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VSW004 Nanette Lloyd, John Patterson Tablecloth Factory (aka John Pattinson and Fairweather works), PonthenriAfter leaving school at 15 she became a waitress and worked in a shoe shop before starting in the factory c.1953, printing tablecloths. If you spoiled the work it came out of your pay. She mentions the unhealthy smell of the paint (dye); earning £20 a week; carrying heavy rolls affecting her periods. She had a nasty accident because she wasn’t wearing rubber wellingtons. No union. The Pont-henri factory was built for coalminers with silicosis but the paint fumes were too strong. She believes that the company’s workers in Birmingham earned more than them. The cloths were sent all over the world and the girls put messages in with the orders to get pen-friends. The workers smelled of thinners. They stole bleach to clean their nails She learned to dance in the cloakroom. She left when her mother died to keep house for her father and brothers. Some verbal harassment of young boys in the factory. Singing on a Friday. Taking a float to Pont-henri carnival. Drinks at Xmas.
Part of this interview is available as an audio file