Miner and the Pancake 1932


buttermilk-pancakesIn Hamilton Sheriff Court on Wednesday 29th December 1932, Mr. Archibald Anderson, a miner of 16 Alpine Street, Low Blantyre tried to sue William Weir, baker and purveyor of 146 Glasgow Road, Blantyre. This was for £50 damages in respect of illness and loss of work alleged to have resulted through Archibald Anderson eating a pancake which contained a black cockroach!

Sheriff Murray, dismissing the action, held that the Archibald had failed to prove that the sickness was because of the pancake, the symptoms being compatible with other things. Curiously, neither him nor his wife went to the defender’s shop and complained about the pancake. Instead, a neighbour, Mrs Addison, and the Archibald’s daughter, Mary, made the complaint.

It was true, however, that Archibald had asked for a payment compensation from Weir, which was refused. William Weir denied that the pancake had been purchased in his shop, or that pursuer and his family had ever been customers. His Lordship however, accepted the evidence that the pancake had been purchased at Weir’s bakery; but observed that Archibald had only lost three days’ work at the time; and, although he maintained he had lost additional days since, he had failed to state what those dates were. In view of the trifling nature of the pursuer’s illness, and his good condition now, the sum which he had sued for (in course of the proof reduced to £5 for and £20 for solatium) was absurd. Archibald lost his case, and his Lordship awarded expenses in quite the reverse to be paid to William Weir for his loss of time, attending the court.

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  1. Nowadays people are eating cockroaches for protein, in some countries. This story shows how time has changed, and what others might have been eating for centuries. So interesting.

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