The Carriers Ponies by Charlotte and Pat Wilson

The Carrier’s Ponies

The Carrier was coming, our grazing was over,
a night of freedom eating sweet grass and clover.
He whistled as he walked and that was our call,
we had to stop what we were doing and come one and all.

‘Susie’ was first to him, she was his pet,
a loving tickle on her ears she expected to get.
‘Mazie’ and ‘Thunder’ were next for their treat
he always brought us some carrot all dirty and sweet.

Greedy ‘Polly’ came at a gallop passing ‘Sam’ who walked,
‘Big Red’ and ‘Blackie’ in horse language to the Carrier talked.
I came next walking slightly stiff, “lets see that leg, I hope you’re fine,
he looked at my wound “its cleared up ‘Beauty’ but only just in time”.

“Let’s be having you ‘Paddy’” he said with a smile,
friendship between man and pony had grown over many a mile.
Last came the youngest a fell pony called ‘Ben’
“get in line now, remember as youngest you’re number ten”.

We were offered fresh water in buckets made of wood,
and ‘Paddy’, as the lead pony patiently stood.
We were brushed and checked from head to foot,
‘Polly’ who had a stone bruise was fitted with her boot.

Our harness and reins were fitted with care; we were almost ready;
the carrying saddle caused alarm at the back “Steady ‘Ben’ steady”.
“Right my Lovelies” the Carrier finally said,
“Let’s get to Dukesfield and get loaded with lead”.

Written by ‘Beauty’ a shiny black Galloway Pony.

Alias Charlotte Wilson aged 7 years (and her Grandma aged much older!)

The Dukesfield Smelters and Carriers Project aimed to celebrate and discover the heritage of the Dukesfield Arches & lead carriers' routes between Blaydon and the lead mines of Allendale and Weardale. A two year community project, it was led by the Friends of the North Pennines in partnership with Hexhamshire and Slaley Parish Councils and the active support of Allendale Estates. It was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the generous support of other sponsors. Friends of the North Pennines: Charity No:1137467