I began with Lotus, (then Edwin Bostock & Co.) at the age of thirteen in 1911. At this time all shoes made here were either welted or machine sewn. I was called up for the army when I was eighteen, and in March 1918 I was taken prisoner at Arras, France. I restarted work at the beginning of 1919.
Stuck on shoes were introduced in 1937 or 8 and I began operating the stick on soles press. The second war came, and I was asked to form a team of men for maintenance work in the factory and labouring work in the shell factory. All this work was carried out at night and weekends.
During the war I worked closely with Mr Mercer in developing a new process for bonding soles to uppers, this was called the sole softening process. Eventually, I was put in charge of the stuck on plant.
In 1947 I was sent to Northern Ireland to help in the Banbridge factory. A little later on I was persuaded to Join Vik Supplies to take our new sole softening process into factories all over the country demonstrating.
It is now two years since my retirement, but I can look back on a very interesting, and sometimes exciting 52 years.
Retirement meant a big change, but I am enjoying it.