Chicken Run

By James Arbuthnott

IT HAS been 18 years since Greg and Corina opened Elsey's Quality Chickens on Gillies St in Rochester.

On that magical day Corina asked her mother, Joyce Caulkeran, to run down the street in a chicken suit to celebrate its opening.

And on Monday, Joyce dusted off the old chicken suit one last time to celebrate Elsey's handover to new owners.

"It is with both excitement and sadness after 18 years that we would like to inform the community of the news that Elsey's Quality Chickens will change ownership as of August 12," Greg and Corina said on Facebook.

"We would like to take this opportunity to thank our family and friends who have supported us through this journey.

"To our customers, sometimes we knew what you wanted before you did - thank you from the bottom of our hearts for making Elseys Quality Chickens what it is today.

"We know you will make the new owners so welcome and will show them the support you've always showed us."

"It is the end of an era," said Joyce, who again wore the chicken suit for Elsey's fifth anniversary.

"Maybe next week we'll know how we feel when everything's settled reality sets in," Corina said.

While Joyce said she wanted to embarrass her daughter one last time before the handover, Corina said it's the last time her mother will get the chance to embarrass her at work.

"At one point we'll put on the caravan and take off for a bit once things settle down," Corina said.

She said she and her mother will shop there. And Joyce has already told the new owners what her regular order is.

"I'd like to say thank you to all our customers, family and friends who have supported us all these years," 

The new owners of Elsey's Chicken are Chris and Sandra.