Meet Northampton's longest-serving village milkman still doing his rounds after 70 years

Every morning at exactly 5.27am, Tony Moulds is up with the lark in preparation to start his milk round in Holcot.

Thursday, 2nd January 2020, 2:39 pm
Updated Friday, 3rd January 2020, 12:30 am
Tony Moulds, 85, has been delivering milk to customers and homeowners in Holcot for 70 years. Pictures by Kirsty Edmonds.

For 70 years, the 85-year-old has been a face well-known and loved in his village.

Determined to make a living for himself, the former Northampton Grammar School pupil asked to leave education a year early at 15 years old to become a worker on nearby Homestead farm where he would milk the cows.

After the farmer there retired Tony took over the milk round and would deliver milk - taken straight from the cow - round to homes in Holcot using a bucket and a ladle.

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June Mabbutt has been Tony's longest customer. He used to deliver to her grandmother when she was a baby and has dropped a paper and a bottle of milk at her door ever since.

Milk soon needed to become pasteurized. Nationwide it was tested for tuberculosis and put into bottles instead, which Tony then started to deliver by float after years on-foot.

Speaking about why he still loves the job, Tony said: "I do it because I'm fit enough to do it and I've had a paper round for 40 years, which I do at the same time.

"I have always enjoyed meeting new people and knowing the people I serve but I have not always enjoyed the job in the frosty weather."

Tony also took on his father-in-laws farm where he worked alongside his wife, Jo, who used to bottle the milk up ready for Tony to deliver.

June Mabbutt has been Tony's longest customer. June Mabbutt has lived in the village since she was born and remembers her grandmother buying her milk from Tony when she was a youngster. Her daughter, Gail, now even takes over the milk and paper round when he's on holiday.

Tony, who started his milk round on January 2, 1950, still delivers full fat and semi-skimmed milk to 50 people and could be the longest-serving milkman in Northampton.

"I'll carry on working until I've had enough or I'm not well enough, I'm not planning to retire," Tony added.

"It gets me out seeing people and it's a reason to get up in the morning.

"It would be interesting to know if anyone has delivered milk and papers for as long as me."

Fellow Holcot resident Pat McGlasson has lived in the village for 40 years and said Tony is always at her door before 7am each day with her daily newspaper.

To celebrate Tony's milestone she has arranged a card and collection for him, adding up to £357, from his customers.

She said: "Come rain or shine, snow or sleet he delivers the papers and milk every single day.

"He is a unique man, he is very modest and does not blow his own trumpet. He is very aware of the older people in the village and is a real community person.

"What you see is what you get. He is highly thought of and is held in such high esteem by everybody."