Home > Memories > Recent Posts from FB Page – Butchers – Duck n Peas

Recent Posts from FB Page – Butchers – Duck n Peas

Hope you all had a good Christmas. Our day was 39 degrees Celsius.

The first school i attended was St Josephs in Ushaw. I recall one day one of the kids took me to the butchers shop down town. From memory we took the first street left off the main street and went into the back of the butchers premises. This was around 1959/60 and that was when butchers really were butchers.

At the back of the shop there was a holding pen where livestock was delivered and the animals were slaughtered right there. My friend had been there before and the old guy working out the back knew his family. The old guy had pots boiling in there and when i asked what was in one of them he took a hook and lifted a whole head up out of the pot. It scared me half to death as it was half cooked and all the skin was gone and exposed all the teeth and the eyes were bulging. Another pot was rendering down the hooves to make glue. Other pots were cooking round balls which I now know to be fagots also known as duck and eaten with peas and often referred to as duck & peas. Another version of Scotland’s Haggis which is made mainly of offal and the rubbishy bits of animals and then wrapped in the belly skin and cooked with a variety of spices.

I recall eating this at the Durham produce markets. Only just realised recently what i was eating; LOL, anyone still eat this ?

It seems to have remained a tradition which started in the war depression days.
  • Ushaw Moor Memories Great bit of History Ron, wow could do with some of that heat over here, at 39 deg, I guess u wouldn’t mind sending some over

    I think the butchers u are talking about would have been Lawsons, he had premises behind his shop, where animals were butchered. My grandfather Gilbert Ayre kept pigs up at the allotments near Ushaw Terrace amongst other livestock, some of the pigs were supplied by him to Lawsons, at least that’s what my Gran always said.

    Colin Lawson was the owner at the time I remember, always remember he had a false leg as was knocked over while serving many years ago.

    Great memories, many thanks for sharing, how times have changed.

    PS you may have known my Mother , Margaret Ayre and Gran Bessie Ayre was West.
  • Ron Nightingale Yes the butchers shop was called Lawsons and i now remember the guy in the serving part of the shop had a wooden leg. There was also an alotment at Broompark that bred pigs and it was the only alotment on the right of the start of the footpath that led to the railway bridge and the beck. Micheal Saunders (one of the older kids) worked in there so i am guessing it was his dads, but i am thinking there was another guy often came from Ushaw that also kept pigs. The name Ayre and West ring a bell but if they were from Ushaw and not Broompark i am probably remembering the names from kids at school. I left St Josephs and attended the prodestant school in ushaw so i got to know most of the ushaw kids but my memory is vague with names now. I have exausted all avenues of trying to find old pictures of the old houses at Broompark and dont even know when they were pulled down. Hard to believe i can not find any information on the durham Council sites.? I have printed out a screen shot from google earth of the current Broompark and intend to draw the old houses into it using the front remaining street as a guide to the sizes. I can only remember the 2 streets i lived in there which was grant street and then Albert st. Maybe if i draft up this map and upload it someone might be able to add the other street names. Or if someone could point me in the right direction to get this info i would be grateful as its not easy from being here in Australia.
  • Ushaw Moor Memories Hi Ron , thanks for your comments, it is a shame there is not more out there on Broompark History. With regard to the mapping have u tried Durham County Council’s Geographic Information System (GIS) is an interactive mapping service, which allows you to look back at historic maps of a particular area from present day to 1800’s. Simply zoom the area you require eg Broompark area by dragging a box around it,or usingthe search link, then choose an era from the drop-down menu, I used 1938-1950 to get early view of Broompark showing colliery houses. You can use the tools at the bottom to zoom in and pan around the map http://gis.durham.gov.uk/website/interMAP/viewer.htm
Categories: Memories Tags: , ,
  1. Dave Clarkson
    December 29, 2012 at 5:06 pm

    Yeah, I remember Mr Lawson’s butchers and the slaughter house at the rear of the shop. There was also another butchers further down Station road with a slaughter house. Freddie Parkinson’s (young Freddie used to fly model aircraft with small petrol engines which were “Wire” controlled in the Recreation ground above the football and cricket pitch.)
    I can recall a young cow escaping from the slaughter house and running straight down the road into the football ground. It was like a scene from “Benny Hill” watching the butchers and Billy Ayre the grounds-man chasing the beast around the field for a couple of hours. This was made even funnier by one of the lads pretending to be a commentator from “Match of The day” describing the movements down the wing etc.
    Ps Freddie Parkinson had a model aircraft which was a German “STUCKER” dive bomber that he used to fly over the lads in the “REC” and bomb them by dropping marbles which were promptly gathered up and thrown back at the model aircraft.

  2. Olga Bradley nee Jones.
    December 29, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    I remember Colin Lawson and his wife Jill. My Mam, Flo Jones used to work for him in the back shop downstairs, she used to clean. He also had a shop at Esh winning on the front street. I used to go along sometimes to help my mam with the cleaning.
    Colin did have a false leg. I believe his ex wife Jill is still alive or she was up till a few years ago. She used to come to the dance at Bearpark club.

  3. bev fish
    December 29, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    this brings back happy thoughts. i worked for colin from being 14 first in the back shop making burgers then in the front shop once dave left. Me and Catherine Winn was Mason certainly worked hard for our £1 an hour but we had some great times there….I left when I was 21 to join the prison service and left my mam to run the shop. Colin had 2 shops the other in Spennymoor and a brilliant buisness supplying pubs and restaurants throughout county durham. Its sad to think all his hard work was wasted in the end and the buisnesses were sold for buttons. Colin died recently from cancer but Im pleased he finally married Joan as she stood by him through everything….He certainly taught me what hard work was!!!!!

  4. Percy Clarke
    December 31, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    I well recall the terrible accident, circa 1958, which happened just outside our school at Crossgate Moor at which time I was not aware that Colin Lawson was involved. Interesting to read what ‘bev fish’ said about Colin’s hard work ethic because each time I saw him from that date, having come to terms with his appalling injuries, he was hard at work either delivering or working in his shop, no sitting on his backside relying on help from others..Literally there is no man that I admire more, I believe that Ushaw Moor has its very own Douglas Bader, a man who’s family can be very proud.

  5. January 1, 2013 at 11:48 am

    Was the other that kept pigs at Ushaw Moor called Fred Stuckey. He kept them in a field that ran along the top of Arthur Street and Dale Terrace. He used to boil the mash up in a big black hut that stood on the left of the gate that led into the allotments. He also kept hens. I remember walking to St. Jospehs school from New Brancepeth and passing the back of Lawsons shop where the animals for slaughter were creating mayhem in the back shop. It was Colins father who ran the business then. I always admired Colin for the way he pulled himself back after his horrific accident. Part of my generations past disappeared as I believe the premises are now a pizza shop. O how times have changed! Happy New Year Everyone.

    Brian Mc.

  6. January 1, 2013 at 11:56 am

    Correction. The hut stood to the right of the gates that led into the allotments. Fred Parkinson also had a fantastic shop down Station Road on the block above the Big Club. The whole of the shop was tiled and theer were sheeps heads and cattle heads complete with horns hanging on the walls. In my childhood there were three butchers in Ushaw Moor including the Co-op Butchers (Normas Ridley) but very little meat due to wartime rationing. There is a fantastic smell of a piece of beef cooking in the oven for dinner. We are very forunate today to have all the food we want.

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