A Complete Pig’s Ear

On 30 November 1916, Anne Viant borrowed a horse and trap to take a pig from Thelbridge to Lapford. She knew Lapford well, having recently moved from Filleigh Cottage.

With the pig delivered, it seems that Ann socialised somewhere in the village and had one too many. She was duly summoned by the village constable for being drunk in charge of a horse and trap!

At the court hearing, a week later, it transpired in court that Mrs Viant had been quite unlucky. She had decided to do a little shopping in Lapford before returning home and called at a house intending to buy some vegetables. A man opened the door and was taken aback to find a somewhat tipsy lady asking if he sold onions. Mrs Viant had made the unfortunate error of knocking on the door of the police house!

She pleaded guilty and was fined 9 shillings

In 1960, Margaret “Ann” Viant made the front page of a number of newspapers across the country when storms hit her home at Moortown, Chawleigh. When flood waters began rising in her house it was a terrible ordeal: she was elderly, widowed, blind and living alone in the remote cottage. Firemen found Mrs Viant crying on her stairs. The rescue became quite a national story and she received a number of donations from well wishers. Sadly, she died less than a year after the incident.

The Liverpool Echo, 06 October, 1960