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Stubborn Horses

I had worked for the RACS, which was based in Woolwich. They also had depots in Plumstead and other districts. I worked from the Catford Depot on the bread rounds which took us as far away as Greenwich where we used to meet up with our friends from Woolwich. This was when pig bins were well and truly set up in great numbers in all the roads throughout the London Borroughs and, I understand, were maintained by the Police Force.

My driver (a lady) and I had a horse named Nemo. Nemo got to know that certain goodies were often dumped in these smelly bins. Nemo realised how much more tasty these goodies were to munch on, compared with his humble nose bag.

With a full van load of bread we used to walk beside Nemo when going up a hill, to ease his load for the hard day ahead. The bread van had pneumatic tyres and a very good handbrake. However, when Nemo spotted a pig bin he would make for it, ignoring anything that might be in his way.

If my driver or me spotted one, we would automatically put the handbrake on to keep Nemo from moving. But, with enormous strength, he used to be able to struggle up to the bin, remove the heavy lid with his nose and munch away!

Once he got to the bin we used to let him eat, that was until he was spotted by a member of the constabulary who, on these occasions, would often threaten us with all sorts of punishment if we did not remove Nemo from his banquet. This we would do, but it took a great deal of effort.

Bob Kentsley.

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