Military Tribunal

From the Herts Advertiser

 20th May, 1916



St Albans

Milkmen called up from Heath Farm, Bernards Heath, St Albans


Heath Farm Dairy Co., Ltd., St Albans wanted total exemption for Arthur George Tyler, aged 31, No. ??, Sandridge Road, milk deliverer; Richard J Sweeting, aged 31, No. 2 New Dalton Street, and George A Arnold, aged 36?, No. ?? Sandridge Road, milk carrier. Mr Reynolds, representing the firm, wrote in the application that the deprivation of milk would be a national danger. Seven of the firm's carriers had already joined the army.

 Mr Beal: Here you are: "Where are you going to, my pretty maid? I'm going a milking, sir, she said" - (hear, hear).

Mr Reynolds said they supplied 3,500 houses - or more.

The Mayor: Have you tried to get girls?

Mr Reynolds referred to the strenuous nature of the work, the heavy weights to carry, the early hours, and the necessity of being out in all weathers.

Mr Beal: Haven't you seen girls in St Albans doing this work? Mr Reynolds: I have seen one.

Mr Beal: If one can do it, more can.

Mr Reynolds: But we can't get them. 

In reply to Mr Mayer, Mr Reynolds said there was great difficulty in getting lads. They had replaced seven men with seven boys.

 Mr Arthur Martin, of the same firm, supported the application, and said he was quite certain that girls would not be able to do the work. They had eight men in 1914, but they had taken over another business, and taken over four men with it.

During further discussion, members of the tribunal remarked that if people could not get milk delivered they would have to go and fetch it.

Mr Reynolds and Mr Martin were recalled, and informed the Tribunal of the earnings of the men and boys. They said they got all the boys they could get. As to customers fetching their milk, the difficulty of such an arrangement in some districts was pointed out.

Councillor Edwards: You offer your customers a penny a quart reduction and they'll come and fetch it.

The three applications were refused

Mr Reynolds: It's impossible to get men.

During 1916 many able-bodied men were called up from previously essential jobs, and this appeal relates to the dairy run by my great grandfather, Jacob Reynolds, and managed by his son-in-law, Arthur Martin. The case went to appeal in June 1916 but the appeal was overturned.

See also Heath Farm Dairy, Bernards Heath and Xmas Cards and the St Albans Military Tribunal, 1916

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