Village People

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The Closet Man
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The Closet Man used to come round mostly at night to empty the closets (outside toilets) at the end of the yards or gardens.

In the early 20's Lavendon's "night soil collector" Bill Johnson was also a butcher and he farmed Tingewick Farm. When he retired he moved to Park Farm, and lived in the house with his family.

Billy Hoddle was a well known Closet Man, who used to wear womens' hats piled up on top of each other.

The toilets were usually at the top of the garden or in the yard. Most of them were a seat and bucket, others would be a pit known as an "earth closet".

The County Council employed men known as "Night Soil Collectors". They went round once a week emptying the closets into a big tank on wheels pulled by a horse. The earth pits were emptied every other week.

Click the play button to hear Joan Moore talking about Billy Hoddle.

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