Docker & Copper Story

by carolinejupp2014

My poster featuring a young girl with a barrow load of straw caught a passerby’s eye today.  It had jogged a memory and he told me this story:

My dad used to tell me this story from when he worked at the Tate & Lyle docks in Liverpool – Tate & Lyle had three factories then, one here in the East End, one in Greenock and another in Liverpool. The factory in Liverpool had policemen on the gates to stop stuff being nicked. One night a docker came through the gate with a wheelbarrow of straw. Of course the policeman had to search the straw, suspecting he was up to no good. But he didn’t find anything and had to let the docker pass. This went on for a couple of weeks, each night the docker came through with a wheelbarrow full of of straw and the copper searched through it. Never found a thing.

Years later, both the policeman and the docker had retired and they bumped into each other by chance. The policeman, curious, asked “What were you up to with all that straw?!” The docker confessed. “It were the wheelbarrows I was nicking!”