Friday, 3 September 2010

Llanteg Milk Stands - A thing of the past?

Reconstructed Milk Stand at Sower Carr
Milk Stands were where milk, in churns, would be placed outside farms, ready for collection by horse drawn carts and latterly motorised ones.
They were placed directly on the roadside, not set back, so that the transfer of the heavy churns was made easier.
© Copyright Bob Jenkins and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

The milk churn was a standard size, older galvanised iron conical type held 17 gallons, the cylindrical type with the mushroom shaped lid introduced in the 1930s (shown above) held ten gallons.  Each churn carried a brass plate near the top to identify the owning company and when full it would have a white paper label (tied to the handle on the lid of the conical type and to the side handle of the cylindrical type), which was used for accounting purposes by the dairy.

These relics of bygone days are now either decaying, covered in undergrowth or have been removed altogether.
Once a common site on almost all dairy farms, where full churns were collected and empty ones left behind - now replaced by large bulk tankers that collect the milk.

Milk Stands Around Llanteg


Middleton 1964

Middleton 2010

This specimen at Middleton is well cared for, being slightly built up from its original height by the look of it – the dark aperture in the side was a foot hole. There used to be a ramp up from the farmyard side – and two churns would be pushed up on a specially made handcart with two wheels.

Middleton 1960s

The top red oval shows what was called the 'cooling shed'.  This was where milk was strained into the churns and then put to stand in a pit of cold water set into the floor - probably only large enough to hold four churns.
The lower red oval shows milk churns on the stand.

Summerbrook Farm

Summerbrook 2008

Summerbrook 2010

A nice example at Summerbrook Farm - with even an old churn on top for decoration.  Jean Mortimer tells us this would also have been used by Ledgerland and Freddie Oriel of Garness.

The Moors

The Moors approx 2000

The Moors 2010 - you would hardly know it was there now

One in the hedge outside The Moors, now overgrown - the picture with the daffodils was taken around 2000.

Rose Cottage etc - Situated Opposite Sea Breeze


Opposite Sea Breeze - 2010

Opposite Sea Breeze - 2012

One opposite the Old School (Sea Breeze), completely overgrown – would  have catered for Rose Cottage and Garness Mill area.

Mountain Farm

Old Mountain Farm Entrance - 2008

Old milk churn stand, Mountain Farm.
Under this mass of ivy lurks the old milk churn stand for Mountain Farm.  It was on the side of the busy A477 until the road was moved in the 1980s, now the farm has another entrance.

Will keep an eye out for others – or if you know of any let us know.

1 comment:

  1. Requiem for a milk stand

    Milk stand standing by the side of the road
    Unremarked as a disused chapel, though
    Plain as plain, bearing no signs of the sacred
    Yet how the churns rang out in the rimey air
    Of a dark dawn, turning the silence to singing

    Daisy and crumplehorn hightail down the lane
    Bumpfff, the low moan of the pump, the tickety
    Tack, techno pop beat of the clusters suck
    Drawing the white stuff from tight uddered cows
    Munching oats in the echoey parlour

    Oh milk of human kindness, how did you
    Become another commodity traded
    On the global market like oil or steel
    Family farm, disused like the milk stand
    Still standing by the side of the road
    Plain as plain, bearing no sign of the sacred
    Ghost churns ringing