Last Egg-sit to Oakham

You know when you are in rural England when you arrive at the main railway station and the machine on the platform is selling not train tickets, but freshly laid hens’ eggs.

This is Oakham in Rutland.

Despite being so centrally located within the country, I had never visited Rutland before; didn’t even believe that I had ever passed through it on the way to somewhere else.

Perhaps this has something to do with the fact that Rutland is England’s smallest county.  Blink whilst travelling from Northamptonshire to Lincolnshire or from Cambridgeshire to Leicestershire and you have missed it.

The egg vending machine was a nice welcome and although I didn’t really want a fresh egg, let alone a box of twenty, I found the machine rather fascinating.

The instructions were on the left-hand side of the apparatus and were illustrated with photographs for additional clarity.  The machine apparently dispensed batches of either twenty, a dozen, or single eggs, depending on how much money you inserted.  I could see how a box of twenty eggs could be doled out fairly efficiently, but a single egg being disgorged from the mechanical vendor in a strange parody of how it must once have so recently been laid by an Old Broody chicken, looked like it was asking for a potential messy scramble on the pavement.

© E. C. Glendenny

E. C. Glendenny is on staycation.


  1. Actually I’m pretty sure it only sells trays of 20 eggs, the other prices are just there for those people who can’t do the arithmetic to work out the price by the dozen :-). It’s a great machine, but there’s any even better one a few miles west towards Tilton-on-the-hill – it’s contactless and only £4 for 30 eggs. Just because we’re in a rural backwater doesn’t mean that we’re not up with technology!


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