Frank Noel of Gorey, aged 92, talks to Arthur McGugan about vraicking at Grouville. Includes: remebers Mrs Pearce, Bill Amy; children played around the stacks of vraic; father was in the racing yachts in England; father and Mr Le Tourner vraicking; farmers from all over Jersey came to collect vraic; used forks and rakes; no visitors on the beaches in those days; vraic used mostly on grass; sold for about £7 a stack; still puts seaweed on his garden - gives vegetables a different flavour; 1913 started apprenticeship at Grandins' making grates, 1914 was drilling in the militia; 1916 joined the army; when he came back from the war nothing had changed, same people - Bill Spears and his wife; Ray, the golfer's brother; social side to vraicing - vraic buns, drank at the Welcome Inn; fishing for sand eels at La Rocque, the Seymour Inn used to open at night; vraicking was turned into a family party; winkling; regulations - no vraicking on Sundays, controlled by fishing inspectors - Tom Le Seeleur; short wellingtons, oilskins and sou'westers worn; a ship, the Othello sank off Seymour tower; vraic burnt in fireplaces; feels that vraic is cleaner than fertilizers used today; life was simpler; seafood - winkles, scallops, oysters; remembers early potato fields around Gorey; marking vraic in heaps; feels that 'outsiders' don't respect the rules, take other peoples lobster pots; way of life totally different; cutting vraic died out; 'berry vraic' good for the ground. Recorded by Arthur McGugan on 17/07/1991.




July 17th 1991 - July 17th 1991


McGugan, Arthur
Noel, Frank
Pearce, Mrs
Amy, Bill
Le Tourner, Mr
Grandin and Company
Spears, Mrs
Spears, Bill
Ray Family
Seymour Inn
Welcome Inn
Le Seelleur, Tom
Othello (ship)


oral history | sound | Vraic | Farmers | Farming | Agriculture | Potatoes | Beaches | Food | Militia | Inns | shipwrecks | Shellfish | fertilizers | Gorey | Grouville Bay | La Rocque | Seymour slipway | Seymour Tower


1 cassette



Level of description



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