Swatland & Son
Charlbert Street Butchers
Faith Robinson was kind enough to mention that Swatland & Son sold excellent meat with prompt delivery. My father (James) rose at 4 am to chose the meat at Smithfield Market, and I often went with him to learn this skill when I was a schoolboy (although it usually resulted in me sleeping through my afternoon classes). I delivered the Saturday meat by bicycle – a top-heavy brute with a wickerwork basket and a readily detachable chain. I lived above the shop at 39 Charlbert Street from 1973-4 and have happy memories of the adjacent pubs and being awakened by the Artillery horses on the way to their exercise field in Regent’s Park.
The top photo shows my dad, the master butcher in the centre, with my sister Veronica when she was the cashier, plus Ted Thomas the lead butcher.
Editors’ note : Howard Swatland is Professor Emeritus, University of Guelph, Canada and researches the science of meat. He learnt meat cutting in 1962 at a college near Smithfield, obtained a B.Sc in Zoology in 1967, and a PhD in Muscle Biology in 1971 at the University of Wisconsin and after a research fellowship in pathology at the Central Veterinary Laboratory in England joined the faculty at the University of Guelph.