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TITLE
Interview with Duncan and Elsie Cormack about winter fun in Wick
EXTERNAL ID
PC_CF_002
PLACENAME
Wick
DISTRICT
Eastern Caithness
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
CAITHNESS: Wick
CREATOR
Duncan & Elsie Cormack
SOURCE
Am Baile and War Detectives
ASSET ID
2504
KEYWORDS
World War 2
World War II
Second World War
2nd World War
sledging
audio

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Duncan and Elsie Cormack remember winter fun in Wick in the 1940s.

Mrs C: We, in the snow time, we went on wur sledges. There again, we could do a lot of sledging. It seems now there was more snow but it's not so much that there was more snow. Your life has been given over to cars, your roads have been given over to cars, so, I mean, if there's any snow at all, along they come and they shake sand and they shake grit and everything, and that spoils it; that's no use for anything, but it's the cars that's important. And we, there wasn't so many cars, you see, there was horse and carts and ye could always get out o' the way o' a horse and cart - you hoped. I came from Wick; I played, I sledged in Wick. So I don't know if ye know Wick at all but there's a big long brae that goes, you know, like the Sh- what we call the Shore Road an' it goes down and when you come down to the bottom o' it, you're at the harbour. You see, so you come down, an' you have to make a quick turn till your left wi' your sledge, you see, and go along then. It didna always work out that way though, did it?

[Laughter]

Mrs C: So, the fishermen said to themselves, 'Oh, that little monkeys is goin' to be on that road,' so they didn't park, they didn't moor their boats at that corner of the water. They kept them away, 'cause it was very hard if you came down on a sledge an' you went in, hit the board and then you went intill a boat. You widna like to do that, wid you? So, it was much better just to go in the water; there was always somebody there that fished you out again.

Mr C: Oh aye.

Mrs C: You did get a soaking and your mother no doubt gave you a row, but that was the way it went. But we'd lots o' fun wi' that.

Mr C: You see, most times the sledge was overloaded, of course. Ye'd have a sledge maybe about three feet long, ye'd have six on it - six, boys and girls, all heaped on it.

Mrs C: It was made from wood, it was - Plastic wasn't in it or anything like that. It was wood.

Mr C: It was wooden, you see, and they had steel runners on them and then the man in the workshop made these steel runners.

Mrs C: You went to th' blacksmith's -

Mr C: Blacksmith.

Mrs C: - and they welded, you know, they gave you this, welded this on.

Mr C: Onto your wooden sledge.

Mrs C: An' boy, could they shine, you know, if you got them -

Mr C: We've still got one at home here in Thurso.

Mrs C: We hiv one. I wid take it along till the school and show you if you were interested.

Mr C: A sledge. What is it?

Mrs C: But, a sledge, an old-fashioned sledge. What?

Mr C: How many years is it old? It's -

Mrs C: Well, I widna like to say. It's definitely an-ti-queue. Do you know an-ti-queue? Well, it's definitely an-ti-queue. It was before my day. I mean, it was passed on to me, so -

Mr C: Aye, it must be seventy, eighty, ninety years old.

Mrs C: And our family used it. Oh aye, it's -

Mr C: Aye.

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Interview with Duncan and Elsie Cormack about winter fun in Wick

CAITHNESS: Wick

World War 2; World War II; Second World War; 2nd World War; sledging; audio

Am Baile and War Detectives

War Detectives (interviews)

Duncan and Elsie Cormack remember winter fun in Wick in the 1940s.<br /> <br /> Mrs C: We, in the snow time, we went on wur sledges. There again, we could do a lot of sledging. It seems now there was more snow but it's not so much that there was more snow. Your life has been given over to cars, your roads have been given over to cars, so, I mean, if there's any snow at all, along they come and they shake sand and they shake grit and everything, and that spoils it; that's no use for anything, but it's the cars that's important. And we, there wasn't so many cars, you see, there was horse and carts and ye could always get out o' the way o' a horse and cart - you hoped. I came from Wick; I played, I sledged in Wick. So I don't know if ye know Wick at all but there's a big long brae that goes, you know, like the Sh- what we call the Shore Road an' it goes down and when you come down to the bottom o' it, you're at the harbour. You see, so you come down, an' you have to make a quick turn till your left wi' your sledge, you see, and go along then. It didna always work out that way though, did it?<br /> <br /> [Laughter]<br /> <br /> Mrs C: So, the fishermen said to themselves, 'Oh, that little monkeys is goin' to be on that road,' so they didn't park, they didn't moor their boats at that corner of the water. They kept them away, 'cause it was very hard if you came down on a sledge an' you went in, hit the board and then you went intill a boat. You widna like to do that, wid you? So, it was much better just to go in the water; there was always somebody there that fished you out again.<br /> <br /> Mr C: Oh aye.<br /> <br /> Mrs C: You did get a soaking and your mother no doubt gave you a row, but that was the way it went. But we'd lots o' fun wi' that.<br /> <br /> Mr C: You see, most times the sledge was overloaded, of course. Ye'd have a sledge maybe about three feet long, ye'd have six on it - six, boys and girls, all heaped on it.<br /> <br /> Mrs C: It was made from wood, it was - Plastic wasn't in it or anything like that. It was wood. <br /> <br /> Mr C: It was wooden, you see, and they had steel runners on them and then the man in the workshop made these steel runners.<br /> <br /> Mrs C: You went to th' blacksmith's -<br /> <br /> Mr C: Blacksmith.<br /> <br /> Mrs C: - and they welded, you know, they gave you this, welded this on. <br /> <br /> Mr C: Onto your wooden sledge. <br /> <br /> Mrs C: An' boy, could they shine, you know, if you got them -<br /> <br /> Mr C: We've still got one at home here in Thurso. <br /> <br /> Mrs C: We hiv one. I wid take it along till the school and show you if you were interested. <br /> <br /> Mr C: A sledge. What is it?<br /> <br /> Mrs C: But, a sledge, an old-fashioned sledge. What?<br /> <br /> Mr C: How many years is it old? It's -<br /> <br /> Mrs C: Well, I widna like to say. It's definitely an-ti-queue. Do you know an-ti-queue? Well, it's definitely an-ti-queue. It was before my day. I mean, it was passed on to me, so -<br /> <br /> Mr C: Aye, it must be seventy, eighty, ninety years old.<br /> <br /> Mrs C: And our family used it. Oh aye, it's -<br /> <br /> Mr C: Aye.