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Your first job in Coventry

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sally watson
coventry
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1 of 231  Fri 24th Feb 2012 1:21pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2011  Total posts:42

My first job was at the Leigh Mills in Hill St,I was trained as a weaver and I was 15yrs old,and yes I used to go to work with my rollers in my hair,just like my mum and other female workers there,oh! what a laugh when I think back on those times,but most important was my first wage packet a whopping £3! I was rich that day in 1961.
Your first job in Coventry
Tricia
Bedworth
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2 of 231  Fri 24th Feb 2012 2:57pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2011  Total posts:541

My first job was at the GEC (Stoke works). I worked in the Production Control Department as a junior clerk. My main duty was making was making the tea and washing up for the Progress Chasers. On Tuesdays I went to the Tech Annex in Coundon (can someone please tell me the name of the road it was in, as its driving me crazy), for shorthand, typing and office practice lessons. My salary was £2/10s and I remember being called into the boss's office after I'd been there six months to be told that my salary was being increased by 2/3d. Oh my PS I've just remembered I think it was the Brooklyn Annex in Brooklyn Road.
Your first job in Coventry
heritage
Bedworth
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3 of 231  Fri 24th Feb 2012 2:58pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2011  Total posts:374

Hello Sally, Having a keen interest in the history of weaving (especially silk ribbons) could you tell us a bit about your job and Leigh Mills. We have a talk coming up in Bedworth (details to follow) by the works manager from Toye, Kenning and Spencer who still operate in Bedworth. They have just produced all the ribbons for the Queens Jubilee Medal.
Your first job in Coventry
heritage
Bedworth
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4 of 231  Fri 24th Feb 2012 3:02pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2011  Total posts:374

Wasn't the Tech annex in Gaveston Road, more or less where the hostel was. Used to collect my future wife (46 years next month) from there in the 1960s.
Your first job in Coventry
sally watson
coventry
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Thread starter
5 of 231  Fri 24th Feb 2012 3:37pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2011  Total posts:42

On 24th Feb 2012 2:58pm, heritage said: Hello Sally, Having a keen interest in the history of weaving (especially silk ribbons) could you tell us a bit about your job and Leigh Mills.
hi there,leigh mills wove the cloth for suites,they were woven on large looms using big wooden shuttles,depending on the pattern you sometimes used as many as 6 shuttles,these were giants compared to the tiny shuttles used at Cashes where I also worked as a weaver on the ribbons.I think Leigh Mills moved somewhere up north and some of the workers left Coventry and went with them.
Your first job in Coventry
dutchman
Spon End
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6 of 231  Fri 24th Feb 2012 4:20pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2010  Total posts:3000

I only know this from the labels on old maps but Leigh Mills apparently specialised in weaving Worsted cloth. Incidentally, my first job (aged 11, but the owner didn't know that) was petrol pump attendant at Swan Lane garage. I didn't last very long. I enjoyed the work but the long periods of boredom in mid week did my head in.
Your first job in Coventry
Alval59
Courthouse Green Coventry
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7 of 231  Fri 24th Feb 2012 7:12pm  
Member: Joined Feb 2012  Total posts:4

My first job was in Cooksons warehouse in Far Gosford Street. I went for the interview and an old school teacher of mine came in and gave me a reference straight away. It was an old store and had rows and rows of drawers with items in that we had to tidy. We never handled the cash, we had to hand it over to a woman a Little office through a hatch. Because we were on the road to the Coventry City football club, we had to fetch all the buckets and mops, we had on display outside,in and shut shop until after kick off. In those days we sold curtain material by the yard, not metre. The Cookson family had another shop over the road a little further up selling furniture and carpets, and I think they had a shop in the city centre as well Happy
Your first job in Coventry
mayjan
Green Lane,Coventry
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8 of 231  Fri 24th Feb 2012 11:07pm  
Member: Joined Oct 2010  Total posts:258

I left school at 15 years of age and went to work at the BTH in Alma Street. I had no idea what I wanted to do to earn a living so went to the nearest factory and was told I could start the following Monday on the assembley line. I was put on assembling electric motor parts which was very boring and dirty. I had to use red lead paint on some of the parts and was never told to use gloves or warned of any danger,maybe we weren't aware of the danger of lead paint in those days,I am talking about 50 years ago. I left the BTH after a couple of years and worked for a while in Far Gosford Street almost opposite Cooksons Warehouse,at Sketchley Dry Cleaners. I often used to pop into the milk bar for a lovely frothy Horlicks drink. I returned to work at the BTH which had then become the AEI and I worked in the stock control office. How easy it was then to get employment,I feel really sorry for todays youth there are hardly any jobs to be had,such a shame. Thumbs up Wave
Your first job in Coventry
Tricia
Bedworth
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9 of 231  Sat 25th Feb 2012 10:33am  
Member: Joined Jun 2011  Total posts:541

On 24th Feb 2012 3:02pm, heritage said: Wasn't the Tech annex in Gaveston Road, more or less where the hostel was. Used to collect my future wife (46 years next month) from there in the 1960s.
Thanks Heritage, you could be right; my memory is not what it used to be. Thumbs up
Your first job in Coventry
flapdoodle
Coventry
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10 of 231  Sat 25th Feb 2012 2:53pm  
Member: Joined Nov 2010  Total posts:853

1997 at GPT (New Century Park in Stoke) which became Marconi Communications when GEC bought out Siemen's stake, and then Marconi when Lord Simpson sold off most of GEC to concentrate on telecoms. The whole site has now been cleared. Only stayed there for three years - it was a decent company, but I felt didn't want to stay and become like those who'd been there for years. Not that I'd have the chance! The team I worked in survived all the problems and ended up as Ericsson... Now virtually all gone. Worked on the Software for Photonics multiplexers... There was a lot of electronics, telecoms and software skills there. A big loss for the area.
Your first job in Coventry
Jaytob
Derbyshire
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11 of 231  Sun 26th Feb 2012 8:24am  
Member: Joined Jan 2012  Total posts:52

My first job in Coventry was as a punch card operator at GEC (Copsewood). I worked there from 1969 to 1972. I input data which punched holes in a card. The cards were then fed into the computer which was the size of a room and took hours to generate reports. It was hard to imagine in those days that technology would advance so much that nearly every home would have their own computer. I think mobile phones now have the same capability as the huge computers in those days.
Your first job in Coventry
Midland Red
Cherwell
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12 of 231  Sun 26th Feb 2012 11:35am  
Moderator: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:4922

Accounts junior - Wickman, Banner Lane - 1963 - £3.13.4d per week gross (income tax in those days was 8/3d in £1 (= 41.25%!) Oh my
Your first job in Coventry
NeilsYard
Coventry
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13 of 231  Mon 27th Feb 2012 5:08am  
Member: Joined Aug 2010  Total posts:1776

My very first opportunity to earn money post-school (to buy that car!) was on a YTS training course in Graphic Design at the old Courtaulds plant on the Foleshill Road circa mid-80's..... £26.25 per week That came to nothing as Art jobs were rarer then Hens teeth in that era (we had been up to 3 million unemployed!) Hence I moved onto the BAU for a Cov-Kid and ended up a trainee at Talbot culminating in my first official paying job on the track at Ryton building the first Peugeot - the 309.
Your first job in Coventry
BrotherJoybert
Coventry
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14 of 231  Mon 27th Feb 2012 7:20am  
Member: Joined Jan 2010  Total posts:118

YTS (Youth Training Scheme) at Courtaulds, (Courtaulds Small Business Training Scheme) - located in the basement of one of the buildings on the same site as NeilsYard mentions above, 1986-1987. Not very good (apart from the canteen chips and a decent 'Factory Shop') so moved to Focus Drama & Audio Visual YTS at Edgwick. In theory we learned how to act, stage productions and film/edit videos. Top bloke called Peter Bagley was the main man - he's still involved with the Criterion here in Earlsdon - assisted by Pearl Chick. When I started he said "We've all been on Crimewatch!" and put a video on for me to watch. And they had all been on Crimewatch! In a reconstruction of a murder in Leamington Spa - the YTSers as 'extras' in the background of a pub scene with Pete having a 'date' with the murder victim. Peter wasn't the murderer though, it was whoever met the poor lady (RIP) next. This scheme was closed down by Coventry Council 4 months after I joined so I was moved to a different section at Edgwick (Retail I think?) and put out on placement at Newey & Eyre, Aintree Close, Red Lane. When this 'work experience' ended they took me on full-time in 1988 if memory serves. Newey & Eyre's (electrical wholesalers & distributors) warehouse was originally part of the old Ordnance Factory and it was said they could not get planning permission to ever expand it or do building work that involved the foundations because tons of munitions were buried beneath it. No idea if that is true or just an 'urban myth'. I think my first proper wage was probably about £90 a week - paid monthly though. Sega Megadrive with Sonic the Hedgehog was what I spent a fair chunk of my first wage packet on. Thumbs up Newey & Eyre have since moved to a newish purpose built building on the former Courtaulds site! Pretty much built on the same spot where I did my first YTS!
Your first job in Coventry
Kimbo
Chapel st. Leonards
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15 of 231  Mon 27th Feb 2012 11:31am  
Member: Joined Feb 2012  Total posts:56

Mine was an apprenticeship at Herberts' at the Apprentice Training Centre within the Light Engineering Dept at Edgwick. However, If we're including 'school' jobs I did Saturdays for a while at Sainsbury's and then did about six or eight weeks on the forecourt of the petrol station under the West Orchard car park when I left Woodlands at the end of my GCEs. This took me up to the Cov Holiday Fortnight in Wells next the Sea, and thence the 3rd August when I started at Herberts'....
Your first job in Coventry

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