Milk­man Keith de­liv­ers fi­nal bot­tle of his ca­reer

Leek Post & Times - - LETTERS TO THE EDITOR - By Les­lie Jack­son les­lie.jack­son@reach­

AFTER a life­time of ded­i­ca­tion to the dairy trade, milk­man Keith Sim­cock has de­cided to hang up his wa­ter­proofs and boots.

Keith first de­liv­ered milk and helped out on a dairy farm be­tween 1963 and 1968 while still at school.

The milk was farm-bot­tled by lo­cal dairy farmer Mr Massey of Calver­hay Farm, Blythe Bridge.

After work­ing in other in­dus­tries Keith started his own busi­ness in 1982.

Dur­ing his time he served as chair­man of the North Staffs branch of the Na­tional Dairy­men’s As­so­ci­a­tion, be­came Mid­land’s Milk­man of the Year three times and suc­ceeded Coun­try Lodge Dairy known across the UK dairy in­dus­try, even though he stayed lo­cal to his roots.

He was also a rep­re­sen­ta­tive on the na­tional Bot­tled Milk Buyer coun­cil, which met in Lon­don ev­ery month – but be­cause of his sup­port for the small dairy­man against the large dairies, the meet­ings were ar­ranged on days he could not at­tend!

Keith, of Blythe Bridge, was also re­spon­si­ble for bring­ing the ‘dairy bear’ to visit lo­cal schools to pro­mote milk drink­ing with the aid of lo­cal city and county coun­cil­lor Kath Banks, who took the bear to pri­mary schools in the Blythe Bridge and Chea­dle ar­eas. Keith said: “After this the trade as­so­ci­a­tion of­fered me the ser­vices of Ben the Milk­man who ap­peared on a tele­vi­sion ad­vert where he danced around milk bot­tles and went to see aun­tie Ethel.

“At that time, Sam Plank of Ra­dio Stoke had a lis­tener called Ethel, who lived in a care home.

“So he ar­ranged an af­ter­noon tea with ‘Aun­tie’ Ethel at the St Clare Church Hall, Meir Park. This was well at­tended by lo­cal res­i­dents.

“After this he ar­ranged an­nual horse race nights at the lo­cal com­mu­nity hall to raise funds for the air am­bu­lance.”

Keith has also served as a mem­ber of the lo­cal crime pre­ven­tion panel, but most of all he has en­joyed do­ing his job, meet­ing and help­ing lo­cal peo­ple.

He ended his ca­reer de­liv­er­ing farm­bot­tled fresh milk from Wheat Bros of Chea­dle who will take over his de­liv­ery round in the Blythe Bridge and Meir Park ar­eas.

Keith said: “I am look­ing for­ward to a rest. I can now look at the rain and snow from the com­fort of my own home, know­ing I haven’t got to go out in it. I have re­ally en­joyed my rounds. It is just the weather that got to me dur­ing the last win­ter. I have re­ceived many won­der­ful gifts and cards from peo­ple. I will miss the chat­ter with the many peo­ple I have met.”

Keith hands his round books to Michael Wheat of Wheat Bros as they wish each other all the best with cham­pagne flutes of milk.

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