All about Plymouth’s Past(ies)

Did you know that the earliest written record of pasty ingredients was found right here in Plymouth, and that an ‘oggy’ man once stood every night at the Devonport Dockyard gates?

A Story of Plymouth’s past(ies) tells some fascinating tales about pasty bakers from one hundred years ago, bicycle boys who once brought oggies to your door and the first local family to make their living selling just pasties and pies. Written by university students Emma Lawrence and Oliver Stephens, and illustrated by Roz Best, our book will even tell how to make – and crimp – your own classic pasty.

Whether you call it an oggy, a janner kebab or an elephant’s toenail, this book will explain why pasties have such an important place in Plymouth’s kitchens, tummies and even in its history.

As with our other books we were assisted in the early research for this book by children from local schools, Lipson Community College and Lipson Vale Primary School. We are also extremely grateful for the support of local pasty companies Ron Dewdney and Ivor Dewdney on this project and for providing the background story.

Roz Best, Oliver Stephens and Emma Lawrence with their book at the launch at St Aubyn’s Library

Emma, Oliver and Roz

The writing team with Marc Lintern and Helen Greathead

Helen with her pasty

Roz demonstrates how she illustrated her characters

Oliver sings the Oggy Man

Helen Greathead introduces ‘All about Plymouth’s Past(ies)’

Emma talks about how she and Oliver researched their story


Guests at the book launch filled St Aubyn’s Library.