’s got a hall as well and quite a lot of teachers. And it’s going extremely well, which is really encouraging. A bus-load come out from town, so it’s good – it keeps the school going.
So the community’s grown? Or do you feel like people, because they’ve come out from Hastings, has [have] made it grow as much as anything?
The community’s grown because of lifestyle blocks, where once upon a time it was just family places. Now we’ve got, you know, a bigger community, which is really good; people love living out here and having …
When would that’ve started, all that subdivision and lifestyle blocks?
Oooh … twenty years ago?
So not long ago?
Not that long ago … oh, I suppose a while ago, really. But that’s sort of grown, hasn’t it? All round the country really, and in the district. Yes.
So are they five-acre blocks or ten-acre blocks?
Ten-acre blocks, yes. Yeah.
And … oh! The Queen’s visit in 1953.
Well, she just actually went in the train past [laughter] us. [Chuckle] We didn’t actually get a very good look at her. No. And they had traffic control. Yes, it was rather nice, wasn’t it? You could see us; it was down by the hall.
Well that would’ve been quite exciting?
That was a big thing for Poukawa.
Yes, and you all dressed up, no doubt?
I think we did [chuckles] – I’m not too sure.
Did you get one of her famous waves?
Yes, we got one of her famous waves. [Laughter] Definitely.
Snow at Poukawa in 1951 …
It snowed. And I can remember I came home from school – it was in August, the August holidays – and I’d had a pony that’d just been broken in. And I can remember riding it round and the snow kept getting caught in her feet, there was so much of it. That was … yes, 1951.
And how many snow events have you had since then, do you think?
Well we get the odd one; not a lot down here, but we get quite often one or two drifts up on the top of our hills, but not very many down round the house, no.
You were mentioning earlier about the orchard that was on your property particularly – what would you do with all the fruit?
Well I suppose they sold it at you know, the Apple & Pear Board, or Turners or [&] Growers and things. But yes, they were mainly apples … bit of everything, actually. And we could go and buy fruit from them, which was marvellous. And there was an apricot orchard. We used to Malcolm Road ‘up the Orchard Road’; we found it hard changing to the name Malcolm Road because it was always the Orchard Road because of all the orchards up there. Yes, they grew really good fruit.
No doubt your mother had lots of things to be able to preserve?
Yes, she did a lot of preserving of peaches and pears and everything. And then of course we used to grow a lot of tomatoes, and we still grow tomatoes. And I’m now passing on to my grandchildren my mother’s tomato sauce and tomato relish recipes, so that’s good that that’s keeping going. I don’t know that they do so much bottling nowadays, but I still bottle a bit which is always good.
Well I’d love you to share with us if you wouldn’t mind, that amazing-sounding coleslaw recipe.
Oh – this is the recipe from when we went to Woodford, and we were up at Hodge. I still use a lot of the Hodge recipes. But it was called Red Bunny & Coleslaw, and it was Wattie’s tomato soup before you put any water in it – just as it is, with cheese. And I can’t completely remember the recipe but I’ve got it there; you heat that up and then you pour it over the cold cut up cabbage coleslaw. And it was a delicious lunch dish – in fact I must make it soon, now I’ve remembered about it. But that was one of our Woodford ones. 23.50
And speaking of Wattie’s, did Wattie’s start when you were at Queenswood?
They did. And Dad had one of the first paddocks of peas; anyway, I think they were rather like bullets because there wasn’t [chuckle] any irrigation; but he did have one of the first paddocks of peas, yes.
And sold those to Wattie’s?
Yeah, Mr Wattie, yep. And of course he was friendly with Mr Wattie, because Mr Wattie had racehorses.
Of course. So that’s James Wattie?
Yeah, that was James Wattie.
And tell me, did you get any whiffs of anything over the school fence?
We used to get a lot of whiffs of tomato sauce [laughter] from Wattie’s very close by, yes.
So I wonder when Wattie’s started in Hastings?
I’m not too sure.
Was it there when you got to Queenswood?
Yes, it was, yes.
That would’ve been 1940-something you were there?
Yes – I’m not too sure. Yeah – when I was at Queenswood, yes, in the late 1940s.
There was a dance school, Miss Ballantyne’s?
Miss Ballantyne’s, yes – Jean Ballantyne. And we all went to learn to dance with Miss Ballantyne. The Hereworth boys used to learn to dance too, for our big once a year dance; and it was the Queenswood dance one year, and it was the Hereworth one the next year; take turns, and our parents would come and watch us at the dance.
And so was it girls down one end and boys down the other type-thing?
Yep, definitely. Yep, yep, but they were always very nice and polite, the Hereworth boys, because they had to dance with us. Nobody was left sitting on the wall in a seat with nobody to dance with. Everybody got up and danced.
What sort of dances were they?
Well there was Gay Gordons; the waltzes, all those lovely old ones. And then if we were keen on a boy, they asked us for the last dance – that was so exciting! [Laughter]
And of course then we used to write to each other too, which was good. We used to write to each other when we were at Woodford, too. After we had lunch we used to go to our room for half and hour and the prefects would hand out our mail; and we were always waiting at the door to see if we had a letter from one of the young men from the … [Chuckles] I think the prefects used to hold them back to tease us a bit.
And when you were at Woodford – talking about the dances – what school would you be having dances with?
Well, Wanganui Collegiate used to have a dance; Christ’s College had a dance; Nelson College. We used to have a mixture of boys from schools; they’d get asked to dances. Napier Boys’ [High School], and …
And Lindisfarne, was that around?
Well that started when we were at Woodford. Yes – it was quite a new school … new Presbyterian school.
And your dresses, did they get made?
Yes, we used to get dresses made, and that was always fun.
So you’d buy the fabric from ..?
From Roach’s or Westerman’s or somewhere, and get them made. And Mrs Robinson used to do dressmaking, and make some nice dresses for me … yes. [Of] course then we went on, and she used to make our bridesmaid dresses. And In Gisborne they had a very good woman that made them up there. But it was always fun seeing what everybody was coming out in in these different dresses. And Horrocks dresses were what we used to have – a new Horrocks dress for the Show.
What’s a Horrocks dress?
Well it was a pretty cotton dress; usually sort of made of pretty cotton, and florally usually, yes; and we used to like to have a new Horrocks dress for the Show.
Were they sort of puffed sleeves?
Yeah, puffed sleeves; nice full skirts, and not too short. [Chuckle]
No … for the rides …
… the sideshows, probably.
Yes, yes – that’s right. [Chuckle]
And what sort of sideshows did they have at the Show in those days?
Well, when we were little they used to have those ponies going up and down on [a] roundabout, and …
Merry-go-rounds, and the wheel …
Yeah, Ferris wheel?
Ferris wheel, and … what was that? Those sit in it on chains … [Chair-O-Plane]
Oh, goodness! Did you like that ride?
Yep, loved that! [Laughter] Loved all that.
Sort of the swings on chains …
… that went terribly fast as I remember.
Yes, the faster the better. [Laughter]
So that was the dressmaking. And did you spend hours in Roach’s or Westerman’s looking through patterns with your mother for dresses?
Yes we did. Yes, we did have the old patterns … yes, we did.
What were the shoes like that went with all the dresses?
Well, they were very sensible flat shoes …
… but you know, the colour of your dress, usually.
Right. And would they be dyed?
Well you could get them dyed, yes.
Yeah – sometimes they had material, didn’t they?
Yes, they did.
Well that’s good for your dancing so you didn’t have to wear too high a shoe, or ..?
Certainly no high heels, no. No. Very sensible, we were in those days.
And did you wear hats when you went to the Show?
Yes, we did.
And where would you get those from?
Roach’s or Westerman’s … Blythe’s. Yep. ‘Cause it was so hot, usually.
Oh, we talked about the mail sorting, didn’t we?
The post office.
And what year were you married, Lucy?
We were married in 1963.
And you married here in Hawke’s Bay?
Yes, up at school at Woodford, and then the Farmers’.
The old Farmer’s tearooms …
The Farmers’ Tearooms.
That was a famous venue, wasn’t it?
How many were at your wedding?
A hundred and fifty, I think, I’m not too sure.
And how many in your wedding party?
Well just … Gus Parsons was our best man, and Wendy Falloon – Wendy Williams that was – bridesmaid. All the others were married or having families, most of my friends, so …
Did you have any flower girls?
Yes, we did; we had my brother’s daughter, Derryn, she was a flower girl.
And what sort of time of day did you have your ..?
Well it was … ‘bout two o’clock in the afternoon, I remember. Yes, and it was a very cold day, July 27th … yes. And Peter Holden, married to my cousin Shirley, lived at Tiko, [Tikokino] and he was cleaning his car and he said it was freezing cold up there. Yes.
Did you have dancing at your wedding?
And what sort of music was it, and who ..?
Ooh, nice old-fashioned music that we could all dance to.
And it was a band?
I don’t know … must’ve been. Must’ve been; I don’t think it went on very long … not terribly late, our wedding. Yeah.
Where would you go on honeymoon in those days?
We went to Taupō, to Kinloch … Jonathon and Gonda Avery’s bach, which was great. And of course we loved fishing, and we used to spend a lot of time fishing.
And in those days, how long did it take to get to Taupō?
Well the road wasn’t too bad in those days, much better than … my mother always used to say when they went to Taupō, people would say, “And how many punctures did you have?” [Chuckle] But we didn’t have punctures really.
So it wasn’t gravel when you ..?
Yes, parts of it were gravel, yes. But not at the time of our wedding; but before that when we used to go to Taupō and it was so hot, you used to wind your window down in your car, and if you saw a car coming the other way you’d quickly, “Windows up!” [Chuckle] Because of the dust. [Of] Course the dust in Taupō was shocking too, you know, because … all pumice roads.
And how long did it take to get to Taupō?
‘Bout three hours, yeah.
Well, it’s halved that now, hasn’t it?
Gosh, the road’s so good now, yes. Very easy. And in Taupō in the summer – we used to go up for quite a while, but they used to have these terrible fires. And our parents joined us too, the men fighting the fires.
‘Cause of the heat?
‘Cause of … I don’t know; bush, you know – scrubby fires around Taupō.
And did you ever go to the beaches around Hawke’s Bay when you were growing up?
Yes, we … yes; not a lot.
You didn’t take your ponies there?
No, not really, no.
Oh, we were going to talk about milk …
Oh, that’s right … the school milk.
The school milk that used to arrive off the train, and was left down at the railway line and the young boys used to go down and pick it up; and by the time we got it it was disgusting – I haven’t been too keen on milk ever since.
Was it sour?
All sort of curdled. [Of] course in our day on the farm we used to milk a cow, and we had a man working on the farm and we used to put the jug on the kitchen table with a mat over the top of it; and he used to come and get it, lift up the window, get the jug, fill it up with the milk and leave it there. But when John and I came back to the farm, the first thing we did – we sent the cow up to the top of the hill with the mob of cows. It was much easier [chuckles] … much easier buying the milk in town [chuckles] for the little amount we used.
Yeah, I can imagine.
But farming has changed here. We did have Romneys and Southdown over them – lovely fat lambs. And we had our own Angus cattle which were always good. John always used to kill a mutton, and we used to live on mutton mainly, which was great – we didn’t have little bits of lamb or lamb racks or anything like that.
And of course veges out of the garden, no doubt?
Veges out of the garden, which we still do. In fact it’s really good, our family are keen on their vegetable gardens and gardening, which I think is great for the young people.
And of course they’ve got community gardens now too, which is encouraging …
Which is so good, yeah. And now farming has changed to really more buying in stock and fattening. Because of the dryness, we’ve learnt over the years to have stock that if it gets too dry you can get rid of, rather than try and keep them on and supplementary feed them and things. It’s much better having things that you can sell, put in the sale yards or fatten and kill and get rid of, rather than go through all that terrible time. We’ve been through droughts, and it’s very hard on people.
I think what’s amazing, Lucy, is the fact that you’ve lived here most of your life; it’s very precious to meet somebody that has spent their whole lives in one district …
… and you know, it means you have a great handle on everything that’s going on in the community.
Yes, well we’ve just loved living here. Not far from town, and while we could still farm … well we don’t farm so much, but John does help Andy on the farm. He’s still got his two-wheeler which he shoots off on. Managed to make him wear a hard hat; taken ninety years, but [chuckle] he does wear it.
John Scoular: Andy’s just told me off because I had it on back to front. [Laughter]
Lucy: But anyway, we don’t interfere at all in the farm, but it’s lovely – Andy lets us know what’s happening, what’s going on, what he’s doing when he’s buying sheep and cattle. He buys lambs in the autumn … late summer, autumn; buys Friesian bulls that he fattens all year round – not so mad on the look of them, I’d rather have a nice Angus or Hereford. But you see, they make money, and that’s the way farming’s gone, and it’s the same in the district. Andy does lease out his land to the Brownriggs … Brownrigg family … and they put squash in every year, and so it’s good for Andy to get cashflow that way; and then it goes back into new grass. We always hope that the Brownriggs get a good crop so it’s good for them and it’s good for Andy, and so it’s sort of a different way of farming.
But the family’s still here in the district, so that’s amazing. And thank you so much, Lucy, for your insights on Poukawa, and your own life. It’s been a real pleasure and on behalf of the Knowledge Bank, thank you very much for your time.
That’s been a great pleasure; I hope I haven’t waffled on too long …
Not at all.
… and changed subjects. [Chuckle]
Not at all.
Original digital file
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Format of the originalAudio recording
Interviewer: Caroline Lowry