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William Newman & Sons Ltd., Hospital St., B’ham

Ex Briton worker

Brummie babby
I have been reading with great interest about different people who have worked at William Newman and sons ltd in hospital street,when I left school in 1958 this was my first job.
I worked in Bert bollards shop for my first couple of years doing anything from labouring to fetching hot dogs next to the spray shop and machining door parts.I met a great set of people there and had a great laugh with fellow workers.i then was transfered to the Briton shop under the tuition of old Jackie Rose .
All the names you people have mentioned I knew ,the Clark bro,s Horace Poole Stan Haywood who for some reason was always tugging on his trousers at the rear end.
Christmas time there was magic as the beer flowed we all stopped work and I went upstairs to. See the girls in packing ,I had took my reel to reel tape recorder to play music but Stan came running over asking me to turn it down as they could not hear the tannoy.I cannot imagine this going on today happy days. I also remember going on evening nights out on a coach to some pub with a lot of workers in charge of all this was a Mr Goodchild , yet again a good time was had by all .the beer in those days was mainly ansells or m&b mild ,never heard of bitter then.
I had a motorbike then ,it was a 1958 BSA Gold Flash ( wish I still had it ).You could not mistake the sound of it ,it used to frighten Jackie Rose as I passed him on his little 2 Stroke. Joe Bromwich the man who loaded the assembled Britons on the conveyer up to the packing girls above ,his name just came to me as I was typing.
I then went to Bescot Walsall to work on the Acme Gridleys with a very good friend of mine Roy Hines the foreman there was Len Littlewood his nickname was Splinter
I hope this has brushed some dust off the past.
For me the best working days of my life.
 

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
As a new member from today I have found it very interesting reading all the comments and particularly the latest contribution from ex Briton Worker. I joined the company on the 10th January 1955 age 15 as a Progress Chaser and Commercial trainee and in fact worked in the same office as Bill Goodchild who was mentioned. My duties involved contact with all the different shop foremen most of whom I developed good working relations with, but as has been mentioned the odd ones were like tyrants and ruled their domains like dictators. Life working in the office was a daily challenge particularly early morning which would start with Colonel Newman together with Reg Smith Sales Director and Frank Bennett Sales Manager going through the post, sorting orders, cheque payments and various other items of paperwork. The Colonel would then make his way past a considerable number of sales staff on his way to the Accounts Office and if he stopped to speak, you stood up from your desk said 'good morning sir' exchanged conversation he then went on his way. Yes there was a fair amount of discipline which was no doubt due to his armed forces background. By nature and it was probably due to the educational training provided by the company for me, which involved day release and evening studies at Walsall Technical College, I became a hoarder and today I still have my original book entitled 'Introduction to the Newman Group for Staff and Works' over 60 years later, and also 'The Story of William Newman and Sons Limited established in Wolverhampton in 1750 and celebrating the 200 year Bi Centenary in 1950. There is a section at the back of the book which is very interesting as it sets out the family tree from 1750 through to the last entry of Edward Barnes who was born in 1926 and who was instrumental in my studies through the company training scheme. The companies management structure was fairly complicated starting with trainees like myself and others, and continuing with Junior, Middle and Senior Management levels. Over a period spanning 20 years, up till when I left the company in 1975, I had reached a Senior management level and during that time had virtually been involved and responsible for the sales of a very wide range of the companies products including all types of brass-foundry and associated fittings, all the different types of hydraulic door closing devices which were produced in the Briton Shop managed by Eric Garner and assisted by George Rutter, which have been mentioned in other contributions. Finally becoming product sales manager for Emergency Exit Products. I will end this for the moment in the hope you do not find the contribution boring, its been forwarded from Newquay in Cornwall where I moved with my family 40 years ago including my wife who spent 10 years working in the warehouse office, it's our 60th wedding anniversary later this year she was a Great Russell Street Girl which is only a few hundred yards from the factory in Hospital Street.

Derek.R.Walker Monday 25th March 2019.
 

postie

The buck stops here
Staff member
Thank you Derek for your fine contribution and it certainly isn't boring..
 

Ex Briton worker

Brummie babby
As a new member from today I have found it very interesting reading all the comments and particularly the latest contribution from ex Briton Worker. I joined the company on the 10th January 1955 age 15 as a Progress Chaser and Commercial trainee and in fact worked in the same office as Bill Goodchild who was mentioned. My duties involved contact with all the different shop foremen most of whom I developed good working relations with, but as has been mentioned the odd ones were like tyrants and ruled their domains like dictators. Life working in the office was a daily challenge particularly early morning which would start with Colonel Newman together with Reg Smith Sales Director and Frank Bennett Sales Manager going through the post, sorting orders, cheque payments and various other items of paperwork. The Colonel would then make his way past a considerable number of sales staff on his way to the Accounts Office and if he stopped to speak, you stood up from your desk said 'good morning sir' exchanged conversation he then went on his way. Yes there was a fair amount of discipline which was no doubt due to his armed forces background. By nature and it was probably due to the educational training provided by the company for me, which involved day release and evening studies at Walsall Technical College, I became a hoarder and today I still have my original book entitled 'Introduction to the Newman Group for Staff and Works' over 60 years later, and also 'The Story of William Newman and Sons Limited established in Wolverhampton in 1750 and celebrating the 200 year Bi Centenary in 1950. There is a section at the back of the book which is very interesting as it sets out the family tree from 1750 through to the last entry of Edward Barnes who was born in 1926 and who was instrumental in my studies through the company training scheme. The companies management structure was fairly complicated starting with trainees like myself and others, and continuing with Junior, Middle and Senior Management levels. Over a period spanning 20 years, up till when I left the company in 1975, I had reached a Senior management level and during that time had virtually been involved and responsible for the sales of a very wide range of the companies products including all types of brass-foundry and associated fittings, all the different types of hydraulic door closing devices which were produced in the Briton Shop managed by Eric Garner and assisted by George Rutter, which have been mentioned in other contributions. Finally becoming product sales manager for Emergency Exit Products. I will end this for the moment in the hope you do not find the contribution boring, its been forwarded from Newquay in Cornwall where I moved with my family 40 years ago including my wife who spent 10 years working in the warehouse office, it's our 60th wedding anniversary later this year she was a Great Russell Street Girl which is only a few hundred yards from the factory in Hospital Street.

Derek.R.Walker Monday 25th March 2019.
Hi derek ,
Thanks for your reply regarding wm Newman’s, you would have been there at the same time as myself .
I can,t think what the personnel managers name was ,but I recall he had an interest in clocks. Thinking of names you would recall to name but a few .
polishing shop foreman Len Humphries, plating shop foreman Mason, alias Maggot ,can’t remember his first name. I would have met all of them in my time there through my various duties, having been chased by a few of them for being cheeky.
Do you remember the old chap who operated the lift, I think he was past retirement when I started there.
Did you ever taste the sausage cobs from the ground floor canteen .i would be in and out of there most of the day.
I used to live in Prestbury road off witton road in Aston.
We now live in Derbyshire and have done for the last 20 years.
happy days.
Dave ex briton worker
 

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
Hi derek ,
Thanks for your reply regarding wm Newman’s, you would have been there at the same time as myself .
I can,t think what the personnel managers name was ,but I recall he had an interest in clocks. Thinking of names you would recall to name but a few .
polishing shop foreman Len Humphries, plating shop foreman Mason, alias Maggot ,can’t remember his first name. I would have met all of them in my time there through my various duties, having been chased by a few of them for being cheeky.
Do you remember the old chap who operated the lift, I think he was past retirement when I started there.
Did you ever taste the sausage cobs from the ground floor canteen .i would be in and out of there most of the day.
I used to live in Prestbury road off witton road in Aston.
We now live in Derbyshire and have done for the last 20 years.
happy days.
Dave ex briton worker
Hi Dave and thanks for your response. Mr H R Bushell was the personal manager and I found him a bit eccentric. I vividly remember being interviewed by him on the Friday morning before I started on the Monday 10th January 1955 and as it was close to lunchtime he asked me if I could come back again after lunch. I agreed to this and I had to wait quite a time before he was back because apparently he had left his car in Town and forgot where he had parked it. Despite this he was a nice old boy and he must have served the company well. I still remember the names of some of the foreman, as you said Len Humphries his daughter was a charge hand in the warehouse where all the shipping of finished products were dealt with. Edgar Seal taskmaster, Frank Mason, Tommy Collins, Bert Bolland, whos department manufactured the Pyx and Mini coin locks and Indicating bolts which were just a small part of the products produced in his department. George Raybould, Vic Garfield, Sgts Len Shilvock and G Cowley were time office personnel who sat adjacent to the lift and made sure they reserved it on the ground floor pending the colonels arrival. Harry Dangerfield was responsible for Floor Spring production. That only covers part of the production staff there were several others whos names escape me. Interesting that you lived off Witton Road in Aston although I was born in Erdington I grew up in Holland Road in Aston which was close to the cinema on Aston Cross later to become the Crossroads television studio. I went to Upper Thomas Street School which I have been catching up on recently, Spent most of my time playing sport or sitting on my own in a small room blowing up and dubbing footballs and also all the cricket and sporting gear which the various sports teams used, hence the reason I spent 4 years studying after leaving. Regarding breakfast eats I don't think I can remember the ground floor facility, we used to have a lady come round the office pushing a trolley with hot toast and cheese rolls which always went down well. Witton Road reminds me of Bert Pittaway the fishing tackle shop owner that I used to collect the maggots from for our fishing trips, happy days as you say. After I left the company I spent over 3 years selling all round the black country and then in 1978 moved to Cornwall to join my brother who also worked in the drawing office of the company, he was assistant to Bill Hartland the works manager and one of his projects was overseeing the installation of the Electrostatic spraying equipment in the Briton spraying shop.
Regards Derek.
 

Ex Briton worker

Brummie babby
Hi Dave and thanks for your response. Mr H R Bushell was the personal manager and I found him a bit eccentric. I vividly remember being interviewed by him on the Friday morning before I started on the Monday 10th January 1955 and as it was close to lunchtime he asked me if I could come back again after lunch. I agreed to this and I had to wait quite a time before he was back because apparently he had left his car in Town and forgot where he had parked it. Despite this he was a nice old boy and he must have served the company well. I still remember the names of some of the foreman, as you said Len Humphries his daughter was a charge hand in the warehouse where all the shipping of finished products were dealt with. Edgar Seal taskmaster, Frank Mason, Tommy Collins, Bert Bolland, whos department manufactured the Pyx and Mini coin locks and Indicating bolts which were just a small part of the products produced in his department. George Raybould, Vic Garfield, Sgts Len Shilvock and G Cowley were time office personnel who sat adjacent to the lift and made sure they reserved it on the ground floor pending the colonels arrival. Harry Dangerfield was responsible for Floor Spring production. That only covers part of the production staff there were several others whos names escape me. Interesting that you lived off Witton Road in Aston although I was born in Erdington I grew up in Holland Road in Aston which was close to the cinema on Aston Cross later to become the Crossroads television studio. I went to Upper Thomas Street School which I have been catching up on recently, Spent most of my time playing sport or sitting on my own in a small room blowing up and dubbing footballs and also all the cricket and sporting gear which the various sports teams used, hence the reason I spent 4 years studying after leaving. Regarding breakfast eats I don't think I can remember the ground floor facility, we used to have a lady come round the office pushing a trolley with hot toast and cheese rolls which always went down well. Witton Road reminds me of Bert Pittaway the fishing tackle shop owner that I used to collect the maggots from for our fishing trips, happy days as you say. After I left the company I spent over 3 years selling all round the black country and then in 1978 moved to Cornwall to join my brother who also worked in the drawing office of the company, he was assistant to Bill Hartland the works manager and one of his projects was overseeing the installation of the Electrostatic spraying equipment in the Briton spraying shop.
Regards Derek.
Hi Derek.
Thanks for refreshing my memory about Mr Bushell, also Frank. Mason its all flooding back now.
You also mentioned Bert Pittaways fishing tackle shop ,and like yourself also used the shop ,I used to fish at Salford Park, as it was called then and bagged up with Perch and roach.I also recall that on a few occasions myself and a mate of mine from Bert Bollonds shop had to go to Harry Dangerfields shop ,we used to use a heavy pump truck to fetch whatever it was, so on leaving Hospital Street and joining Bridge St we would jump on this truck after getting up some momento .It was a 2 person job to steer because of the weight but , on entering the big doors my mate jumped off leaving me to struggle ,well I could not steer it and went crashing into a pile of castings.
That aroused the attention of Harry himself, when asked what had happened I replied ,I could not stop it as it ran away down the slope.
You mentioned that you live in Cornwall ,we love Cornwall and have a couple of friends who live in Gulval near Penzance and some more who live at St Stevens near Newquay.
Do you recall a shop on Witton road called Darlingtons which sold just about everything.?
I still fish today and am waiting for the better weather to come.
Regards
Dave ex Briton worker
 

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
Hi Dave
The thing about Frank Mason was that if I went to see him in the morning trying to push something, he didn't want to know, contrast that with seeing him again after lunch when hed'e had a drop and he couldn't be more helpful. Some of the finishes that were produced in his department were incredible, one that comes to mind was Antique Copper Bronze and relieved, also his chrome plating was always on a base of copper and nickel plating, breath on it which was the test and it would last for ages. Fishing at Salford Park what memories, I used to fish by a large pipe inlet which invariably provided us with some sport but our favourite place was on the river seven at Worcester, we had a converted landing craft tied up there, nothing very fancy, but Friday night most weekends we would catch the Midland Red bus from Digbeth and that was us for the weekend. Unfortunately it got ripped from it's moorings by the tidal bore and finished up in pieces at digliss weir, we had an old gypsy caravan after that at virtually the same spot so Worcester was like a second home for years. Harry Dangerfield was another one that could be a bit teasy, like Edgar Seal from the brassfoundry shop to use a cornish expression they would 'glaze' out of their office windows to make sure the workers had their heads down. Nice to know you have friends who live in the County, were they locals or like us moved for a better quality of life. I am quite involved in the local football scene and I think St Stephens play in what we call the East Cornwall League. I have 2 grown up grandchildren that play for a team in Town so that takes care of most Saturdays. Cant say I remember the name Darlingtons I think too many years gone by, I seem to remember that Buttons Factory was down one of the side roads also I think there was a Railway Bridge across the road a bit further down. The one expression that still comes to mind is Ansells Brewery and HP Source make a stink on Aston Crawce, went passed them everyday on the way to school, that woke you up!!
Regards Derek.
 

Ex Briton worker

Brummie babby
Hi Dave
The thing about Frank Mason was that if I went to see him in the morning trying to push something, he didn't want to know, contrast that with seeing him again after lunch when hed'e had a drop and he couldn't be more helpful. Some of the finishes that were produced in his department were incredible, one that comes to mind was Antique Copper Bronze and relieved, also his .chrome plating was always on a base of copper and nickel plating, breath on it which was the test and it would last for ages. Fishing at Salford Park what memories, I used to fish by a large pipe inlet which invariably provided us with some sport but our favourite place was on the river seven at Worcester, we had a converted landing craft tied up there, nothing very fancy, but Friday night most weekends we would catch the Midland Red bus from Digbeth and that was us for the weekend. Unfortunately it got ripped from it's moorings by the tidal bore and finished up in pieces at digliss weir, we had an old gypsy caravan after that at virtually the same spot so Worcester was like a second home for years. Harry Dangerfield was another one that could be a bit teasy, like Edgar Seal from the brassfoundry shop to use a cornish expression they would 'glaze' out of their office windows to make sure the workers had their heads down. Nice to know you have friends who live in the County, were they locals or like us moved for a better quality of life. I am quite involved in the local football scene and I think St Stephens play in what we call the East Cornwall League. I have 2 grown up grandchildren that play for a team in Town so that takes care of most Saturdays. Cant say I remember the name Darlingtons I think too many years gone by, I seem to remember that Buttons Factory was down one of the side roads also I think there was a Railway Bridge across the road a bit further down. The one expression that still comes to mind is Ansells Brewery and HP Source make a stink on Aston Crawce, went passed them everyday on the way to school, that woke you up!!
Regards Derek.
[/QUOTE
Hi Derek.
With regards to your uncertainity of the bridge

I am sure you are refering to the one just after the island on Witton Road where it becomes Brookvale Road. Also turning right at the same island was a bus and tram depot.
Further along the road you will come to Aston Villa grounds, still further along the same you would have seen Pat Collins onion fairground.opposite that was Aston Hall.
You mentioning the brass warehouse reminded me of a dear old man short in height ,with white balding head name of Fred ,don,t remember his surname, I sold him my B.S.A. WINGED WHEEL moped 35 cc 2 stroke ,don,t know if you remember the bike or Fred.
Like yourself I used to travel to fish, myself and a good friend used to go to Stratford on Avon , but on our push bikes ,must have been mad ,but when you are 13 years old it,s what you do .
Do you remember the Briton repair shop on your right just after walking in the main gate ,a man called George used to run it on his own and when I called in to get his breakfast order 9 times out of 10 he would be asleep,I know he had a disorder that made him like it ,and someone put a do not disturb on the door.
I liked the upstairs canteen in Bridge Street along with the 2 snooker tables it had.
Trouble was to get a game in the dinner break was almost impossible as Len Humphries and his friends used to dominate them .Happy days.
Regards.
Dave
 

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
Hi Dave, I think I completely got my geography wrong in relation to Witton Road. The two roads fairly adjacent to Aston Cross which I had got confused were Park Road which headed in the direction of the Villa and Aston Hall//Park, spent many hours playing football there. The other one was Litchfield Road which again I could be wrong but I think the 3X tram used to go along there and would pass Salford Reservoir and head for the Tyburn area. My wife's parents who had lived in Gt Russell Street for many years spent their remaining years in Perry Barr overlooking the Old and New 'Crown and Cusheon' public houses and am I right in thinking that Witton Road was off the Island there and as you say that would take you to the Villa. You mentioned the Bus Station and that reminded me of one of the guys I represented the snooker league with, his name was Graham Miles who was a maintenance worker until he joined the professional snooker ranks and he enjoyed quite a good carrier but unfortunately departed prematurely. Anther guy who was quite prominent and who I went to school with was Johnny Prescott who made his name boxing. The brass warehouse you mentioned was presumably where all the brass and gun metal castings used to be stored. The guy I remember was D Ward and the Iron warehouse was Fred Bradbury but I did not recognise your description, there was a white haired guy in charge of the finished products warehouse but his name was Tommy Read. I should know something about the briton repair shop after all my years of service but not only can I not remember the location I don't remember any personnel. Talking about the snooker tables in the canteen they were just a continuation of my misspent youth having spent hours and hours playing on the tables at lunchtime and also for Newmans team and also being a member of the Mikardo Snooker Hall which was located on Aston Cross. Funny story which I remember abut the tables in the canteen, the managers used to dominate the use of one of the tables at lunchtime. One of them who was the Sales Manager could have played for most of his lifetime and could never pot 2 balls together, one day he started by potting 3 reds and 3 blacks promptly stopped playing and took out his wallet and identity card to check it was him because he couldn't believe he was capable of such an achievement,
Happy days,
Best wishes
Derek.
 

Ex Briton worker

Brummie babby
hi derek
The road you mentioned at the island in Perry Barr was Witton Lane ,which terminated at the next island at Witton Road.
Graham Miles the snooker player I Remember also Johnny Prescott,I joined the Barn Social Club in 1961 and used to play a lot of snooker there. I can still remember my membership No (6236), I bet the numbers are a lot higher today.
Going back to Witton Road I can recall as a boy collecting the oil soaked wooden blocks that used to be laid alongside the tram lines, on the tram lines being removed it was a free for all to collect as many blocks as you could. Due to coal rationing being in force.
We as young boys used to take our old no longer needed prams and push them to Upper Sutton Street to collect our ration of coke or coal .
You would join a long queue and wait to be loaded the same prams were used to carry the wooden blocks from Witton Road, I cannot believe that was over 60 years ago ,happy days though.
Regards
Dave
 

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
Hi Dave
Some interesting comment again, I remember the Barn at Witton being talked about in fact my brother in law was also a member but I don't ever remember going there. I tried to find further information but by the looks of things it appeared to have closed its doors several years ago. I certainly was not aware of the availability of wooden blocks which you described but I definitely remember the demise of the trams which were replaced by buses. I think we lived parallel lives because most Saturdays I had to go and hire a trolley and go to Saltley Gas Works to collect coke come hail rain or sunshine and the same as you, there were occasions when it run out just as you were getting to the front of the queue. I also remember doing the same journey for an old lady who lived just down the road and who gave me sixpence in old money, that was me set up with sweets for a few days providing there was some sweet coupons left, filleries toffees I can till taste them now. Sundays was very similar because again I had to hire a trolley because I used to help a guy by doing half of his established paper round, there was one house that I delivered papers to which also included a copy of the racing pigeon which used to puzzle me until later on when I found out it was a very popular sport. How things are different today I look at my grandchildren, ones school teacher and the other an estate agent and think to myself they do not know they are born, having said that they both work hard they live just across the road and are always popping in for something to eat, our hope is that they both might marry sometime but we don't hold our breath. Talking about snooker I have just sold my cues which I have had for I don't know how many years, I was sorry to see them go but couldn't get down now so it was time to let them go.
Cheers Dave
 
Hi Derek and Dave,
Many thanks to both of you, you have helped jog my failing memory - I really appreciate your recollection of names etc at William Newmans / Newman Tonks. Me and my schoolmate (both 15 year olds) started in1968 shortly before Christmas - we both went through the Training Scheme and ended up as a millwright and an electrician respectively. My boss Joe Sirr (the only person MD Bert Shead called by his first name - well he couldn't call him Sirr !) Chargehands' Vic ? (from Quinton) Mick Hammond, Harold Fletcher (previously Berts' Mechanic - until George ? took over) and me - then some years later Paul Kinsella, another Trainee - next door was the electricians - Charlie Maclean, Dave Cowper and my mate from school. Some names come to mind and in no particular order I will try and relate name and position or department and will try not to duplicate any that Derek and Dave have recalled. Gerald Allsopp, Training Manager - Duncan Corbett, Marketing - Susan Corbett, Receptionist - Marilyn Wall, Philamenia ? both in Wages Dept. - Keith York, Maintenance Manager - Leon Shaw, Master craftsman in the Development Dept. - Sidney Wisedale, Brass Shop Chargehand (small in stature but a giant of a man) - Joe Magee, Boilerman - Diane Davies, Personnel Dept. Margaret Silvers, Leading Hand, Britton packing and Spraying Dept. - Barmaid Sheila and Husband Dave. Ken Jennings Union Convenor
I am sure with more thought I may recall a few more especially the football teams - Manager George (Lorry Driver between factories Hospital Street and Bescot Crescent Walsall) - Steve Stone - Tony ? worked in the Briton Shop - Geoff Payne worked in most Depts. - Chris Harrison, Briton Shop - Paul ? (Married Diane Davies) Development Dept.
Sohal Singh - Mohammed Fazal - Paul Taylor - Michael Hesslington - Leslie Hobbis all trainees with me at Walsall Chamber of Commerce - My School mate went there the year before - they had to split us up, lol.
A couple of the lads at Bescot were Sidney Sergeant & Bob Hollingsworth Maintenance and that's it for now. I left shortly before Christmas 1982 After 14 wonderful years of banter and laughter - being on maintenance I could visit all areas of the company and got on well with everyone - unfortunately the 1982 strikes that we were forced to undertake was the writing on the wall for me, then when voluntary redundancy became an option I was pleased to take it, but gutted at leaving all my friends behind. My schoolmate especially - going from seeing him daily for nearly 20 years to just the occasional pint. He stayed on at Newmans - Ingersoll and all the company names that followed until he was made redundant, in his late fifties.
Me - I'm - Phil Yate -- My schoolmate workmate best mate - John Healy
I hope that some of these names jogs both of your memories, and that of other readers, perhaps some more names from our workmates will appear or stories may unfold. Many Thanks.
 
Last edited:

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
Hi Derek and Dave,
Many thanks to both of you, you have helped jog my failing memory - I really appreciate your recollection of names etc at William Newmans / Newman Tonks. Me and my schoolmate (both 15 year olds) started in1968 shortly before Christmas - we both went through the Training Scheme and ended up as a millwright and an electrician respectively. My boss Joe Sirr (the only person MD Bert Shead called by his first name - well he couldn't call him Sirr !) Chargehands' Vic ? (from Quinton) Mick Hammond, Harold Fletcher (previously Berts' Mechanic - until George ? took over) and me - then some years later Paul Kinsella, another Trainee - next door was the electricians - Charlie Maclean, Dave Cowper and my mate from school. Some names come to mind and in no particular order I will try and relate name and position or department and will try not to duplicate any that Derek and Dave have recalled. Gerald Allsopp, Training Manager - Duncan Corbett, Marketing - Susan Corbett, Receptionist - Marilyn Wall, Philamenia ? both in Wages Dept. - Keith York, Maintenance Manager - Leon Shaw, Master craftsman in the Development Dept. - Sidney Wisedale, Brass Shop Chargehand (small in stature but a giant of a man) - Joe Magee, Boilerman - Diane Davies, Personnel Dept. Margaret Silvers, Leading Hand, Britton packing and Spraying Dept. - Barmaid Sheila and Husband Dave. Ken Jennings Union Convenor
I am sure with more thought I may recall a few more especially the football teams - Manager George (Lorry Driver between factories Hospital Street and Bescot Crescent Walsall) - Steve Stone - Tony ? worked in the Briton Shop - Geoff Payne worked in most Depts. - Chris Harrison, Briton Shop - Paul ? (Married Diane Davies) Development Dept.
Sohal Singh - Mohammed Fazal - Paul Taylor - Michael Hesslington - Leslie Hobbis all trainees with me at Walsall Chamber of Commerce - My School mate went there the year before - they had to split us up, lol.
A couple of the lads at Bescot were Sidney Sergeant & Bob Hollingsworth Maintenance and that's it for now. I left shortly before Christmas 1982 After 14 wonderful years of banter and laughter - being on maintenance I could visit all areas of the company and got on well with everyone - unfortunately the 1982 strikes that we were forced to undertake was the writing on the wall for me, then when voluntary redundancy became an option I was pleased to take it, but gutted at leaving all my friends behind. My schoolmate especially - going from seeing him daily for nearly 20 years to just the occasional pint. He stayed on at Newmans - Ingersoll and all the company names that followed until he was made redundant, in his late fifties.
Me - I'm - Phil Yate -- My schoolmate workmate best mate - John Healy
I hope that some of these names jogs both of your memories, and that of other readers, perhaps some more names from our workmates will appear or stories may unfold. Many Thanks.
Hi Phil, Dave. Over the weekend just gone I did a fairly lengthy response but unfortunately I couldn't send it because I was unsure how to attach a combination of photos historical and sporting and needed to get some assistance from one of my grandchildren. In the interim period my reply appears to have vanished into the ether so I will have to start from square one again which will take a few days. Will do my best to reply asap. best wishes.
Derek.
 

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
Hi Phil, Dave, Nice to read that Phil has stumbled across our William Newman exchanges and made an contribution to our past memories. My employment commenced some 13 years before you joined Phil which is perhaps the reason why I do not recognise very many of the names you highlighted. If Gerald Alsopp Training Manager was a tall dark haired guy then he was the same person who arranged my training. In the wages office Mr Boulter was in charge and he was also the company secretary. He had a long standing assistant named Hilda and also other members of staff. My guess was that Hilda might have retired some time after 1975 when I left. Regarding the strikes you mentioned , again this was after I left but probably the nearest disruption I could remember was when we worked a 3 day week due to cuts in power supplies. Regarding your mention of sport, this was something very close to my heart because it was a natural progression from my school days in Aston where I spent most of my time maintaining the schools sporting equipment. I played for several years in the companies Football, Cricket and Snooker teams and I am on most of the photos which I am attaching. That's me collecting the cup and also being held aloft. The cricket photos include Ken Parker in the middle of the front rows, he was the manager of the time and motion study and costing department and was a real cricket playing enthusiast. The photo showing the empty glasses was a trainee presentation and from memory I was given an award for joint top commercial trainee, I am tucked in on the right hand side at the end. In total I spent 2 years at Walsall and Staffordshire Technical College commercial day release and then a further 3 years at West Bromwich College of Commerce and technology studying for a professional qualification a combination of day release and 2 evenings per week. On reflection it was a fair sacrifice because by this time I was married with 2 children, having said that I will be forever grateful for the investment made in me by the company which proved invaluable during the course of my working career Going back to the photos and in particular the one with the football shield, the chap directly behind was Jimmy Roach a very talented footballer he also had a brother Kenny who also played in the team. I am on the far left in the back line and my brother who worked in the drawing office is 5th from the left. A particular disappointment for me personally was a failure to achieve a more success on the football front. I spent a lot of time travelling straight from work to St Andrews where I played for St Andrews Athletic and also Birmingham City Colts. Our trainer, a guy name Ray Shaw overnight left the club to become manager of Walsall FC where he stayed for 4 years. After that our weekly match fixtures which were sent in the post ceased and like several others that was the end of our association. The one consolation was it was a great experience pity I couldn't say the same about the Villa particularly because I had captained Aston Boys Football Team all through school up until I left aged 15 and although I watched them regularly I did not ever make any trials. Excuse the fact a fair amount of the content is about me personally but there was a lot that happened over the period of 20 years that I enjoyed being with the company and this has been a lasting impression on my working lifetime. Best wishes to you both..

Derek.
 
Hi Phil, Dave, Nice to read that Phil has stumbled across our William Newman exchanges and made an contribution to our past memories. My employment commenced some 13 years before you joined Phil which is perhaps the reason why I do not recognise very many of the names you highlighted. If Gerald Alsopp Training Manager was a tall dark haired guy then he was the same person who arranged my training. In the wages office Mr Boulter was in charge and he was also the company secretary. He had a long standing assistant named Hilda and also other members of staff. My guess was that Hilda might have retired some time after 1975 when I left. Regarding the strikes you mentioned , again this was after I left but probably the nearest disruption I could remember was when we worked a 3 day week due to cuts in power supplies. Regarding your mention of sport, this was something very close to my heart because it was a natural progression from my school days in Aston where I spent most of my time maintaining the schools sporting equipment. I played for several years in the companies Football, Cricket and Snooker teams and I am on most of the photos which I am attaching. That's me collecting the cup and also being held aloft. The cricket photos include Ken Parker in the middle of the front rows, he was the manager of the time and motion study and costing department and was a real cricket playing enthusiast. The photo showing the empty glasses was a trainee presentation and from memory I was given an award for joint top commercial trainee, I am tucked in on the right hand side at the end. In total I spent 2 years at Walsall and Staffordshire Technical College commercial day release and then a further 3 years at West Bromwich College of Commerce and technology studying for a professional qualification a combination of day release and 2 evenings per week. On reflection it was a fair sacrifice because by this time I was married with 2 children, having said that I will be forever grateful for the investment made in me by the company which proved invaluable during the course of my working career Going back to the photos and in particular the one with the football shield, the chap directly behind was Jimmy Roach a very talented footballer he also had a brother Kenny who also played in the team. I am on the far left in the back line and my brother who worked in the drawing office is 5th from the left. A particular disappointment for me personally was a failure to achieve a more success on the football front. I spent a lot of time travelling straight from work to St Andrews where I played for St Andrews Athletic and also Birmingham City Colts. Our trainer, a guy name Ray Shaw overnight left the club to become manager of Walsall FC where he stayed for 4 years. After that our weekly match fixtures which were sent in the post ceased and like several others that was the end of our association. The one consolation was it was a great experience pity I couldn't say the same about the Villa particularly because I had captained Aston Boys Football Team all through school up until I left aged 15 and although I watched them regularly I did not ever make any trials. Excuse the fact a fair amount of the content is about me personally but there was a lot that happened over the period of 20 years that I enjoyed being with the company and this has been a lasting impression on my working lifetime. Best wishes to you both..

Derek.
Hi Derek, your recollections are greatly received. As yet haven't come across your photo's - which I'm hoping will put names to faces. Got to dash right now but will continue later. Kindest regards
 

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
Hi Phil, Dave, It sounds like I might have to send the attachments separately, I will look at it again later and get back to you..
Derek
 

Attachments

Derek.R.Walker

proper brummie kid
Hi Phil ,Dave.
Hopefully the photos will send this time.
Derek.
 

Attachments

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