Late 1940s estate
Buckingham Way

Photo from village fayre

Buckingham Way

People in the houses here
Would supplement their wage
By doing other people’s chores
(Quite usual at this stage),
And many worked as daily helps
Or someone’s ‘gardening man’
For households who were better off
Or owned a bit of land.
‘Smithy’, ‘Marty’, also ‘Spod’
Are names that we recall,
Women who would rather clean
Than have no job at all.

It was quite usual in the post war years for busy housewives to pay for a daily help if they could afford to do so. Although it would have been usual in those days to address each other as Mrs Smith or Mrs Brown for instance, this would appear too formal for the relationship between housewife and daily help. And yet to call each other by your Christian names would have been unheard of. The solution was to give your daily help a nickname, which eased the formality without encrouching on the boundaries of your relationship. Hence names such as Spod, Smithy and so on were quite usual at this time. In many cases close bonds would develop between the family and the daily help.
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