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Made in Coventry

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jmn43
casa grande arizona
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31 of 41  Sat 16th Nov 2013 1:01pm  
Member: Joined Jul 2011  Total posts:18

On 13th Nov 2013 8:32pm, Old Lincolnian said:
On 31st Oct 2013 9:08pm, Mick Strong said: I worked for a while at Wickmans in Upper York Street (next to the abbatoir), At the bottom of York Street was a company called Winfrey, anyone know what they made there?
Hi Mick. The Winfrey Building was part of the Butts Tech where the electronic courses took place. I had several years of evening classes there and although the building was a bit tatty the teaching was excellent. I don't know whether it was named after a company or not.
The Winfrey in the topic is named after the owner of Winfrey Engineering. I worked at the company in the early sixties. The company did sub contract work for Dowty Mining Co. By the way is Dowty still in business? I remember they had massive building on the Coventry Road in Exhall.
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
flapdoodle
Coventry
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32 of 41  Sat 16th Nov 2013 1:29pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2010  Total posts:889

On 16th Nov 2013 1:54am, Amarveer said: Why has Coventry lost its mojo and how can it be reignited in such a time of economic hardship and high unemployment?
There are numerous books around that will help you. As you are doing academic research, I suggest starting with a copy of this book: Life and Labour in a 20th Century City: The Experience of Coventry Bill Lancaster & Tony Mason [Editors] Published by Cryfield Press, Coventry (1986-06) This is a series of papers about Coventry, with a few chapters about the post-war decline. Coventry grew too quickly and became reliant on a handful of major employers for mass-employment, and certainly in the motor industry the city's factories were too small and generally became candidates for closure when the downturn came - plus the lack of diverse local economy (No services, no large organisations as Coventry was not the centre of a metropolitan region or a country town, no creative industries, etc) meant there was little way to soak up job losses. When the aircraft industry closed in the 1960s, the 'warnings' were ignored and no attempt was made to diversify, instead the motor industry was used to soak up the job losses. The city has effectively missed out on the 'high tech' industries (Marconi all went years ago) as this had tended to be concentrated around the M4 corridor and Reading. Coventry is now heavily reliant on the public sector and two universities. One thing I would investigate is whether it would be possible to make Coventry into the 'administrative' centre of Warwickshire (Whilst retaining Warwick as the traditional County town - similar to Lancashire, with Preston and Lancaster) and improve the transport infrastructure between Coventry and Warwickshire - there's already an economic dependency there, as Coventry's out of town business parks are good for commuters. This would also create large organisations for public services that could be based in Coventry. The alternative is that Coventry continues its decline and moves towards being a remote part of a 'greater Birmingham'. Being stuck between Warwick and Birmingham is not a good place to be. Friargate could potentially become like the 'financial' sector in Bournemouth, although I tend to suspect that Birmingham will suck up all those jobs, and I don't think Coventry being bypassed by HS2 is particularly helpful - although this city has had quick links to London for years and it's not made much difference.
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
School Bully 2
Bristol
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33 of 41  Fri 29th Nov 2013 7:20pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2013  Total posts:9

On 27th Oct 2013 5:48pm, Mick Strong said: There was also, Rolls - Royce, Coventry Radiator, Thomas Bushill, Unbrako, Rotherhams, Torrington Bearings, Lawton Tube, Dunlop, GEC, Self Change Gears, Courtaulds, Renold Chain Cannot believe we have let most of this slip away.
Lack of investment was the killer. Old factories, old machine tools, old infrastructure. I did a full four year Technician Apprenticeship at Self-Changing Gears from 84 to 88. The writing was on the wall at that time. Like a lot of Coventry's small engineering companies, they had sold a lot of kit in the sixties and early seventies, but had never made any real profit. The spares business was keeping them afloat in the eighties, but they weren't selling much new build kit. Of course, it was only a matter of time before the spares business dried up and so did the company. I actually pointed this out at a staff briefing session once, and oh how they laughed at this smart-arse apprentice who knew it all at seventeen. The first year of my apprenticeship was at the training school at Alvis on Holyhead Road and that company was one of the few who managed to transition from an old and antiquated factory to a new facility and survive. The principal reason I left Coventry 20 years ago was, as an engineer, there simply wasn't enough work around. Edited by member, 29th Nov 2013 7:35 pm
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
Annewiggy
Tamworth
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34 of 41  Wed 4th Dec 2013 3:56pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2013  Total posts:1790

25th September 1953 in the Central Hall. A talk was given by Mr W H Lindsey, director and chief engineer of Armstrong Siddeley to the members of the Freeman's Guild and the public. A Mamba turbo-prop engine.
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
pixrobin
Canley
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35 of 41  Fri 4th Apr 2014 10:43pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2014  Total posts:1137

A friend has loaned me some bound volumes of the Daily Mirror from the years 1910-1918. These adverts show that few workers would be able to afford the products they made.
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
TonyS
Coventry
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36 of 41  Sat 5th Apr 2014 7:23am  
Member: Joined Jan 2011  Total posts:1568

Good grief, the original cost of such items never ceases to amaze me! I've done a quick conversion and these items, at these prices, today would cost you. Humber motorcycle - £4636 to £5135 Rudge-Whitworth = £35 per month Triumph - £673 to £1346 O'Brien - £349 or just £25 per month! How on earth did anybody ever afford to buy them!
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
Mike H
London Ontario, Canada
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37 of 41  Sat 5th Apr 2014 10:04am  
Member: Joined Apr 2012  Total posts:413

They didn't, couldn't is the simple answer. These products weren't made for the masses. They were made for discerning people of substance. The common man was expected to walk. If these products had been made too cheap, the common man would become weak, feeble.

In any case, the mill, pit and factory owners invariably provided lots of substandard housing such that the common man wouldn't have to walk too far. It was only if the common man got ideas above his station that he might need some form of mechanised transport..

Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
pixrobin
Canley
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38 of 41  Sat 5th Apr 2014 10:57pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2014  Total posts:1137

I live in one of those houses but built in 1911 so local council kept an overseeing eye. It has been modernised so does have inside toilet and bathroom. It would not be more than 3/4 mile to any of the mills in Accrington. It's downhill to get you to work on time in the morning but an uphill struggle after a 12hr shift. Wink People forget that the unions did a great deal for the pay and conditions of the workers over the last century.
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
PhilipInCoventry
Holbrooks
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39 of 41  Tue 12th Aug 2014 1:50pm  
Moderator: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:4394

Hi all Wave Some positive news, I hope The old Brico
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
Prof
Gloucester
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40 of 41  Sat 30th Aug 2014 10:13pm  
Member: Joined Jul 2014  Total posts:1495

My grandfather, H W Kendall, was involved with early trade unions in Coventry and was elected to represent the United Machine Workers at a national gathering in Westminster Central Hall during WW1 when Lloyd George had accused Trades Union Officials of sending a circular to watch and annoy a certain man with a view to retarding output at the Ordnance Works. In fact the workforce was working flat out to achieve the output required for weaponry.
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry
Prof
Gloucester
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41 of 41  Fri 3rd Apr 2020 9:07pm  
Member: Joined Jul 2014  Total posts:1495

My grandad, HW Kendall, left Grantham for Coventry in 1905 to work at the Ordnance Works. He was a skilled toolmaker, seen in this photo in a bowler hat next to the girl with tambourine. My grandma, Mary is the fourth lady from left front beside the float. Herbert may have been the Secretary of the Group, as he was later involved with early Trade Unions. Photo perhaps 1912-13.
Industry, Business and Work - Made in Coventry

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