TD #179 Cover: The Story Behind Helping Hands – Maureen and Ray Stoneybatter

Posted 11 months ago in More

Taphouse september 2019

Maureen has been on our ‘most wanted’ list for some time now. She’s a ledgebag in the ‘Batter who always elicits a reaction from people. We know of people she’s barred from her shop where she has held sway for 39 years.

We’ve heard tales of her raffle where a friend queried if there were ever any winners. The following week Maureen produced a thrift shop blouse on a hanger and proceeded to congratulate said inquirer on their lucky day.

Our trusty hack Jack crossed her door on a few occasions only to be batted away. As recent as June 5, Jack mailed me to say, “Maureen got me out of her shop asap when I came to visit, I’m going to check in tomorrow but I’m not optimistic.” And then we found the key to unlock her, next door neighbour Ray.

We happen to be mates with Ray who runs A Slice of Cake Café. We saw the two of them cozying up to each other for a photo around Pride on our Facebook page. We had our ‘in’.

What follows is a delightful take on a neighbourhood but, even more so, a warming tale of an unlikely friendship. You’d expect Maureen to have no time for Ray with his fancy clothes and notions. You’d have thought wrong.

So, if you’ve been slighted by Maureen in the past, we declare it time to call an amnesty to hostilities and cross her door before she closes it.

Just don’t only ask for bin bag tags!

You can pick up our August issue in these locations and of course the article is also available to read online here.

Words: Michael McDermott

Images: Tristan Hutchinson


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