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Wigan Album

CATTERALL

65 Comments

Royal Ordnance, Chorley.
Photo: Philip G.
Views: 2,116
Item #: 31848
Photo by courtesy of Veronica Biggadike.

Comment by: Veronica on 26th January 2020 at 20:13

The year 1968, ladies working on fuses. Just one of the 'shops' on the HE section. The women In white are examining them. I am on the left turning round, wondering what's going on - it's unusual to be photographed! I found this photograph in a book in the old Smiths on Market St in the nineties, the factory had gone by then. I could not believe it as there was so much secrecy at the factory.

Comment by: irene roberts on 27th January 2020 at 12:05

Trust you to be noseying, Our Veronica! Brilliant photo. xx

Comment by: Veronica on 27th January 2020 at 13:41

It was what you could call ' stepping back in time' Irene, those clothes everybody is wearing would do nicely for the 40's events!!! Nothing changed from Wartime. The lady in the middle sat down,came from Standish. Hundreds came from Wigan especially, to work there and many other areas as far as Blackpool and Preston etc....
Should have said Smiths on Mesnes St not Market St.

Comment by: Philip G. on 27th January 2020 at 18:21

What was it for dinners Veronica … 'haversack rations', or something more gradely in the canteen? You've never said.

Comment by: Veronica on 27th January 2020 at 20:30

Actually proper cooked dinners that were subsidised, liver and bacon with mash and over cooked veg. 2s... Sticks in my memory... All the usual old fashioned meals. Just like the Forces during the war, nothing rationed!! Paid every Friday, lining up in the canteen. Quite well paid too. Free travel, clothing, even shoes... Not a bad place to work if you didn't think about what you were working with! Being young and carefree thought nothing about it... I really liked my time there, many worked there from the war period. Interesting tales they would talk about... I will never forget, it was like another world compared to today. Mind you a lot of workplaces then were different to today.
Thanks for your interest Philip, I'm sure you have fond memories of your working life when young.

Comment by: irene roberts on 27th January 2020 at 21:32

Come on, Philip, G.....Veronica and Irene await your canteen memories!

Comment by: Philip G. on 27th January 2020 at 21:56

Thanks for telling more about your working life at the 'Factory, Veronica.

Comment by: jack on 27th January 2020 at 22:32

Always remember my Mam telling stories about working night turn during second world war

Comment by: Veronica on 27th January 2020 at 23:24

Not meaning to be disrespectful some of the women looked old even though they were'nt 60 - strangely I still think they look old to me even though I'm older than them now. In those days generations mixed more in the work place. I recall some men who had served in the First World War. One in particular Tommy from Blackrod told me he joined up at 15 telling a lie about his age. Men then worked until 65 and I remember him retiring. I just remember a lot of jollity and camaraderie. I wouldn't have missed it for the world and my working life has been quite versatile.

Comment by: Philip G. on 28th January 2020 at 01:41

My work's canteen memories?, Irene. Strewth!
OK, then, what about our canteen lady who'd got wind of the fact that I'd collected cigarette and trade cards (Kellogg's, Brooke Bond, Bubble gum, etc.), for starters.
She'd told me that her young grandson had had the same interest (Brooke Bond.), and had also given me his 'wants list', which enabled me to complete a particular set for him, and for which he'd sent his thanks.
And the occasion when my brother had been given a 'genuine' tip for the 1982 One Thousand Guineas - a horse called On the House - and despite me passing on that information to our canteen's two diehard punters, both had decided to back against it. Did it win? … of course, it did, and at the stonking price of 33/1.
And even the occasion (Not canteen based.) when I'd nipped out of work mid-afternoon to see Lester win the 1968 (There's that year again.) Epsom Derby on Sir Ivor, on a neighbouring pub's T.V.
Lester maintains that Sir Ivor is the best he's ridden, and that the French-trained Sea Bird ll is the best he's ever seen.
I hope that you and Veronica enjoy my very brief forage into my 'canteen past', and that that trio won't spoil Veronica's canvas.

Comment by: Veronica on 28th January 2020 at 08:29

You would have felt at home in our canteen Philip..with Big Elsie and Johnny Glover studying the horse racing pages of the Daily Mirror. I've often wondered how they put bets on when they couldn't leave the workplace without special chitties to leave before 3 30! It was like trying to get leave from Colditz...

Comment by: Irene Roberts on 28th January 2020 at 09:08

Thanks, Philip. Brilliant stories! I remember the collections of cigarette cards and cards in packets of tea. Corner shops always had metal signs on their walls advertising Brooke Bond Tea, I have one on my backyard wall advertising it with 4d off! I also have some original paper bags advertising Brooke Bond Tea. I agree with Veronica on the fact that women used to look older than they were. I think make-up, (or lack of it) , hairstyles and clothes-styles added to that.

Comment by: Veronica on 28th January 2020 at 12:46

Irene believe it or not I was flabbergasted at the amount of make up the older ladies wore at Euxton. It was used as a barrier against the powder in the atmosphere,there were strict rules to use barrier creams and powders provided in dispensers all over the factory on what was known as ' on the lines'. Instead they would use their own make up. If not, there were cases of rashes and God knows what. 'Big Elsie' sat near me on the picture would apply her lipstick which went into a point after eating, in the dinner break and powder puff her face, before studying form in the paper! I have never seen since, such garish made up faces! It was like being on a stage lot in Hollywood! But they were happy days, I had more fun in those five years than in any job in offices or shops and hospital.

Comment by: irene roberts on 28th January 2020 at 15:39

I'm amazed at that, Veronica. And yet they looked, (to our eyes), older than they were. Some of my memories under the walking-day photo, Veronica and Philip. xx

Comment by: Valerie Cooper( Walls) on 28th January 2020 at 20:22

I used to work at RO in No 1 shed I loved it, the camaraderie was great but they were quite strict about safety. Your right about food, it was quite good. Who can complain about the place....even transport laid on. I finished about 1969 because I was pregnant.. Again WHAT memories

Comment by: Barrie. on 29th January 2020 at 11:43

My sister (who is 12 years older than me), when working at Leyland Motors in the early& mid 50's, used to go dancing at the ROF Euxton(Chorley) then travel back to Standish on the last Ribble bus heading for Wigan. I was only a "nipper" then so don't remember much about it. It is also interesting to find that on old maps from the war years ROF factory is not shown as it was classified information.

Comment by: Maureen on 29th January 2020 at 11:45

My Mam worked there and loved every minute,she was there for a number of years,I do remember the time she got pernicious anaemia,put down to working with Cordite.Valerie,I know it was a big place. .but would you know the name Ann McGovern..I'm sure she was a blue band.

Comment by: Veronica on 29th January 2020 at 13:48

I ended up with anaemia Maureen after being tested at work, I still have the letter saying I had to see my own doctor. I remember a young chap on the management side who told me I should get away from Euxton, I didn't take much notice though. I did find out I had a rare blood group, I had to eat a fair amount of liver and take iron tablets!

Comment by: Maureen on 29th January 2020 at 15:30

Veronica,come to think of it..I obviously don't know what blood group you are..but all I know is that my Mam did bleed too much ch if ever she had a cut..it does make you wonder doesn't it.

Comment by: Accky on 29th January 2020 at 16:51

Read somewhere recently that Euxton during WW2 was the biggest employer in Britain, employed that is in one factory. The article mentioned that somewhere around 28,000 worked there on various shifts during the war.

Comment by: Veronica on 29th January 2020 at 19:05

The book I found in Smiths all about Euxton ROF costs about £80 to buy on the Internet. I eventually got the library to borrow it for me, it was only then I found out about anaemia being a condition you were susceptible to working there Maureen. I don't know what actually caused it really...I was on Inspection, I didn't actually handle the stuff that went into filling them. The book is really interesting, I found out more by reading it than, I knew working there. The Bouncing Bombs that the Dam-Busters dropped were filled at Euxton during the war....

Comment by: Philip G. on 29th January 2020 at 21:06

Didn't know about the Bouncing Bombs having been filled at your factory, Veronica - 19 of 'em', since noticed.
I remember our coach driver squeezing-in Ladybower Reservoir on our return from Chatsworth, a few years ago, and also his mention of the 'water having been used for some of the Bombers' practise runs.
Boys Own stuff for sure, yet a far cry from dad's earlier attempt at shooting down an air ship with his catapult as it flew over 'Ashton-in-Makerfield'.

Comment by: Mr X on 29th January 2020 at 21:23

The Royal Ordnance factory covered a huge area between the A6 at Chorley and the A49 at Leyland, now it is an upmarket residential area called Buckshaw Village with a few shops and stores. I don't know anyone who worked there but was there a very small man only about four foot six that I have seen his picture in a Bygone Chorley book, and did he live in Higher Ince. If this was the same man I haven't seen him since the 1990s, very likely to be deceased.

Comment by: XPat on 29th January 2020 at 21:24

Did the skin of any of the workers ( what was their work title Munitionette or something ) turn yellow like the Canary Girls ?

Comment by: Valerie Cooper on 29th January 2020 at 21:26

Sorry Maureen, don't remember that name, but as you said it was a VERY big place.

Comment by: Veronica on 29th January 2020 at 21:41

There was a very short, disabled man who worked there and he had a beautiful singing voice, he didn't live at Ince though, he lived in the Chorley area.
The yellow skin was from an earlier time. I never saw anyone with that condition, barrier creams were used though.

Comment by: linma on 29th January 2020 at 22:09

Goodness knows what's still underground there, wouldn't live in one of those houses for all the tea in China.

Comment by: Wigwann on 1st February 2020 at 01:33

I read the comments below with interest as my mum worked there in WW2 She also had pernicious anaemia,she needed iron injections when I was born in '48 and ten years later when my brother was born. He developed it in his 40's.
My mum always talked about the times there with great affection as she had many friends. She was putting detonators into the head of the shells, terrifying to think about now. She once told me,I made 'em and your Dad fired 'em!(He was overseas with the Loyal North Lancs. at the time.

Comment by: Veronica on 1st February 2020 at 09:15

Those fuses went into the heads of the shells which contained detonators Wiganner. There was various fuses, some were made of brass. My job was to examine the markings and dates etc on them, also where I am on the photograph, I am 'spinning' detonators on a machine to make sure they 'open' . They went inside the fuses. If there were accidents on other sections it was very hush hush, and not talked about! I don't think you do worry about that sort of thing when you are young. Your mum probably worked on the section where the shells were filled with these components. Although I worked on the inspection side, all that work was inspected by 'spot check' which is being done by the woman stood up in the photo.

Comment by: Wigwann on 1st February 2020 at 14:57

Thanks for that information, Veronica, always keen to hear more of mum's working life.Do you know anything about an incident involving the windows of the building being broken one late afternoon by a returning enemy plane firing through them?
Mum said she wasn't there either on a different shift or in another department, but she said her best friend lost two fingers in the incident either from flying glass or shrapnel.

Comment by: Veronica on 1st February 2020 at 16:34

I would see if you could borrow the book about ROF Chorley Wiggwan from the library, I'm sure they would be able to get it for you. There's a lot of pictures in it from the war period and it's quite interesting. It's very expensive to buy on the Internet. The one I got was from Chorley Library and was sent to Westhoughton. They can get books from all over the country these days. I didn't know about that particular accident you speak of. I recall the air raid shelters though. I had relatives who worked there during the war as well. Women and girls could choose to work there rather than go into the forces I think. They earned plenty money but nothing to spend it on!!! There were concerts held in the canteens, the stage was still there where I worked. A lot of the men were ex- service men when I worked there as well, even ex FEPOW's. Just as I started work there coaches were used to pick the workers up, previous to that trains were used to bring them in from all over. The railway lines were still there. I don't know anybody who didn't like working there. It tells you something that they stayed on after the war, but it would have been impossible to keep everybody on. I don't suppose there will ever be places like the ROF ever again.....the book is a very historical insight into the war period.

Comment by: xpat on 1st February 2020 at 16:43

This is absolutely fascinating! The more information you reveal Veronica the more interesting and intriguing it becomes . Makes me wonder how the
selection process worked for those who worked there ? Looks like people
who were not only intelligent and able , but more importantly, knew how to keep their gobs shut to order . Fascinating! More please Veronica , If you are allowed ..

Thanks for posting Philip

Comment by: RON HUNT on 1st February 2020 at 17:09

There is a bookshop in Germany selling the book for £25.00 plus £8.32 postage

Comment by: Bob on 1st February 2020 at 18:44

Think it’s more simple than that XPat . Those who rose to the challenge because they had to . Doubt you would get that today , completely different world now. This picture is about men and women who stood ground !

Comment by: Veronica on 1st February 2020 at 20:21

I don't think I have contravened the Official Secrets Act, which we had to sign,at least I hope not xpat. Although I did once blot my copy book. We were searched for contraband every day from going into the ' Shifting House' where we changed our outside clothes to our working clothes before going onto ' the lines' and after lunch breaks. The clothes consisted of turban, white overall and Rosa Klebb lace up shoes. We couldn't have hair grips, clips or anything metal on our person.( the search was mainly for cigarettes and matches, I think) One particular morning I left a plastic roller in my long hair, in my audacity I did not think I would be found out, but I was unfortunately. I was hauled up in front of two bosses and made to write an essay as to the reason I broke a rule so serious! Fortunately I got off with it, by saying I had forgotten to take it out of my hair, anyway it was only plastic and not metal! There must be an archive somewhere with that buried essay, I would love to see it again! Being young and daft I think was the reason I got away with it....

Comment by: Wigwann on 1st February 2020 at 22:33

Many thanks once again for your interesting comments. At the time my mum worked there she was lodging with her sister in Newton le Willows because, as I understood there was transport to the factory from Newton. I will certainly look out for the book, thanks for the recommendation. Love your roller story! My mum had long hair then so she would have had to tie it up. I have a picture of her taken after work. She has on a shirt with a man's tie and turban. Tres chic.

Comment by: GrahamN on 4th February 2020 at 00:26

Talking about canteens Veronica, do you remember this was the only place you were allowed to smoke, and because you were not allowed matches or any naked flame small metal boxes which had heated asbestos tubes inside were affixed to walls, you then put your cigarette in your mouth inserted the the cigarette into the heated tube and sucked it alight!!.
As regards your concern about the secrets act, from what you say you were a in the CIA department, known affectionately as Churchills Idle Army😊

Comment by: Veronica on 4th February 2020 at 08:55

Graham: I had forgotten about those contraptions on the wall- probably because I don't smoke myself. Yes, I was another branch of Churchill's Idle Army. I think it was formed before I started work there. It was called
F.I.D. ( Factory Inspection Department) paid by the Army. The CIA inspected what we inspected !!! I can see why they were called that. I felt fortunate because the ROF workers had to work hard to earn their bonus and we were paid a set wage. If you worked there you would understand what happened when I got caught with the one roller in my hair. Happy times though and great people to work with, I made some lovely friends there.

Comment by: Veronica on 4th February 2020 at 09:08

Ps. Graham we were distinguished from the CIA with our turbans - theirs were red, ours were red and white stripes! So charming! They did nothing for hairstyles... Also when we were let loose at home time on the coach park in our ordinary clothes you had a job recognising people. A lot of well dressed people!

Comment by: GrahamN on 4th February 2020 at 12:04

Veronica, you jogged the memory banks a when you mentioned Big Elsie ( lovely woman) and Johnny Glover (Little Jonny). John drove a "Dilly" the electric trucks which ferried the components around the production shops, and as a consequence acted as newsboy and would let you know if the DBI was on the group. The Danger Building Inspector could take any operative to one side and search for contraband, is any article that was not allowed on the 'clean side' .....for example curlers...
With regard to the colour coded overalls that had to be worn and which had to be specially laundered on site it was a test, especially to the younger girls to appear smart, and it was impossible to wear the headscarf as was required with ALL of the hair tucked under, see the photo with everybody with a fringe,.....which by the way turned yellow if you worked in any of the powder shops.Looking back we had some happy times .

Comment by: Veronica on 4th February 2020 at 13:45

Graham if you were there between 65 and 70 I must have seen you. Didn't Johnny Glover torment Big Elsie? I used to die laughing at them and she played the piano beautifully. They would argue about the horses! He was always speaking in 'double entendres' he could be very cheeky. When I hear the song 'The Autumn Leaves' I remember him! They were both very comical! Elsie had worked there during the war as well. I did see her a few times in Wigan after I left the ROF as her aged mother was in Frog Lane Hospital. It was lovely seeing her. They must all be dead by now, sadly.

Comment by: GrahamN on 5th February 2020 at 12:53

Hi Veronica yes there's every chance we may have walked the cleanways together, I worked on G lines in the early sixties on maintenance, the stemming machines in G8 I fondly remember, the overlooker was a kindly old lady named Rose, some things stick in your mind, do you recall the Wallis twins, they both were in the CIA.
The system of putting a bet on the horses was done by using a 'bookies runner' in group 3s case it was Bob McArthy in the fitters shop, Johnny Glover was a go between for the girls in the production shops. Do you recognise the shop you're photographed in? The fuses on the bench look like L29s........how do I remember that!!,

Comment by: Veronica on 5th February 2020 at 15:34

The shop was either H3 or 4 Graham. We were moved about every few weeks, sometimes I worked in G7 and G12. When it was raining or cold we had to wear long cloaks with hoods attached! We looked like refugees walking about the lines. The fitters wore dark green ' uniform' I remember.
Come to think of it that Johnny knew everything that was going on! He only came up to Big Elsie's elbow, she certainly knew how to keep him in his place! They were a comedy duo and she reminded me of Big Amy the police woman as she was over 6ft tall... I loved Friday afternoons when the ROF finished their work early and cleaned up, we would have an hour just chatting before finishing, it was great! So many interesting characters to work with. A different era completely to nowadays!

Comment by: GrahamN on 7th February 2020 at 11:32

Ahh G12 ! during my time on group 3 we installed a machine in this shop, designed and made at Chorley which would automate the pressing of the fuze component. I was the young fitter who spent many hours on this troublesome machine.
Many production shops on G lines were all women, and as a young man you could be subject to quite a bit of 'banter', all good fun!.....couldn't happen in today's climate

Comment by: Veronica on 7th February 2020 at 14:31

I remember being in G12 when Buzz Aldred landed on the moon and when 'the troubles' in Ireland began again! At that time I was working with a lady I had christened 'Irish' Mary ( who was so nice)and a young Irish man who's name I have forgotten. I thought to myself - I mustn't mention anything about the troubles....They may have opposing views!

Comment by: AlanL on 8th February 2020 at 17:56

Hi Veronica. Sorry to contradict your comment, but those fuzes were base fuzes, not nose fuzes.
I also remember Johnny Glover. He was a bit of a rascal at times.

Comment by: Veronica on 8th February 2020 at 19:41

I don't mind at all Alan to be honest, I don't know what happened to them when they left the section. The brass fuses were more pointed, perhaps they went into the noses. I don't think any of us knew what went on - on any of the other sections! Yes he was a humdinger that Johnny, he was the only one who wore clogs as well. He was a very good singer though... It's fifty years ago now so I suppose a lot of those older ones are no longer with us...it was a unique place to work and I have never forgotten the people I worked with.

Comment by: AlanL on 9th February 2020 at 11:47

Hi Veronica,
I moved about quite a bit, starting on Time & pyro ending on R&D. I really enjoyed my time on G lines though. Did you ever know Eric lloyd? He ended up as Foreman Group 2. I was there at Johnny's retirement 'do'. Typical Johnny type occasion. He was a loss to the group when he retired.

Comment by: Veronica on 9th February 2020 at 13:25

It sounds as if you were after my time Alan.. The only Eric I knew was a bench leader in G7 on FID. He was an ex policeman. I recall a charge hand Jack Ollerton from Parbold in H3 or 4. I remember a lot of the ladies, I can see their faces but some of the names escape me. I remember at lot of the CIA's by name. One in particular Dorothy Speak from Blackrod related to the Furniture business. Very glamorous! A lot of the people who I worked with came to watch my wedding at St Pats and some came to my hen party at the Emp. I only wish I had photos of that event...

Comment by: AlanL on 10th February 2020 at 13:08

Looks like I was after your time, Veronica. Do you know Tommy Mills? If you ever met him, you'd remember him.

Comment by: Veronica on 10th February 2020 at 23:23

Sorry Alan I don't know that name - there was some 'rum' characters though...

Comment by: GrahamN on 10th February 2020 at 23:56

Alan were you on Time section when Monty Hemmings was Shop Manager? When he retired rumour had it he invested some of his gratuity into his sons efforts to become a house builder,with another lad named Kent.

Comment by: AlanL on 11th February 2020 at 12:39

Hi Graham, Sorry, Monty Hemmings had retired before I arrived. Can't remember the Shop Manager, but Eric lloyd was one of the Foremen.

Comment by: GrahamN on 13th February 2020 at 20:05

Hi Alan, had to mention that Monty's son Trevor from those humble beginnings has gone on to become one of the richest men in Britain,

Comment by: Veronica on 17th February 2020 at 07:45

Do either of you recall the Ablutions where everyone stood to wash their hands. They were similar to fountains, the soap turned hands red as you were washing. The idea was to rinse until the water ran clear. Everyone washed before going on breaks and leaving for home. I can't remember if men had their own Ablution building, I only recall women in the one I went to. I wonder what happened to the fountains when the place was demolished... They would have been worth something I'm sure.

Comment by: GrahamN on 18th February 2020 at 00:29

I think the 'ablution' buildings were, (to use modern terms) gender neutral!
They were stand-alone buildings, usually contained two large round wash basins, as a fitter working on the stemming machines I would frequently use them to clean off the oil grease and CE. Do you recall the selection of 'barrier creams' each ablution contained on a shelf usually under a mirror, they had the rather glorious name of 'prophylactics'

Comment by: Veronica on 18th February 2020 at 08:48

I only remember the soap, as it lathered it looked as if there was blood on the hands. No I don't remember the names of any of the cleaning materials Graham. The washing facilities were huge round 'basins' where quite a few people congregated. Everything was really old fashioned..there was always a queue at the canteen doors before they opened on the dot! That was the only time you noticed others who you didn't work with. I remember the managers who used to come round every morning. They would always speak to people individually. I remember Peggy Coyle and Percy Cunliffe who were over us lot! They reminded me of Batman and Robin. There was another chap over the ROF who marched round like a soldier, he always wore a trilby. They didn't stay in the shops long, mind you they had a lot of shops to go around to.

Comment by: Veronic on 18th February 2020 at 09:01

Ps there's a photo of me in my Catterall ancestry under People and it's at the time I worked at the ROF , you may recognise me, although I'm not wearing a turban ! ;o))

Comment by: AlanL on 20th February 2020 at 12:41

You're both quite right. The ablutions were for both men and women, had a large basin and a fountain in the centre. The CE soap did indeed turn red, and the CE workers did turn yellow. No need for sunbeds there. The ablutions were demolished along with all the other buildings, but I agree that the wash basins and the fountains would have been worth saving.
Veronica, I knew a chap called Percy Cunliffe, but it was years later. I don't know if it was the same man, the one I knew came from Wigan and had bad arthritis.

Comment by: GrahamN on 20th February 2020 at 14:23

Lovely photo Veronica, sorry I don't recognise you, beginning to think maybe I left 3 just before you came on the group, I moved up to group 8 around 1965 and then joined the newly formed GW group in 1968.
You look too young to be on the explosive group, as I remember you had to be 18. I do remember the name Percy Cunliffe wasn't he a tall chap, nice attitude and I think your right Alan about him being a Wiganer. Was Tommy Mills an avid Wigan Rugby supporter.
When I started work at Euxton we travelled by special train from Wigan North West departing at 06:33 which went via Red Rock thro' Adlington to the factory station named Chorley Halt. Everyone used the same compartment every day, even the same seat, so we had the same travelling companions. I moved from Whelley to Blackrod in 1964 and then travelled by Grays coach from New Springs. I think the rail line through Red Rock was a victim of the Beeching cuts.

Comment by: GrahamN on 20th February 2020 at 16:05

Lovely photo Veronica, sorry I don't recognise you, beginning to think maybe I left 3 just before you came on the group, I moved up to group 8 around 1965 and then joined the newly formed GW group in 1968.
You look too young to be on the explosive group, as I remember you had to be 18. I do remember the name Percy Cunliffe wasn't he a tall chap, nice attitude and I think your right Alan about him being a Wiganer. Was Tommy Mills an avid Wigan Rugby supporter.
When I started work at Euxton we travelled by special train from Wigan North West departing at 06:33 which went via Red Rock thro' Adlington to the factory station named Chorley Halt. Everyone used the same compartment every day, even the same seat, so we had the same travelling companions. I moved from Whelley to Blackrod in 1964 and then travelled by Grays coach from New Springs. I think the rail line through Red Rock was a victim of the Beeching cuts.

Comment by: Veronica i on 20th February 2020 at 17:43

It was May '65 when I started work there Graham, I was 19. We went by coach from Scholes, it was funny how we kept the same seats. I sat near a lovely lady named Peggy Gorman. I can't recall the section she worked on. She always wore full-make up. Percy Cunliffe was a tall chap from Standish I believe. He was quite amiable and always a word for everyone. In those days I blushed if a boss spoke to me though!! I got that job at Euxton just by ringing up and asking if there was any vacancies, I was told to report to Admin on a certain date and went by bus to Chorley and another bus to Euxton. It seemed like a long interview and medical examination, then was told to start and spent about a fortnight at an Induction place away from the lines. Can't remember much about what the induction was about, but it would have been about safety I would think.

Comment by: Ian McLoughlin on 29th February 2020 at 21:13

Lovely pictures - my mum worked there from the very early 60s to her retirement in about 1983; her name was May McLoughlin and she too had pernicious anaemia, along with yellow skin when she was working in powder. The names I remember her saying were Kitty Meehan; Nellie Cumberbatch and Nellie Rowlands. My grandfather Harry Whittle, worked - as a dolly driver? And I also knew Maurice Wilcocks who worked in inspection.

I bought the book you refer to for my mum (when it was only about £22!) and still have it on my shelves

Comment by: Veronica on 1st March 2020 at 18:26

Ian I remember your mum, she was a lovely lady. I also remember Kitty Meehan and Nellie Rowlands. I saw your mum on a bus going from Leigh to Horwich, a few years ago, we were chatting away,I recognised her straight away, although she didn't remember me right away. She worked in G7 mainly , I remember her sparkling eyes! I am sorry she is no longer here. Rest in Peace May. Kitty and Nellie were two characters, I loved working with them, they were so comical...I often think of those people.

Comment by: Ian McLoughlin on 1st March 2020 at 20:57

Thank you Veronica - a lovely thing to say, yes, she did have lovely eyes … think she got them from me! 😂

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