Return to 1975-1979

Vision 126

These three “tigers” from PED Electronics — Tony Knight, Danny Haines and John Miles — won the Ron Morfee Cup in the recent interdepartmental golf tournament.
Says John, seen demonstrating a recovery shot: “There’s no truth in the rumour that we electronic types use radar to find a ball in the rough.”
With around 100 members from all over the site, the RX Golf Society is the biggest section within the Sports & Social Club, and it’s still growing.
Alistair Caldwell (whose report on
the tournament appears on page 11) told us there has been an increase of 10 per cent plus in membership over the last year, though for some reason no lady has yet applied to join.
What’s the attraction of the game? The healthy outdoor life, the personal sense of achievement in beating the course, the apres-golf at the 19th hole?
Perhaps it’s the exciting things that happen on the way round the course. Like the time when Brian Wragg got a ‘birdie’, not that he holed out in
one under par — he actually hit a bird in flight with his tee shot.
Or the day RXGS so to speak ‘burned up the course’ at Abergavenny during last summer’s hot spell and the fire brigade had to be called to extinguish a grass fire. (‘Funny thing, they didn’t have us back there this year.’)
Or the gas explosion which threw starting times into confusion at St Mellons.
Just shows that golfers will go through fire, water and anything else to play their sport.
Fancy dress cricket. Punch & Judy show, street tug-of-war, bonfire and torch procession — lively events like these made Mitcheldean village’s Silver Jubilee celebrations on June 6 and 7 an event long to be remembered.
Dave Norman of Group Materials Management, who took over the chairmanship of the Jubilee committee at a crucial time, told us he was amazed how much individual ability was brought to light ‘as we went down the track of preparing and fund-raising, and the co-operation received from local organisations and business was first-class.’
V .
Lighting-up time for ye lordly persons of Mitcheldean village — Lord Byard of Westbury (from whom Eric Tose is descended) and, rising to the occasion. Sir David, estates manager of ‘Norman’ extraction. Among the many guests at this Elizabethan feast/fund-raising event was Fred Wickstead and his retinue. Left: How Dave looks when involved in managing fix materials. GONGRA¥ULA¥IONS
Apart from making a donation, there were various ways in which Rank Xerox was pleased to help. The 9200 did its bit by printing the professionallooking programmes; these were prefaced by a brief history of Mitcheldean prepared by Dr Peter Mayes (Quality Engineering Manager).
He wrote that, throughout the centuries, ‘iron smelting, coal mining, ore and stone quarrying, pin and nail manufacture, grandfather clock making and brewing have all flourished and faded.’ Thomas Wintle’s Brewery brewed its fine ales and stout from 1868 until 1923 serving some 70 public houses
Batman Peter Mayes, the sports organiser, comments on the bat work at the fancy dress cricket match, while Michaela, the ‘Keen’ treasurer, tries to manage without benefit of a computer. ^nb Oixon
in the locality. The old Malt House formed the nucleus of the factory that is now the vast Rank Xerox complex.’
Photos of the site in its early days, and a large coloured blow-up of it as it is today, were the Company’s contribution to an exhibition depicting life in Mitcheldean in days gone by. Among the items on show we noticed a copy of the May/June 1961 issue of VISION with a cover picture of Bebe Daniels and Ben Lyon — remember?
The Rank Xerox Variety Club entertained senior citizens at a sing-along and donated £10 for prizes.
Other contributions included the making and engraving by RX apprentice Philip Davis of a nameplate for a flowering tree planted at Townsend House old people’s home to commemorate the Jubilee.
In a neat bit of recycling, some 800 throw-away plastic packs for small parts known as stripper fingers were used as presentation boxes for the
children’s Jubilee crowns. Going further afield, the Company provided a chauffeur-driven car to convey four children to Buckingham Palace where they delivered a loyal address to Her Majesty from the people of Ross-on-Wye. As Dave Norman commented: ‘The celebrations aroused a splendid community spirit which we hope will stay with us for a long time to come.’
Jubilee Awards 1977 is proving a great year for Wilf Morris, JP. Inspection chargehand in Electrical Subs, he has in the last two months been elected chairman of the Forest of Dean District Council after years of local government and community work, awarded a Jubilee medal and invited to attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace.
Tuba-playing Jack Thomas of TED has also earned a Jubilee medal — having given many years’ service as band sergeant for the TAVR branch of the Royal Gloucestershire Hussars.
This aerial picture of Mitcheldean was taken last spring.
Duff Bennett, Factory Waste B Cleaning Supervisor, discusses ttie manpow/er chart with John Wooding of RX Cleaning Services. Right: A cleaning operation in progress on the top floor of Building 29. MAKING
Every working day at 6am, an army of cleaning operators arrives at the Plant to make a clean sweep of our shop floors.
Before the ‘dawn chorus’ is heard in our production areas, they have whisked away the refuse from under the benches and around the machinery, they have emptied the dustbins, and are ready to keep up the good work throughout the day.
It’s not all manual brush and shovel work — the service has become mechanised with the introduction of a pedestrian-operated mechanical scrubber and five mechanical brushes.
Steered at a brisk pace down the main alleyways, the latter sweep up the refuse which is manually brushed into their path, while the scrubber washes the floor clean and even mops up the waste water afterwards.
At one time, cleaning in production areas was carried out by the department concerned. With a view to improving standards, a general housekeeping committee was set up last year and it was decided to hand the work over to Rank Xerox Cleaning Services. Following a try-out with temporary workers, a permanent force of male cleaners (no women applied I) was formed under the supervision of John Wooding. The current force of 33 includes a miscellany of ex-tradesmen — a former baker, fitter, building foreman. ‘We’ve even had people with A-levels in the force,’ says ex-deputy works convenor John. ‘What we’d like to see now is a higher level of litter consciousness. The facilities are there (on the 9200 floor alone there are no less than 79 dustbins) — let’s use them.’
KEEP BRITAIN TIDY This year there is a positive move towards getting people to become litter-conscious. The Keep Britain Tidy Group, of which Rank Xerox are members, held a Jubilee Week litter campaign, and are hoping this will trigger off a continuing effort throughout the country. Well-known personalities like Harry Secombe, Ronnie Corbett, Lulu, David Cassidy, are giving their services voluntarily to help put the message across that litter hurts us in every way — economically, from the standpoint of health and safety, and aesthetically.
It is one environmental problem we can solve, not just where we work but in the locality where we live. We will all benefit from keeping our bit of Britain tidy.
COUNT DOm TO THE COUNT By now you will know that ‘The Count’ who has been making his appearance on posters across the site was not, as someone thought, a new group engaged for a threenight stand in the Ballroom on July 20, 21 and 22.
‘He’ was created to publicise a mammoth counting operation of all Mitcheldean, Lydney and Cinderford production material in assembly, manufacturing and stores areas. It was estimated that some 70,000 plus part numbers were to be counted in the assembly and manufacturing areas alone.
The main objective of this physical inventory is to update all our ongoing stock files/systems and, specifically, to reconstitute the stores issue list file.
David Stokes, Manager in charge of the PI Project, told us that inaccurate
stock records are believed to be primarily responsible for part shortages and are a contributing factor to the continuing production shortfalls against programme. There is also a need to reconcile actual inventory balances with book balances, and to satisfy certain external audit requirements. A mini-count took place m selected areas at the end of April to test out the various procedures that have been developed for the physical inventory; excellent results were achieved and the co-operation received from all areas was ‘inspiring’. As we went to press, areas were being specially cleaned and tidied up, items clearly identified, etc., ready for the army of trained ‘counters’, identifiable by their badges, to begin their task. The count-down to The Count had begun.
Fetter Hill Quarry, some six miles away in the Forest, used for the disposal of our treated waste over a number of years, is no more.
The filling in of this gaping hole, 100ft long, 35ft wide and 30ft deep, was recently carried out under the direction of Robert Johnson of Works Engineering and John Watkins of Works Laboratory.
Should they explore this area in centuries to come, geologists may be puzzled by the unique strata — polythene sheeting reinforced with chicken mesh and chain link fencing over the tipped sludge, then layers of large and small limestones, foundation, binding and organic material, the lot being topped off with coalbrash (coal-impregnated dirt) up to the surrounding land levels.
Where does our treated waste go now? To a disposal plant in Birmingham.
RHIDIAN GODDARD Statistically Speaking
What does 38.24.36 mean to you ? Most of the ladies would avoid answering the question, whilst most of the men would immediately fix on a heavenly body of ideal dimensions. If you clarified the question by saying that these measurements applied to a young damsel of your acquaintance, the ladies would argue about the figures and the men would happily accept them. The point I am making is this: statistics don’t always describe exactly what you are talking about, and they aren’t always accepted as true. Of all the communication tools that we use to transmit information, the magical statistic is probably the most abused — perhaps because, collectively, statistics can be manipulated to prove anything, or almost anything.
Let’s take a few simple examples. The Labour Party produces a graph that shows the cost of living is rising slowly, whilst the Conservative Party produces a graph to show that it is rising quickly.
Obviously the basic figures came from the same source so what’s the difference ? The Labour Party uses a short scale length for prices and a long scale for time; the Conservative Party presents it the other way around and bingo I confusion.
Percentages are a beautiful way of clouding the truth. Did you know that a sale article reduced by a fantastic 12i per cent was only one eighth cheaper (‘Sorry, sir, we have to charge for delivery’).
Furthermore, that hire purchase agreement with the low, low interest rate of 1 5 per cent (on the purchase price) over two years is really going to cost you, brother.
Consider the case of the lowly fraction. To a social drinker, half way through a pint, the glass is still half full. To the alcoholic looking forward to the next pint, the glass is already half empty. The quantity in each case is the same — only the emotional impact is different.
The adept statistician has at his command a variety of weapons which, used in the right combination, can convince the unwary that two plus two does indeed equal five.
A trend can appear from nowhere simply by plotting a normal everyday occurrence as a logarithmic scale. The apparent acceleration of events can then be used to convince the uninitiated that things are getting better (they could even be getting worse).
By reducing events to a binary code and then using that code in a mathematical equation, the complete gamut of industrial practices can be manipulated to show that the company is growing, shrinking, making a profit, showing a loss, increasing production or falling short of its targets.
The receiver of this information is usually so confused by the mathematical convulsions involved in reaching the end result that he happily accepts the findings, rather than be accused of being incapable of deciphering them.
The sad truth is that statistics in one way or another affect us all. Weekly statistics of XCN clearances, build quantities and marketing placements are the performance figures against which we are measured. They are quantifiable entities that can be compared with corporate targets.
Maybe the statistical analysts should introduce a frustration factor or perversity percentage that can be incorporated into the performance factor to take care of the occasional shortfall.
Performance projections are based on hypothetical figures gleaned from profit and risk equations. In themselves they are only mathematical representations of a statistical hypothesis.
Whether or not they prove to be accurate or meaningful is not the point; they are part of the corporate manifesto, as necessary as the company logo and as important as the annual report.
It’s Here to Stay They are the very basis of next year’s progress and the verdict on last year’s misdemeanours. Like it or not, the statistic is here to stay.
Let’s face it — without the graph, Gantt chart, equation, formulae and projected trend, how can we otherwise convince the non-technical that we are right ?
A few people are capable of correcting one’s grammar, but even fewer are capable of penetrating a carefully designed screen of strategically placed figures complete with function signs and parentheses.
The most wonderful thing of all, though, is that if things do go wrong, you can always blame the decimal point for being in the wrong place.
Apprentices A new commercial training scheme commences this next September with the intake of eight young people embarking on a four or five-year ‘business apprenticeship’.
This scheme has been designed to start preparing young people for a professional or semi-professional career in any one of the commercial/ administrative functions of the Company — and at the same time to help satisfy our longer term need for suitably qualified recruits to these areas.
Applications were invited from school leavers as well as those already in employment on site who were under 19 years of age and had achieved a certain education level.
Each one of the 60 or so applicants was interviewed before the successful eight were selected. After completing a two-week off-the-job induction course, they will do a two-year course; during that time they will be assigned to various departments on a threemonthly rotation, gaining experience of the work situation, with day release to enable them to pursue studies leading to Ordinary National Certificate Business Studies. Subsequently they can go on to take the Higher National Certificate or Diploma, following this up by professional studies or specialised training.
Selected members of the senior staff of commercial departments are being invited to act as ‘mentors’ to the trainees for counselling and career guidance during their apprenticeship. Says Roger Acland, Commercial & Administrative Training Co-ordinator:
‘We are glad to be able to offer opportunities for school-leavers to enter commercial and administrative areas with fully subsidised training.’
Merit Award for David The Community Service Committee of the Royal Forest of Dean Rotary Club have selected apprentice David Beach for a Youth Merit Award. In our November/December ’76 issue we reported on some of the good work that David has been doing for the community, and Bill Luker reports he’s been making first-class progress at Mitcheldean too.
The award was made on July 5 and we hope to publish a photo of the presentation later.
CONTINUITY PEOPLE This year four Long Service Association members reached ‘silver jubilee’ time in their service — Vic Buhlmann (Component Production), Jeff James (RX Cinderford), Jeff Kew (Engineering) and Tommy Knight (Receiving Inspection). Director of Manufacturing Operations Ron Morfee presented the 25-year awards at the annual dinner on May 6 at the Chase Hotel, Ross-on-Wye. Proposing the toast of the association, Mr Morfee said that it was the longserving employees who were responsible for maintaining continuity in the Company; their fund of experience represented a valuable asset. LSA president Bernard Smith proposed the toast to the guests and Lionel Lyes, Director of Personnel, Manufacturing Group, replied on their behalf. They included Vi Holder, Group LSA and 25-Year Club secretary, and representatives from Rank Xerox, Welwyn Garden City; Rank Audio Visual, Brentford; Rank Taylor Hobson, Leicester; Rank Optics, Leeds; and Rank Radio International, Chiswick and Plymouth. Lucky Man . . . Terry Brown of Small Batch who won the £20 prize. We Missed You . . . LSA secretary Valerie Cleal, who underwent an ‘engineering job’ on some troublesome spinal discs and will not be back for some months — she has our best wishes.
Above: Obviously the turkey went down well at this table. Right: Tommy Knight receives his 25-year award from Ron Morfee. Below, from left: The other 25-year men — Vic Buhlmann, Jeff Kew, and Jeff James who received his award at a later date.
Welcome Back … to Des Jones who has been off sick for several months. He wishes to express his appreciation to colleagues and friends who rallied round providing transport for himself and his wife Eugenie, and demonstrating their skills in his garden I The 400 Mark There were just over 300 at this year’s event; next year, the 25th anniversary
dinner, there will doubtless be many more. Between January and May this year, chairman Henry Phillips told us, some 70 people have been enrolled, and by the end of the year total membership will be around the 400 mark. As from January 1978, the qualifying period for membership will be upped from 15 to 20 years.
MEMORY MAN Laurence Miller, better known as Max, is a retiring type. But that doesn’t mean he hasn’t been getting around quite a bit since he retired last year after a record 47 years with the Company. In a letter to Henry Phillips, Max says he’s been to Essex twice on his Honda to visit relatives. ‘Petrol consumption was only one gallon of four star for 162 miles ! Not bad, even for a 70cc,’ he comments. Max is by way of being an archivist and recently wrote a full-page article on his old home town of Wanstead, Herts., with photographs he took in 1920; it was published in the local Guardian Gazette with an invitation to write more. He also has three reels of 9-5mm cine film (pre-1938) beirig reviewed by Kathleen Darby of BBC TV and is hoping some may be used in a series towards the end of the year. Max started work with the Gaumont Company in 1928 and had many details and photographs of their old equipment, including an advertisement issued in 1912, when Leon Gaumont was already showing synchronised sound and colour films. Having discovered that Gaumont Internationale (the original French Gaumont company) was still going strong, he sent some of these memorabilia to them and received a very friendly letter back enclosing a brochure marking their 80th anniversary. An amateur radio operator. Max says he’s brushing up his French and has been able to use his (basic) German when speaking to Continental amateur stations from his ‘bed-sitter cum workshop cum radio shack.’ His call-sign is G3YGI.
SERVICE AWARDS The following have been awarded Rank Xerox emblems for 20 or more years service: 30 Years Stan Wheeler, Engineering (June). 20 Years Roger Bailey, PED (June); Mike Bullock, Lydney Assembly (June); Yvonne Jones, 9200 Assembly (June); Frank Knight, Machine Shop (June); George Meek, Quality Assurance (July); Martin Parsloe, Machine Shop, Cinderford (July); Ted Pelham, TED (July).
If you have, then please — let your departmental correspondent know, or leave it at any Gate House for collection by me, or post it to me at Tree Tops, Plump Hill, Mitcheldean, or ring me —ext. 566 or Drybrook 542415. Myrtle Fowler, Editor
Ex-apprentice Julian Shufflebotham, who represents the Company on the Energy l\Aanagers Group covering Gloucestershire and North Wiltshire, is A/litcheldean’s Mr Energy. Here in No. 3 boilerhouse he showed us how the massive 8-3 million btu boilers, which keep us supplied with hot water, have been converted to natural gas. Two are ready for firing up, a third is on standby. Looking through the burner peephole is boilerman Bill Counsel!
Above left: In the electrical workshop Glyn Barnett wires up a local heating plant control panel destined for Building 40, with the assistance of apprentice Garry Dade. Above right: Prior to the natural gas conversion, the boilers had to have a ‘de-coke’ — hence the sinister-looking protective gear.
A WA THEBi At holidaytime, when most people’s thoughts are concentrated on ‘switching off, our Works Engineering Department are busy with preparations for getting ‘switched on’ — energywise. Quite apart from predictions of world shortages in years to come, there is, as everyone who pays a fuel bill must be aware, an immediate reason for being concerned about energy consumption — its soaring cost. With this trend showing every indication of continuing, it was decided that major capital investment on an energy cost reduction programme at Mitcheldean would be justified by the pay-back. Julian Shufflebotham was appointed Energy Engineer, his brief being to survey energy use and introduce systems which would reduce costs and make for more efficient use of energy. From a detailed study of the way in which energy was being used, it became apparent that we could save up to 20 per cent in the realm of heating and lighting just by improving control, without affecting the productivity of the Plant, prejudicing safety or lowering standards of comfort. To achieve this, a mini-computer for signalling and control has been installed in No. 3 boilerhouse. Acting as a watch-dog, it is ‘trained’ to recognise when our electricity consumption approaches a level at which a premium is payable, and to switch off selectively when that occurs. By tailoring our energy consumption to our exact requirements, with the aid of the computer, we can help keep our energy consumption from being ‘at a premium’. Says Premises Manager Tony Newman: ‘You do not need high office temperatures when the doors
Energy People have rCH’DOG IN VLERHOUSE are locked and everyone has gone home. You may need more heat in January, less on that unexpectedly warm spring day in February, then extra warmth when it starts snowing at Easter. Recognising these needs will be the job of the computer.’
Jaw-power — a possible source of energy?
For example, the warm-up period, before people come in to work, can be particularly wasteful of fuel when an unthinking time-switch is used; our computerised system will apply some intelligence to the situation. Sensors located on the outside (north) and inside walls of buildings will record and compare temperatures; via data gathering panels (DGPs), the information will be relayed to the computer and instructions sent back as to when to turn on the heat. Before the computer’s instructions can activate the relevant switches, they have to pass through local plant control panels, and many of these are being assembled in our own electrical workshop.
Far left: Responsible for the fire alarm monitoring system is project engineer Steve Timms (left), seen with Ron Bone of Honeywell during the commissioning period. Above the junction box which they are studying in Building 41 are a data gathering panel and an intercom, unit for emergency use. Left: In Security HQ at Barton Hill gatehouse, Eric Davies watches as Charlie Meek presses a button to call up a floor plan image on the terminal screen.
In addition to controlling about 90 per cent of the heating equipment, the new system will control ventilation and lighting on a time basis, turning these off when buildings are unoccupied and switching off selectively during lunch hours.
It will also provide closer control of our boiler plant. Our biggest boilers have now been converted to natural gas on an ‘interruptable supply’ contract which is financially advantageous.
Should the supply be interrupted for any reason, these boilers, being dual-fired, can be switched to oil in the space of half an hour.
Keeping records and giving warning of faults are other ‘tricks’ our watch-dog can do. If there should be an electrical fault, for instance, an alarm is sent to the terminal located in No. 3 boilerhouse and a warning buzzer is sounded. At the press of a button, the screen will show up where the fault is and indicate whether it is due to mains failure or tampering, etc., so that the problem can be dealt with effectively.
While keeping one eye on our energy programme, our ever-vigilant watch-dog will keep the other on our fire alarm system. The DGPs are fitted adjacent to fire alarm and sprinkler installations; they constantly scan these, and are scanned in turn by the processor.
If there is an alert, a further terminal located in Security HQ at Barton Hill Gatehouse will flash lights and bleep for attention.
By pressing a button, an officer on duty can call up on the screen a diagram of the building floor affected, the exact zone where the fire has broken out being easily identified. The fire services, alerted by the usual warnings, can then be directed to the trouble spot with greater accuracy and minimum delay. While this fire alarm monitoring system will shortly be in operation, the energy management programme, being a much bigger undertaking, will extend over four years.
It will commence in the autumn with Buildings 41, 40 and 36 and gradually spread over the whole site. Departments will be advised when they have been linked up to the system. In the meantime, the ‘war on waste’ must go on.
NEW SAFETY STRUCTURE A new Safety organisation structure has now been agreed. The main committee consists of the chairman (Don Elliott), secretary (John Spratley), Safety Manager (Jack Timms) plus one member from each of 14 group sub-committees representing particular areas. Each sub-committee consists of a chairman and safety representatives of management, supervisory, technical, clerical and industrial workers, making 100 in all; the areas and the respective chairmen are as follows: Group 1. RX Lydney — Ralph Zimmermann; 2. RX Cinderford — Ted Adams: 3 B.23 and part of 3,6 (Training) —John Eastwood; 4. B.11 and 24 — Gra/7am Linley; 5. B.29 — Phil Cleal; 6. B.32, 41 (Production Stores, Spares Packing), Hereford, Northern and all auxiliary stores — Brian Barnes; 7. B.36 (IVIanufacturing area only)—Swan Vaughan; 8. B.40/1 —Brian Mould; 9. B.40/2 inc. offices — Kevin Horrobin; 10. B.41, 42 (Supply Centre) — Sfei’e Ferriman; 11. B.44, 50, 51 (Group, PED, PCD, IE) — Tony Nightingale; 12. 8.50, 51 (MIS) —John Flynn; ^2. B.3 38, 50, 51 (Engineering) — Stan Wheeler; 14. B.I, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 18, 34, 49 (all boiler/gate houses. Eastern Stores) — Tony Newman.
To ensure everyone is kept posted about safety matters, each area is to have its own special noticeboard exhibiting such information as membership of committees, minutes of safety group meetings, and a copy of the Company policy on safety. The Health & Safety at Work Act fully comes into force in October 1978 and one of the first jobs to be tackled concerns the training of employees in the implications of the Act.
John Spratley has relinquished responsibilities for travel to enable greater involvement in the Safety programme, and the increasing insurance involvement in connection with the Company Risk Management programme. As Insurance & Safety Officer, he reports to Jack Timms, Safety & Security Manager.
Derek Wintle, recently appointed Administrative Services Manager, continues his responsibilities for Mitcheldean-based assignees and assumes responsibilities for travel, catering, employee transport, insurance administration and general administration. Safe Subject Health and safety at work has been featuring at the Salesian School, Blaisdon, recently. First aider Tony Cale who takes classes at Blaisdon tells us that, instead of doing senior first aid for their Duke of Edinburgh award, the boys opted for a health and safety at work course, and Jack Timms has been giving them talks, films, etc., on the subject.
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The Dutch connection is remote,’ says Ian Van Ryne. But it’s very likely that he’s a descendant of Rembrandt Van Rijn, the master painter. Ian came to us not from the Netherlands but from Surrey, in 1970; he joined PED, then transferred to O & M, and has just been made section manager in Materials & Shop Control at Lydney Refurbishing Centre. Although no painter, he’s currently preparing a masterpiece in colour. Entitled ‘Fabrication’, it will be a presentation in Mitcheldean church depicting the history of the village since Domesday times in sound and light. In particular Ian, doing something clever with slider/dimmers, will create a ‘colour mosaic’ of the marble reredos with its life-size figures, and highlight other features of this historic church — the aim being to arouse interest in and raise funds for its preservation. There will be two narrators; the Collegium Musicum, and the Gloucester Salvation Army Band with Les McNealey (MIS), will perform while John Ralph (also MIS) will contribute mediaeval instrument effects. The church bells, under the captaincy of Alan Paton (PED), will ‘ring up the curtain’ on the presentation on September 24. lan’s most recent experience in stage-managing has included two Gloucester Operatic & Dramatic shows, the Ross & Archenfield Pageant, and Mitcheldean School’s Jubilee Concert. ‘But I never appear on stage unless heavily disguised,’ he says, being essentially a behind-thescenes man. Incidentally, his wife Rosemary is editor of Mitcheldean’s parish magazine, with Ian in charge of copying and distribution.
As assistant secretary of the Mitcheldean LSA, Mary Meek has been having a pretty busy time recently. With secretary Val Cleal out of action for some months, Mary has had considerable letter-writing and other duties to carry out in connection with arrangements for the annual dinner and the retired members’ outing to Burnham-on-Sea. ‘But I enjoy it,’ she says.
She and her husband Ken have two married sons. Elder son David is an electrical adjuster in 4000/4500 Assembly while ex-apprentice Royston is a production engineer — so the family account for three of the 60 entries under the name ‘Meek’ in Personnel Records. Which reminds us of that popular Mitcheldean joke about the meek inheriting the earth !
Members of the former RX Dancing Club, Mary and Ken have accumulated a dazzling array of awards, having danced their way through bronze, silver and gold medals and via bars and stars to a cup for ballroom dancing. They have just a few more stars to collect before they win a cup for Latin American style as well, and they regularly attend classes in Gloucester to perfect their art. Mary’s other hobby is dress-making. ‘But as we don’t go in for competition work, I don’t have to get involved in sewing through clouds of tulle I’
Russell Griffiths of Engineering has a dual vocation. On site he is known to us as section leader of Component Engineering (formerly Standards Section); but to the people of Fownhope he is familiar as the Rev. Russell Griffiths, involved in the work and worship at their church and its daughter churches.
A member of the Rank Xerox Christian Fellowship, Russell joined the growing ranks of the auxiliary pastoral (non-stipendiary) ministry when on June 26 in Hereford Cathedral he was ordained a deacon to serve in the Parish of Fownhope for a year, after which he hopes to be ordained as a priest.
Having been recommended for training at a selection conference, Russell began his studies three years ago, spending two evenings per week at Church House, Gloucester, with residential weekends and long summer residential courses at Cropthorne, near Evesham, in order to achieve the same academic standards as those required of the professional cleric trained at college.
The building up within dioceses of an ordained ministry in which both kinds of priest — full-time paid and part-time non-stipendiary — will work together is being encouraged by church leaders. To such a partnership, committed lay people can bring the benefits of experience in industry and other spheres of work. Says Russell: ‘I think the traditional form of full-time ministry in the Church of England will gradually change over the next 20 years — we are now seeing the beginnings of a trend away from the established concepts.’
A Heartwarming Event The Reunion Luncheons held every spring for our pensioners are heartwarming affairs, and the 120 who came along to this year’s event on May 14 really enjoyed themselves.
After an excellent three-course luncheon. Director of Manufacturing Operations Ron Morfee gave the visitors a brief sketch of our activities over the past year.
‘The 9200 is becoming a great success with customers,’ he said. ‘We have a steady level of production and we shall be taking on more people to help us to increase output. Quality and reliability of our machines, which are now very good indeed, are vital in the fight against competition.’
Ray Davies thanked the Company on behalf of the guests; they included Pensions Manager Alan Chapman and his team who helped to settle pensioners’ problems on the spot.
After lunch there was music for dancing, and singing, in the ballroom. Jack Benbow added a topical touch by playing the waltz from the Jubilee Suite he has composed for silver band. ‘It’s had a first performance by Gloucester Salvation Army Band,’ he told us.
Enjoying the get-together in the Social Centre.
Date in Tunisia Some of our pensioners made sure that they got a good start to the summer of 1977. In March a party of 18 left for a month’s holiday in Tunisia.
Writes Bill Jones, who helped organise the trip: ‘It was a firstclass holiday and everyone enjoyed themselves. We visited Tunis, the capital, the Roman ruins at Carthage
and the town of Sidi-bou-Said and saw some very wonderful scenery. ‘Transport to and from the airport was supplied by the Company and we are very grateful to them for this.’ A spring holiday in Spain is now being planned for 1978 and anyone interested is asked to get in touch with Bill (Ross 3078) or Taffy Morgan, 57 Parks Road, Mitcheldean.
EMIGRATING XEROX-WISE George Sologub came to this country from Poland during the war. An ex-RAF pilot officer, he works in Quality Assurance and has been with us 20 years. He and his wife Joan (Production Planning & Control) have three sons, all of whom were employed at Mitcheldean at one time. Jan, the eldest, is still with us — working in Small Batch. But last year Erik left PED to emigrate to South Africa, and now Paul, who was in PCD, has gone ‘down under’. He and his wife, Rosemary, daughter of Harcourt Davies in Finance, emigrated to Sydney, Australia, last May. Paul returned to the motor trade in which he served his apprenticeship, while Rosemary has become secretary to the Sydney District Manager in Rank Xerox Australia. She celebrated her 21st birthday out there and has been made to feel very welcome. First hand news of her was brought over by Dick Kaye when he paid a recent visit to Mitcheldean. Two other emigrants — Jim Mackin and John Cresswell, both of Quality Engineering — have found employment with Xerox Canada at Missisauga, Ontario, where Jim is a QC engineer and John an assembler/tester.
Neil Plays for NY State Not an emigrant, but an assignee now in his second year with Xerox Corporation, Webster, production engineer Neil Jones has been taking his liaison duties very seriously. One-time captain of Cinderford RFC, for whom he has played for some 14 years, Neil joined Rochester Ardvaks, the local American side, in March this year and made the 1st XV. He played when Rochester won the Upstate Spring Knockout Tournament in which 28 teams took part.
His performances for Rochester resulted in his selection for the Full New York State XV and he played for them against the Niagara RF Union at Buffalo (unfortunately the game was lost 20 points to 10).
Neil, who is the son of supervisor Ralph Jones of Central Records, reports that ‘the game is not as hard as Forest Rugby but the Americans are improving all the time 1′
Far left: George and Joan Sologub with Jan, the eldest of their three sons. They also have a married daughter. Left: Neil Jones, battle-stained after a game of Rugby American-style.
Above: The new football champs. The Ardrionians, smile for the camera, despite a cutting North wind. Above right: Before the game, the team of hopeful PED Crusaders with referee Dave l\/larkey and linesmen Keith Ward and Tony Prothero. Right: Don Elliott presents captain John Parsons with the winners’ trophy. Far right: Dave takes the opportunity to drive home a point to some of those who recently passed the referees’ exam after a lunchtime course under his instruction.
Football Final The final of the Interdepartmental Football Competition, in which 17 teams took part, provided a close and exciting match on May 16 at Harrow Hill.
The first goal was scored by Lloyd Gill of PED Crusaders after about 15 minutes. It looked as if this would be the score at half-time but Terry Hook netted for the Ardrionians with about five minutes to go.
In the second half, it was Terry who put ‘Ardri’ ahead after his brother ‘Hammer’ Hook headed the ball on from a corner. Straight away. Crusaders equalised with a goal by Tony Tovey. Just when it seemed certain that extra time would have to be played, Terry scored his third goal — with two minutes to go.
Works Manager Don Elliott kindly presented the prizes and medals to players and officials. Thanks are also due to the local clubs, and Harrow Hill FC in particular, for allowing us the use of their facilities. Dave Markey
The Teams
Ardrionians: Clive Barnett, Mike Clark, Richard Cooke, Dave Elsmore, ‘Hammer’ Hook, Terry Hook, John Parsons (capt.), Dave Roberts, Gary Sleeman, Dave Tyler Dave Walding. Subs: Paul McBride, Brian Joyce.
PED Crusaders: Phil Bowdler, Gordon Davis, Steve Davis, Lloyd Gill, Peter Hughes, John Jeffs, Keith Marfell, John Sparks, Tony Tovey (capt.), Roger Trigg, Peter Walby. Subs: Kenny Johnson, Derek Trigg.
All Pull Together Twice a week, on Tuesdays and Sundays, a group of men meet by an ash tree near Newnham-on-Severn to hoist a deadweight up a tree.
It’s not a hanging though. The deadweight is only a drum containing about half a ton of concrete; and by pulling on the rope, via a pulley fixed to a branch.
the men get the effect of an opposing tug of war team.
Led by Dave Whitfield of Group Quality Assurance, these men are members of the latest section to become affiliated to the club. Dave’s brother Bill (PED) is in the team too, and Ted Davis of Reliability is their coach.
Tug of war is one sport of which the British are currently champions; it is played under AAA rules and may be included in the next International Qlympics, says Dave. ‘It’s good exercise — and good entertainment — and it has the advantage of being an all-year-round sport. You can practise indoors on rubber matting.’
Having enjoyed taking part in a tug of war at a Ruardean fete two years ago, he got a team together and they have already won trophies, not to mention 10 gallons of cider and five gallons of beer.
If you are tempted to become a member, and Dave hopes you will be, contact him on ext. 1886. He also plans to start a women’s side.
New Photo Image The RX Amateur Photographic Club is projecting a new, and lively, image and the preview of their proposed programme for 1977/78 sounds promising.
They’re kicking off with an outing on August 21 to Lacock Abbey (Wiltshire) and the Fox Talbot Museum — the Abbey was the home of William Henry Fox Talbot, pioneer of photography, and the museum is in a barn at the entrance gates.
September sees a demo of equipment and improvisation on the
7th and a portrait session on the 21st. A cine night is fixed for October 5, while on the 19th there is ‘preparation of club calendar and competition’. The Ross v. RX Club battle is on November 2 with a press evening on the 16th. This year’s events finish with ‘preparation of exhibition of club work and competition’ — 1978 details we’ll comment on later.
To quote the June newsletter, ‘for reasons only known to a select few million Chinese, the subjects for the competitions are nearly the same for both slides and black & white’.
‘Kids’ (the children sort) and ‘Four best’ feature in both types of competition ; the other two slide classes are ‘Against the light’ and ‘The seasons’ while in b & w there are ‘In the rain’ and ‘Photojournalism’ (this latter sounds interesting I)
Bra & Panties are Tops The day before the Interdepartmental Finals, Harrow Hill was the scene of a Supply Centre Round Robin Football Tournament in which three teams under the names of IDC Athletico, RX Management and Bra & Panties participated.
The Bra & Panties eleven won 4 points to IDC’s 2 and MGT’s 0; whether this was due to better play, gallantry on the part of the male players, or just the fact that they couldn’t keep their eyes on the ball we’ll never know. (Who was that character who went ‘bird’ watching ?).
Anyway, it was all in a good cause — the Cheltenham Cobalt Unit —for which a net total of £50 was raised.
— winners three times over of the ladies skittles tournament— who were delighted with their Right: Their worthy opponents, defeated but not downhearted — the Seven it Fours, captained by Jean Downing. Photos: j. Ingram Left: Time to smile for the Brandy Snaps individual prizes of travelling clocks.
They’ve done it again ! Twice winners and once runners-up in the past three ladies’ skittles tournaments, the girls of 660 Assembly (now back at Mitcheldean from Lydney) won the contest for the third time on June 18.
Playing under the style of the Brandy Snaps and captained by Myrtle Savile, they beat the Seven & Fours (representing 7000 and 4000 departments) by 17 pins (272:255).
Highest scorer in the tournament — which attracted 14 teams — was Myrtle Rosser with 47.
Apart from being rated ‘the best ladies’ final ever’, it was the last to be played in the existing club house. Said club chairman Tony Haynes who presented the awards: ‘Next year we will be in the new club premises for the final and I hope there will be as many if not more teams taking part.’
As well as the silver cups, there were travelling clocks for the individual players in the winning team and rose-bowls for the runners-up. Pots of chrysanthemums were presented to ‘Mrs Tony’ and Nancy Beard, and warm thanks tendered to organiser Cyril Beard, and the stickers-up for their part in a very successful event.
Stop press — The final of the men’s skittles tournament held on July 9, was won by Tool Room playing against Freddie & the Dreamers of RX Cinderford. Pictures next issue.
Scores of golfers On May 16, 15 teams comprising three golfers each were joined by five guests for the second RX Golf Society outing to Hereford GC. The prize on this occasion was the Interdepartmental Cup, decided over two medal rounds, with the best two from three cards counting in morning and afternoon.
Some fine golf was played in rather cool, windy conditions in the morning with several players returning scores better than par for the course. With the sun breaking through in the afternoon, many golfers were spurred on to better things.
The cup winners, as you will see from our cover picture, were the PED Electronics team —Tony Knight
(67,75), John Miles (74,67) and Danny Haines (70,77) —who won by five strokes with 279 aggregate.
The runners-up had to be decided by a tie break when Group Mfg and Design Jaygees tied with 284. Group Mfg with Johnny Cash (73,73), Eric Moore (75,72) and Rich Matthews (73,66) just edged out Design Jaygees with Harold Gardiner (71,68), John Jones (73,77) and Graham Gardner (74,72).
Individual prizes were taken by Tony Knight (67), John Spratley (68), John Sawyer (70) and Maurice Pask (70) in the morning, and Rich Matthews (66), John Miles (67), Harold Gardiner (68) and Nigel Bayliss (68) in the afternoon. In weather more reminiscent of Spain than South Wales, 30 golfers made the trip to Newport to play at Rogerstone GS on June 2. This par 72 course proved to be a much greater test of golfing skills, with the ‘rough’ taking a heavy toll. The morning medal round was won by Dave Robinson with a superb 69, followed by Ian Campbell, 73, and Danny Haines, 77. The stableford in the afternoon was shared by Dave Robinson and Dave Roberts with 33 pts.
Runners up were Johnny Cash, Bob Howells, John Jones and Hugh Colby with 32 pts. Dave Robinson cleared the board by taking the £5 voucher on the day.
At the halfway stage, the Order of Merit is headed by Dave Robinson, 39 merit points, closely followed by Rich Matthews 35, Johnny Cash 33, and John Miles and John Spratley with 28 apiece.
At the time of going to press, the outing to Knowie was next on the list, with Burford and Cirencester to follow. Alistair Caldwell
Paint for the Clubhouse The art competition is to happen around mid-November, John Johnson tells us. Among the entries, the committee hope to find paintings suitable to purchase for the new club premises so bear this in mind, all you artists, when choosing the theme for your oil or water-colour masterpiece.
Sharing the Honours Last year’s double champion in the billiards and snooker tournament. Bob Howells of Reliability had to defend both titles this year against finalist Bill Dobbs of Production Planning & Control.
On May 19 Bill became the new snooker champion, but Bob retained his billiards title after a very close match on June 22.
The two tournaments attracted 85 entries. Says organiser Barry Barton : ‘The standard of play has improved considerably since last year.’
Bill Dobbs breaks off in the final of the snooker tournament in which his opponent was Bob Howells (far left).
Silver Wedding Congratulations to Des Haines (joint supervisor, N/C Machine Shop) and his wife Edie who celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary on July 26.
Births Emma-Jane, a daughter for Trevor Bullock (9200 Assembly) and his wife Barbara, on April 1. Kate Louise, a daughter for Kevin Horrobin (Manager 4000 Family Assembly) and his wife Margaret, formerly secretary to Ted Sage (Manager 9200 Family Assembly), on April 2. Sarah Louise, a daughter for Brian Whittington (RX Cinderford) and his wife Jenny, on June 14.
Retirements Our best wishes to the following who retire this July — Jack Minton (Reliability) who started with us in May 1971 ; George Cullis (Tool Inspection), who has been with us since September 1969.
CAR POOL Would anyone travelling from Hereford and wishing to offer lift to paying passenger only, please ring Marie Hall on ext. 572.
HOME MARKET When sending in items please give your extension number and/or department to ensure inclusion
For Sale
Portable 8-track stereo, as new, £30 o.n.o. Jackson tumble-drier, £35 o.n.o. Oil-filled radiator with th’stat, £15 o.n.o. Ext. 651 or Drybrook 543259 evgs.
Tuning parts for Rootes Series III, IV & Super Minx range; stage I cast iron cylinder head, skimmed and chambers balanced (also suitable for Arrow range) £15; water-heated alloy inlet manifold to take Weber 28/36, £10; large bore cast iron exhaust manifold and down pipe, £5. K. D. Williams, ext. 855 or Lydney 2316.
Honda C50 motorcycle, 12mths test, excellent condition, £65. R. F. Wright, ext. 996.
AM/FM receiver (tuner-l-amplifier) 2 x 16W, National Panasonic SA 5110 still under guarantee, £75. A. Kitcheman, ext. 1395.
Double divan bed 4ft 6in. x 6ft 6in. complete with headboard, £18. Hand sewing machine (Singer) with case, £12. M. Walker, ext. 646.
Philips 19in. b & w TV, 4 yrs old, good working order, £25. Mrs B. Ingmire, ext. 584.
Barbie doll, good condition, plus accessories inc. several wigs and clothes, £2 o.n.o. M. Fowler, ext. 566 or Drybrook 54241 5 evgs.
Cinderford area — superior bungalow complete with large attractive garden, etc., and self-contained utility room or flat. 22379 or ext. 436/294.
Mothercare cot, reversible mattress, cot bumpers and bedclothes, excellent condition, £20; also high chair, converts to swing and safe sitter, £6. Mrs J. Knapper, ext. 355 or Drybrook 542916.
Susan Hughes (Stock Control) and Ian Bamford married at Christchurch Church on June 18.
Splendid Effort Medical Department’s jumble sale and draw last March raised a handsome £442 for the Cheltenham Cobalt Unit.
Obituary We regret to report the death of Charles Freeman on May 29 at the age of 57; he worked in the Machine Shop and had been with us for nine years. We extend our sympathy to his family.
Bunk beds, spring interior mattresses £40. Aladdin paraffin heater, £10. Electrolux 302 (cylinder) cleaner with tools, £20. Studio couch, makes up into single bed — good home wanted. 103 Gloucester Rd, Coleford, or Coleford 2347.
Oualcast Concorde electric lawnmower, very good working order, £14. N. Taylor ext. 1258.
Mothercare carrycot, brown, good as new, £7-50. Hotpoint Supermatic twin-tub washing m/e, 3 yrs old, good condition, £45. Pete Barton, ext 996 or Coleford 2708.
Mitcheldean — 3 bedroomed detached house, fully fitted kitchen, fitted carpets, garage, established garden, £11,500, offers. Radiomobile 8-track car player— negative earth £30 o.n.o.; also selection of 8 track tapes, half price, list available. Ext. 1801.
Hoover washing machine, single tub, only used twice, £70. Valerie Bullock, ext. 331 or Drybrook 542211 after 8pm.
Sling — detached brick-built house, conservatory lounge, kitchen/diner, two large bedrooms, approx. \e mature gardens, fruit trees, £11,250 o.n.o. R. R. Gibbard, ext. 903.
Photos: J. Ingram Geraldine Nicholson (Finance) and Garry Ellis (Tool Room) whose wedding took place at Lydbrook Church on June 11.
Dave Bale Appeal The committee of the Dave Bale Appeal Fund would like to thank everyone who contributed ; the amount collected was £106.
Andrew Dowding Memorial Award Our deepest apologies to the family of the late Andrew Dowding for our double error in reference to the Memorial Award created in his name.
Raleigh Chopper bike, £35. No offers. Drybrook 542059 afternoons. Qualcast Panther electric lawnmower, 14in. blades, plus accessories, as new, £30. Ext. 1894.
Wanted Building materials of all descriptions. Ext. 651 or Drybrook 543259 evgs. Child’s garden swing. Nora Powell, ext. 1103. Blackboard and easel. Gary Knight, Apprentice School, or Drybrook 542784. For motor caravan conversion — camping cooker (2 burners and grill) plus any other caravan furniture upholstery, fittings, etc. D. Stephens, RXC 19-10. Single bed. Graham Perkins, ext. 1334. Washboard for Bream senior citizens’ group. Will collect. Eva Thomas, Whitecroft 562880. Lady’s cycle. Ext. 275. Small reliable car, any model. Ext. 472.
To Let
Fownhope area — unfurnished detached chalet bungalow, 3/4 bedrooms, rent exclusive £18 pw. Don McCall, ext. 912 or Ross-on-Wye 4693.
12 Printed in England by Taylor, Young (Printers) Ltd.