Mrs Eileen Drayne MBE
Magheragall Women�s Institute
The late James Drayne (who died in
1977) pictured selling milk door to door in and
around Lisburn from a ten-gallon can on the back of
a pony and trap.
Mrs Eileen Drayne, a long serving member of Magheragall Women�s
Institute was a guest at St Patrick�s Cathedral in Armagh on
Maundy Thursday (20th March) to receive the Royal Maundy from
the Queen. The sprightly 83 year old greatly enjoys the
fellowship of the Women�s Institute and has been a member of
Magheragall branch for over half a century and Branch President
on two occasions.
A life long member of St Patrick�s Church, she now lives in Pond
Park Care Centre. Eileen was awarded an MBE in 1988 for services
to the community for 25 years voluntary work with �meals on
wheels�, succeeding the late Mrs Maureen McKinney, former Mayor
of Lisburn. She also was involved with Save the Children Fund
and Apostolic work, a charity that raises money for missionary
Eileen can clearly recall early days of the family business
(1932) when women filled their jugs from a ten gallon can on the
back of a pony and trap as her late husband James (who died in
1977) sold milk door to door in and around Lisburn. She said
that James soon got the reputation for good quality creamy milk
and credits this to James�s brother Dermot who she said �had a
keen eye for judging a good milking cow�. Dermot was in charge
of milking the cows. With no fridges in those early days to
store milk, she reckons that their creamy milk kept better.
Although the introduction of one stop shopping in supermarkets
gradually saw the decline in the requirement for door-to-door
milk sales, Draynes farms and milk retailing business has
continued to flourish with milk sales to hotels and restaurants.
For many years Eileen manually administered about 1000 milk
accounts each month. Having recently completed a 10-week
�Computers for Beginners� course, she realises that this manual
work, which took hours to compile, could now be done in minutes
using a computer software programme.
This year, Eileen has been joining in the special programme of
events at Magheragall Women�s Institute as they celebrate their
60th anniversary; and at a meeting in Low Quarter Orange Hall
last Thursday evening (10th April) she posed with other branch
members for a commemorative photograph.