And now for a piece of Aberdeen history. A while back, I was helping the church officer shovel the snow on the church paths. Since the disabled ramp was put in, there’s a lot of path to be cleared – she works very hard and usually without help. When we were done, she said something about “workin’ as hard as een a Wordie’s horses” – working as hard as one of Wordie’s horses. She saw my puzzled and interested expression and asked me if I knew about Wordie’s, which I didn’t.
She told me that in days gone by, Mr. Wordie owned the carts and horses that worked at the harbour. His business was located off Harriet Street, where the Bon Accord Centre (a large shopping centre) now stands. She said that every morning, Wordie’s horses left to go down Market Street to the harbour, and every evening, up they came again at the end of their long day of hauling and carting.
Wordie’s is long gone, but it lives on in the expression “working as hard as one of Wordie’s horses” and also in the name of the Ale House on Schoolhill, just around the corner from where Wordie’s used to be. I’d walked past this pub many a time:
Until my friend told me what the name commemorated, I’d never understood the significance of the stained-glass window over the door:
How much history goes right under our feet every day without our knowing!