Return to 1980-1984

Vision 148

Quality circle find
solutions to a
reject rate problem
Members of the fuser roll quality circle discuss problems of damage to rolls in handling and
toting; from the left are: Brian Vaughan, Tony Wood (leader), Gareth Clowes, Alan Miles,
Arthur Ward, David Bale, Harold Ennis, Bill Jones and Mike Brain. (Missing f r om the picture is
Stuart Holloway.)
The fuser roll area in the machine shop has long had a puzzling problem.
Variations have occurred in the quality of the rolls produced by the same
process and with the same raw matenals and, as foreman Tony Wood put it ‘We
haven’t been able to understand why sometimes we produced better rolls than
at other times.’
This problem was a natural for the quality circle set up in this area last year (one
of two such circles created as a pilot scheme).
Since that time the members, with their inside knowledge of fuser roll
production, have identified three main areas where problems arise, and have
done a great deal of intensive investigation into the factors that govern the
processes in those areas.
They have re-examined the whole PFA spraying process, studying the
relationship between the thickness of the coatings and the reject rate to discover
the ‘vanables’, and are hopeful of establishing an optimum thickness.
They have also looked closely at the incidence of defects in the aluminium
coatings, and damage to the finished rolls which can occur in handling and toting.
In some cases, fairly simple solutions have been found and put into effect
without delay; for example, a change of sourcing for the aluminium wire resulted
in better quality raw matenal at no greater cost. Other proposals have involved
continued monitonng over a longer period or technical changes necessitating
financial outlay and results have yet to be assessed.
But already circle members are confident that their studies can result in a
dramatic cut in the overall reject rate — which means a saving in cost and time as
well as parts.
This is good news for Mitcheldean, at a time when quality improvement is of
paramount importance (see page 2).
Their investigation has been good for circle members too. Says leader Tony
Wood: ‘There has been an educational value in what we have been doing — we
have all added considerably to our detailed knowledge of fuser roll production.’
Quality improvement programme launched
raise our
Readers will have learned by now of the major ‘quality improvement programme’ which is
being mounted at Mitcheldean. The reasons for it bear repetition.
Although we have done consistently well against our quality and reliability targets, these
targets have proved not tough enough to meet and beat our Japanese competitors.
Fuji Xerox, our Japanese associate company, has successfully faced this same problem
and now, in the words of director Ron Morfee, ‘we must raise our sights in the same way
to maintain and improve our position in the eyes of our customers.
‘There is no magic about it; it is a programme that requires a lot of hard work over a
penod of years.
‘In one way or another, it involves just about even/one at Mitcheldean as well as all of
our suppliers.
‘One of the most important parts of this quality improvement programme is the
“people” side — getting everyone at Mitcheldean to understand what is required, and
why, and wanting to play his or her part.
‘I am quite certain that, given this explanation and training, Mitcheldean people can first
equal, then beat, anything the Japanese can do.’
Quality is
This is the message that has to be got over
to everyone, no matter what their job.
To tackle this fundamental task, an
‘awareness and involvement’ team has
been set up under the chairmanship of
personnel manager Derek Knibbs.
Their first strategic move has been the
preparation of a tape/slide presentation
which is being shown at normal departmental
communication meetings across
the site.
This enables local management to relate
it to the needs of their particular area and
to encourage the involvement of their
workforce in sharing ideas on how to
improve the way things are done.
Director Ron Morfee introduces the
presentation by outlining the senousness
of the market situation and the new
tougher rules this has created that we must
work to.
Ken Fox continues on this theme by
describing the efforts engineering are
making to meet these quality challenges.
In brief, the programme means a gradual
switch to prevention of defects instead of
trying to correct them after they have
occurred; it means refusing to accept that
quality defects are inevitable (Lydney has
set an example here — ‘getting it right first
time’ has resulted in figures that compare
very favourably with Fuji Xerox).
‘It is possible that, if we take enough
trouble to really understand the cause of
the defect, we can fix that cause
permanently. This means change not only
to things like design, tools and materials,
but also to the ways in which we think
about and earn/ out our jobs.’
Key areas
Apart from ’employee awareness’, the
quality improvement programme has
already set in motion a number of
improvement tasks in three other main
areas of activity:
• Design — Knowing that our designs are
right before production starts and to
specifications which are really costeffective.
• Supplier conformance — The quality of
our final product is very largely dependent
upon the quality of the parts going into the
product; we therefore have to make our
suppliers aware of the new standards
which we now require of them as well as of
• In-process defects — This aspect
covers the correction of errors in the
building of the product before they reach
end-of-line audit.
To support the steering committee,
which meets regularly to plan and review
progress, a number of task teams cam/ing
out more detailed work on a crossfunctional
basis have been set up.
Already engineering, manufacturing
engineering and materials functions are
working together on the top 50 component
defects. A number of critical vendors have
been visited and considerable support has
been received.
Significant progress has been made in
the toting task, known as ‘Totem’, and
rapid action taken by assembly and quality
assurance in agreeing a procedure for
closing the loop on defects on the line.
The excellent contribution people at all
levels have been making in their own work
area through taking part voluntarily in
‘quality circles’ has already been
The use of the usual internal communication
channels for the setting up of
training programmes is expected to
provide further opportunities for the
shanng of ideas.
Our maxim
‘However specialized our sen/ice, however
remote from the shop floor our work may
appear to be, even/thing we do should be
directed at making better machines at
lower cost than those of our competitors’.
That is the maxim that everyone is asked to
‘Quality improvement affects us all.
Improvement won’t be painless — change
never is!
‘But working together improving results
will be a satisfying achievement.
‘There really is no alternative for our
sun/ival — let alone if we are to “beat the
(We shall be reporting on the progress
made in the various key areas in future
Tackling the task of employee awareness.
^ At a recent meeting the QIP steering committee received a
presentation f r om Kevin Horrobin on the centralized corrective
action (CCA) programme being started within the assembly
B This picture marks a milestone in our Lydney operation. It is now
21 months since the start-up of 2300 assembly and in that time it
has kept on schedule, meeting quality targets, and has acquired a
company-wide reputation for outstanding reliability.
Congratulations, Lydney!
The association’s annual dinner takes place this year at the
Chase Hotel, Ross-on-Wye, on 15 May and once again Rank
Xerox chairman Hamish Orr-Ewing is to be our principal guest.
Lilian Criddle is a ‘no fuss’ person but it was because of
ill-health that her retirement in March had to go unmarked by a
fitting presentation.
With 38 years’ service, Lilian was our longest serving
female employee; she first worked in the coil-winding
department, transferring to electrical sub-assembly, and in
recent years was engaged on harness assembly prototypes
— a task in which she acquired great expertise.
Said manager Richard Matthews, ‘She has always been a
first-class operator and a ven/ loyal company person.’
Another member who also ‘went quietly’ in March was
Jack Cooper of works engineering.
Jack joined us 19 years ago, starting as a fitter in the old bid
18 machine shop and, as Manager Keith Jones says, he has
covered most aspects of works engineering at the sharp end’
in his time.
He moved into supervision and was manager, production
maintenance group 1, in the plant and services section when
he retired.
Both Jack and Lilian have our best wishes for the future.
Earttiquake victims visit us
‘That was where I went to school’, said one Italian student pointing to
a picture of a devastated village near Naples which appeared in the
recent Rank Xerox International Review. He was one of a party of
12 earthquake victims from the disaster areas near Naples who
visited Mitcheldean on 23 March. They were enioying a 12-day
holiday in Ross-on-Wye, arranged by Len Harper, mayor of Ross who
is one of our pensioners, following an appeal by Mrs Eunice Roberts.
The party toured the site and then enjoyed lunch at which Len was
presented with a £150 cheque towards the cost of the holiday
(Mitcheldean also provided transport). Rank Xerox as a whole
has contributed some $100,000
towards the relief of the stricken
areas. Seen with the Italians and
their hosts in our photo is
Ferruccio Marangon of works
engineering (centre front) who
helped out as interpreter, along
with Barbara Snell
(language services).
In our line of vision
A royal reception
Although Rank Xerox holds the royal
warrant, a visit to Buckingham Palace is not
a frequent occurrence for Mitcheldeaners
— or so we thought.
Now suddenly we have three such visits
to report.
The first occasion was on 12 Februan/
when a royal reception was held for
winners of the Queen’s Award for Export
and Technology in 1980.
Invited to represent the company,
together with Rank Xerox chairman
Hamish Orr-Ewing, were two Mitcheldean
people — mechanical adjuster Tony East of
CBA assembly and machine shop foreman
Norman Rudge.
Chauffeur John Bowkett drove them to
London and they met Mr Orr-Ewing at
Rank Xerox House; he took them on to the
palace in his car for the evening reception.
After waiting in a gallery, their names
were announced and they went forward to
shake hands with HM the Queen, Prince
Charles and the Duke of Gloucester.
Then they joined the rest of the 300 or so
people attending — among them the Prime
Minister, Mrs Margaret Thatcher, Sir Keith
Joseph, the Industn/ Secretan/, Trade
Secretar/John Biffen and members of the
Queen’s household.
They had refreshments and while the
three of them were chatting with a group
from another company, the Queen came
over. ‘Mr Orr-Ewing did the introductions
and she talked with us in a friendly way
about our line of business’, said Norman.
(Note for the ladies: she was wearing a
green dress, pearls and ear-rings and a
sapphire and diamond brooch).
To round off the evening right royally, Mr
Orr-Ewing took Norman and Tony out to
dinner. The conversation took a mechanical
engineering turn as ‘he told us all about his
workshop at home and the steam launch
and traction engine he is working on’, said
They thoroughly enjoyed themselves
and eventually arrived back home after
midnight having had a most memorable
day. (For Tony it was also a landmark in his
30th year with the company).
Norman Rudge and Tony East with chairman Hamish Orr-Ewing pictured at Rank Xerox House
before attending the reception at Buckingham Palace.
Energy director sees Delta
After attending a two-day energy meeting
in London last January, Merritt Chandler,
Xerox energy programmes director, toured
EMSD sites and had discussions with the
respective site directors.
Jack Tester, EMSD energy co-ordinator,
told us that Mr Chandler was impressed
with the level of activity and achievements
in EMSD over the past months.
Here at Mitcheldean he showed
particular interest in our Delta 1000 energy
management system which controls much
of the site’s heating, lighting and
ventilation, and our picture shows him (fifth
from left) hearing about its
capabilities from Julian Shufflebotham
of works engineering.
Within the next 12 months energy
control will be extended to Lydney and
Cinderford giving maintenance the facility
to check temperatures, write programmes
and so on from Mitcheldean. ‘In fact, we
shall be aware of problems at Lydney
before they are!’ said Julian.
Seen with Mr Chandler are RX energy
manager Gordon Webb, Mitcheldean’s
energy conservation manager Tony
Newman, Jack Tester, works engineering
manager Graham Bunt and, on Mr
Chandler’s left, Keith Jones, manager plant
& services within works engineering.
• 3ave meets Lady Diana The next story concerns not two people on one visit, but one person on two visits to Buckingham
Palace — both in connection with personal achievements.
On hisfirst visit on 10 March, 20-year-old RX apprentice Dave Barrell accompanied the High Sheriff
of Gwent. The occasion was a conference and reception to bring together people in various counties
who had joined in the Queen’s Silver Jubilee scheme whereby half the local celebration proceeds
were invested in a trust for future good works, and half were spent on some kind of community
Dave’s contribution had been to organize a squad from the Army Cadet Force (with whom he was
recently commissioned as a second lieutenant) and help clear the way for the conversion of an old
school building into a community centre.
Dave was given a day off work for the London event. The conference was held in the
Commonwealth Building, after which they attended the reception at the palace. And that made Dave
surely the first person at Mitcheldean to talk with the newly engaged Prince Charles and Lady Diana
‘It was all quite informal’, said Dave, ‘and they were extremely friendly.’
Some weeks later the postman must have been intrigued to have to deliver a second large white
envelope, stamped only with the royal ‘ER’, to Dave’s address. This was to summon him to receive
his Duke of Edinburgh award certificate from the hands of the Duke himself.
To win this award, yet more physical exertion was called for, including a 50-mile hike; Dave also
helped to set up a scout group in Gwent and completed several years’ service in the county Army
Cadet Force.
We’d like to add our congratulations to those he received from royal circles.
Dave Barrell, now in the fourth year of his electronic technician apprenticeship, has been
working closely under Julian Shufflebotham’s direction on developing the Delta 1000.
i imesharmg transier
A Migration that is saving Millions
At Mitcheldean we currently have 14
Diablo terminals in various locations around
the site that are linked into TIMS 68.
TIMS is short for ‘timesharing
information management services’, and
TIMS 68 is a computer service run by
general services division based in Webster
that uses the APL programming language.
This language — one which is easy for
mere human beings to understand — was
developed by a company named I.P.Sharp
and, prior to September 1980, Rank Xerox
was using the Sharp computer in Toronto
via Sharp transatlantic data lines.
However, since we already had a
computer in Webster that had spare
capacity, it made sense to use it and save
ourselves between three and four million
dollars a year across the whole of Rank
The task of transferring the Mitcheldean
timesharing usage from the I.P.Sharp
computer bureau to the Xerox TIMS
system 68 was undertaken in two phases.
The first was to ‘migrate’ the users’
programmes and data but to continue
using the I.P.Sharp transatlantic network to
access the Webster computer.
This was achieved in Mitcheldean by Bill
Constable and Andy Herndge of MSIS
group technical support, together with
other project team members, Xerox, Rank
Xerox and I.P.Sharp, assisted by
Mitcheldean users and Brian Down of
information services as timesharing coordinator.
Phase 1 was finally completed with a
minimum of disruption on 8 September last.
The second phase was to install a
transatlantic line to interface with the
EMSD telecommunications network, thus
giving direct access to Xerox computer
This was achieved by the end of February
1981 in Mitcheldean with the help of Tony
Wilson and Tony Kraneveld of group
technical support, again with the cooperation
of the users and Rob Powell who
succeeded Bnan as co-ordinator.
This further reduced costs by the
introduction of a ml charge for data
Mitcheldean site timesharing users are
divided into a number of separate cost
centres, based on their particular function
(technical services, business planning and
control, inventor/ control, commodity
operations and others).
A timesharing steward is appointed
within each cost centre and he liaises with
Rob Powell in the event of problems or for
general support.
Owing to the fact that it is ven/ easy to
spend large sums of money in computer
time, a tight control is kept on the budget
allocation and the spend that is incurred by
each cost centre.
One of the more interesting aspects of
the system which has increased in usage
since migration took place is the ‘mailbox’
Sometimes referred to as electronic
mail. It is a means whereby timesharing
users are able to communicate with each
other anywhere in the Xerox world.
Lome Baynham of inventory control uses the terni,, :u oie bid 44 telex room to produce the
Mitcheldean inventory monthly outlook. In the foreground is telex operator Karen Mason.
sender if his message has been received.
Messages can even be classified (for
example, if marked ‘urgent’ they will be
printed out in advance of non-urgent
messages) — it’s all part of the mailbox
service. R.C.C.P.
One of its tremendous advantages is that
the cost of sending a message is the same
no matter where a user sends it. For
example, it would cost no more to send a
message from Mitcheldean to South
America than it would to send a message
from building 44 to building 50.
The method of operation is quite simple.
A timesharing user at Mitcheldean signs on
to his mailbox account by tapping in a
special code on his terminal and specifying
the unique mailbox destination code of the
After the message is sent it will remain
on file in the TIMS computer at Webster
until the addressee ‘asks’ for his mail; he
does this by feeding in his personal access
code via any terminal connecteo to the
network, whereupon it prints out the
In short, mailbox is an electronic system
of communications between people, not
The system enables messages to be
edited on the terminal before being
transmitted, ‘carbon copies’ it to several
persons if requested, and informs the
Among the users of mailbox at Mitcheldean are international maintenance engineering
(formerly known as field engineering) who look after the interests of RTSDD and TS&D on site.
Here Trudy Hook, secretary to IME site manager John Barratt, demonstrates the use of an
additional facility — a portable terminal known as the ‘Silent 700′ — which came in handy at a
multinational conference held in Cheltenham some time ago.
Timesharing’ (renting computer time) offers a means of using the services of a large mainframe
computer which may be thousands of miles distant, and accessing any files held by that computer
The only equipment needed is a terminal and a conventional telephone fitted with a device called a
coupler for converting signals. The service, which is essentially for low volume enquiries, makes it
possible for a user to assess the value of different strategies, test various programmes, or do
complicated arithmetical calculations; it also allows users to develop their own programmes.
£2,000 in awards to students
We aim to be unbeatable
It was certainly a ‘day for stars’
on 30 January when Mitcheldean
people gathered to receive
ifinancial awards for success in
their professional studies.
Apart fronn the trophy winners
featured in our last issue, there
were others who had given ‘sparkling’
performances: Brian Moore
(industrial engineering), who
gained distinction in all subjects in a
Droduction control diploma course;
David Powell (business planning
and control), IIM diploma gained
with distinction; Peter Putsch
(works laboratory), best student of
the year in the IIM certificate
course; plus a high degree of
success from John Bearham (personnel)
with an MPhil. and Roger
Garlick (engineering) with a BSc.
Further indication of our determination
to become ‘the best in the
Xerox world’ lies in the fact that
we have no less than 21 people
now studying for HND, both in the
technical and commercial sphere,
reported Peter Grainger, manager,
organization, training and development.
Although a record sum of £2,000
was handed out by director Ron
Morfee in financial awards, the
actual number of students
receiving them was lower than in
previous years.
This, explained Peter, was a
result of the careful approach taken
to ensure that people embarking on
further education did not do so
without the support of their local
management, and that their
studies were in line with their
development on site.
‘We are making the whole thing
more business-orientated’, he
Mr Morfee reaffirmed that it was
the company’s policy to encourage
everyone to develop their potential
and give them a chance to use that
potential. And after congratulating
the students, he filled in the background
to their good work with a
review of how the company as a
The successful
Technical v„ar-Paul Ward.
Apprentice of the r e a r Pa^^^^^
^Pst year ^^^3′”^9t,en Lew.s, David
Richard Lee. StepriSteven^^^^
Pudge, P a ^ ‘ ^ ^ ‘ r t m Mechanical-
Craft Studies, Part IM^ Christopher
Gerald Dram tothtv^3rt,nWvrnan,
Glayson Kevin^r Read ,i
I^SMd o S . A*»” Lev-B.
Miles and Bnan Stephen ^ ^ ^ ^^
Beach, Kevin James.
Indentures ^ opgrd Keith Evans,
David Beach, ‘^^Y^^^X^es. Gary
^ ^ ^ ‘ ^ Mould Col.n Price,
nf Industrial Safety Officers,
(nstitut-onoflndust .
C – i r _ r j o r S p r a . e V . ^ ^ ^ ^
Supervisory Swcl-es^ N 3^,3^
o’^^^r^^ice^^’^S Short, Gordon
Ppter Bounce, ^^”^’I^^^.A powell
Sn^’h, D.p’om|-BXA>an Carney,
(distinction), Paul BU
Tony Day.
Gaf’«=*’ f Philosophy (Occupat’ona’
^s^;c^h%S’°ohn Bearham,
Bridgette Jones
ManynCox c„„„I.B.ian
whole, and Mitcheldean in particular,
were doing.
Referring to the financial results
for 1980 earlier announced by Rank
Xerox he said: ‘It is not the sort of
performance we are used to.
Because of currency problems and
the strong pound, our profits were
11 per cent down.’
But there was no cause for
pessimism. ‘I hasten to assure you
that you are still working in one of
the major growth industries, and
for one of the most successful
companies around.’
Our very success was attracting
competition. Last year 28 new plain
paper copying machines were
introduced, making a total of 130
plain paper copiers now available
from 30 different companies in
Europe, America and Japan.
That is why life is getting
tougher and our profit margins are
being squeezed. We used to regard
it as normal that income and profits
would go up by about 15 per cent
every year, but last year our income
rose by only 6 per cent. We don’t
want this trend to continue.’
To the question: What shape is
RXMP in to face the future? Mr
Morfee replied: ‘Never better.
‘In the last couple of years we
have completely restored our
reputation as a factor/ that can be
re led on to meet its production
schedules and quality and cost
targets. Such a reputation was hard
to build up but it is so easy to lose.
But pressure from Japan
continued and at the low end of the
market Japanese companies could
beat us on cost and quality. All
Xerox plants faced this same
problem — ‘Our products are too
expensive, and that is a continuing
noise you are going to hear from
me’, he emphasized.
The shop floor was where
even/thing came to fruition and
every effort must contribute to
As well as producing on
schedule, we must cut our costs —
on energy use, on the rents paid for
off-site storage, on wages — and
we must improve quality — get all
defects out.
‘We don’t want to be second
best. We insist we want to be
best’, he said, ‘and we must work
towards that objective.
‘With well qualified people and
good teamwork (and I see more
and more of that), then I think we
shall be unbeatable.’
A.Paul Ward receives the Andrew Dowding
‘apprentice of the year’ award f r om director
Ron Morfee.
B. Commercial and management award
winners — among them several who
achieved marks of distinction.
C. Successful NEBSS students.
D. Some of those who received indentures,
having completed their apprenticeship.
New Facilities bring greater savings
Discussing plans for tuither improvement are (from left) Phil Kelly of plant engineering,
refurbishing manager Graham Linley, Phil James f r om the works laboratory and Eddie Hill,
finishing planning manager, MED.
Gerald Newman vacuums off as much loose toner as possible i a j – i ^ i u processor before it
goes in the de-dusting booth. On the right are inspector Alan Hames ana Tony Cole of MED.
‘Eyelashes’ keep the dust inside as Paul Elliss operates an air gun in the de-dusting booth.
Watching is foreman John Parry.
gets an uplift
Waiting in the queue for examination are
bodies in varying conditions. Some have a
few minor disabilities; some are ‘burnt out
cases’; others have even been the victims
of cannibalisation and are in urgent need of
spare part surgen/.
The bodies we’re talking about are DBA
and CBA machines which arrive at
Mitcheldean from anywhere in the field —
from Didcot to Denmark.
And the department where they come
for a new lease of life is the refurbishing
area in bid 24/1 which is itself being
Refurbishing is a rapidly growing activity
on site. It took off last year — initially on
5400 machines — when teardown was
transferred back from Lille.
‘Then’, says manager Graham Linley,
‘when we started “scoping” on the 9400,
we realized that we would have to enhance
our facilities to cope with the bigger
‘What drove us was the desire to
improve environmental conditions for the
operators, and increase efficiency by
reducing the amount of sheer physical
effort required. At the same time it was
important to achieve cost savings by
recycling solvent as much as possible and
reducing energy consumption.’
The most significant step in this direction
has been the installation of new cleaning
After initial inspection, each arriving
machine is given a classification which
controls the extent to which it is stripped.
The panels are taken away for washing
and possibly repainting, while the subassemblies
being retained and the
machine base itself have to go through a
cleansing routine.
First, dust and toner must be removed,
and this is now done in a new, totally
enclosed air blasting (or de-dusting) booth.
After the machine or sub-assemblies
have been wheeled into the booth, the
doors are shut tight. Then the operator
inserts a special angled air gun through one
of two openings with plastic ‘eyelash’
This way he can blow the dust off
without getting dusty himself and he gets a
full view through the window of what’s
happening inside. Instead of drawing on
the surrounding warm air, and wasting
energy, outside air is ducted into the booth.
As particles are blown off they are carried
away outside to a kind of giant vacuum
This extraction system, known
technically as a pulse-jet bag filter, collects
the dust on fine filters which are designed
to catch 99.9 per cent of the particles. The
cleaned air is discharged to the atmosphere
while the collected dust falls into a hopper
at the base.
Since the filters are self-cleaning, the
plant needs minimum attention and is
expected to speed up the cleaning process.
Previously machines had to be moved
round on their own castors while in the
booths and this required considerable
effort, particularly in the case of the larger
The problem has been ‘got round’ by
having a turntable set in the floor —
motorised in the de-dusting booth and
manually operated in the four new solvent
spray booths.
\\ complete contrast to the two original
cabins, all the new booths have been
painted white (two-pack acn/lic paint which
can be washed down made this feasible),
while overhead fluorescent tubes have
improved the lighting without increasing
energy consumption.
In order to reduce losses in the solvent
spray booths, the extraction system has
been changed and a grid floor installed so
that droplets of solvent are blown down
and away from the atmosphere. Even the
type of solvent used has been changed for
the better.
Gleaming chromium-plated trolleys are
another acquisition. When each machine is
stnpped, the sub-assemblies are placed on
one of these, and both trolley and machine
stay together throughout the whole
operation — cleaning, re-working of any
components, and rebuilding to the required
‘We haven’t reached the end of the line
yet’, says Graham. The next major step wi
be the installation of a tunnel washing and
drying machine which will cope
automatically with the side panels.
Good technical facilities
alone don’t guarantee a good
end product; what counts is
how people perform using
those facilities.
Says Graham: ‘I’ve a good
team and they are doing a
remarkable job’.
The giant vacuum cleaner
outside bid 24/1 filters off 99.9
per cent of the dust from the
de-dusting booth. Our picture
was taken prior to the
commissioning when plant
electrician Andrew Hoare was
working on the installation of
„ctive gear cleans a 9400 machine in one of the new solvent spray booths.
Ibp specimens
At the Sea Angling Club’s annual general
meeting on 19 February, awards for specimen
fish went to Dave Adams for a black bream of 41b
10oz, and to Ollie Evans for a bass (81b 12oz).
Dave’s bream, being 15.625% over the club’s
official specimen weight, also won him the
club’s ‘best fish of the year’ shield.
Pat Aston, former treasurer of the club, kindly
presented the awards.
Officers elected for 1981 were: chairman —
Ray Carter: secretar/— Roger Aston: treasurer
— Ollie Evans: social secretar/ — Roger
Kempster: fish recorder— Tern/ James: other
committee members — Dave Adams, John
Gwilt, John Stanhope.
Boat trips to Dartmouth or Brixham are taking
place every month during 1981 right up to
December, and anyone who would like further
information is asked to ring Roger Aston on ext.
Rubber Duck is coming
September 5 — keep this date free in your diary
for the ‘Rubber Duck’ — the largest roadshow
disco in Europe, to be held in the ballroom by
arrangement with the Motor Club. You’ll need
to bring your dark glasses, the computercontrolled
lightshow is fantastic!
Book your ticket early to avoid disappointment
by nnging Graham Jones on ext. 427.
Those who enjoy treasure hunts will be glad to
know the club hope to arrange two or three this
season: watch your noticeboards for details.
Last Waltz
The Dancing Club has danced its last waltz.
Sadly, at the annual general meeting held on 10
March, it was decided to wind up the club
because of lack of sufficient support.
Looking back to 31 January, the club ran a
coach trip to the Tenth Anniversan/ National
Custom Car Show. It was the first time the show
had been held at Olympia (change of venue was
mainly because of the bonfire they had at
Alexandra Palace recently), and the much larger
hall enabled all the vehicles on show to be
displayed in the main arena, not in the back alleys
as at Ally Pally.
It seems people prefer looking at custom cars
to seeing new production line cars — the
proposed trip to the Motor Show at Birmingham
NEC last October had to be cancelled, due to lack
of interest.
As w e went to press the club was planning to
have Neil Forrest and Graham Cox of Ross &
District Motor Sports Club, to show those who
intend to navigate on rallies or road tests what
they ought to know. Everything was depending
on enough response from navigators and
prospective navigators . . .
With the karting trophies already in hand, Roger Ellis (right) of MED electronics, assisted by his
mechanic Tim Morley-Jones (tool room), would appear to be well on the way to achieving a
fine track record. The RX Motor Club is demonstrating its confidence in Roger by sponsoring
h im this season, so both club and company get a quick commercial in motoring circles every
time Roger goes round the track. (This picture was tal electronics).
or the future
The Amateur Computer Club plan three open
evenings this season (hotel venues had still to
be decided as w e went to press). The first will
take place on 13 May, the other two on 14
October and on 13 January in 1982.
Previous ones have been very popular and
we strongly recommend them, especially to
non-initiates who would like to discover
painlessly how amateur computers tick (or
Another highlight on the new programme
will be a visit to the Bnstol Apple Computer
Club, and there will be regular meetings with
guest speakers.
Tony Burke having moved to Welwyn, the
club has acquired a new president in Terry
Gardner, while Mev Shelley continues as
vice-president. Other officers/committee
members are: secretary—Jose Vega-Lozano:
treasurer:—Keith Jones: Geoff Barnes, Steve
Hardcastle, Paul Milsom.
Who’s for
The Tennis Club starts its season this May,
and t w o courts will be available to members at
Crossfields, Ross-on-Wye, on Tuesday and
Thursday evenings.
A number of one-day tournaments have also
been arranged for Sundays throughout the
season, so if you enjoy a game of tennis in
competition or just for fun, the club would love
to add your name to its list of members.
Subscriptions are £5 per season: if you’re
interested, contact Mike Keen (ext. 986),
Helen Richards (219) or Ken Blackwell (1316).
Ken, by the way, is a smash hit when it comes
to cartoons, as you can see by the racquet
raver here whom he dreamed up to attract
attention to club notices. (Resemblance to any
current member is, we believe, entirely
! Darkroom
orightened up
The Photographic Club are happy to
report that their darl house has noyv been completely
They have stripped it out, painted the
walls a matt black, put down new floor
coverings, supplied heating and installed
‘safe lights’ interlocked with the airlock.
Members Martin Stock and Larry
Williams did all the hard work and ‘we
didn’t ask for funds from anybody,’ says
chairman Mike Wilkinson.
Now that members have light, warm
conditions in which to work and need not
fear having their prints ruined by a sudden
intrusion, the use of the darkroom has
greatly increased.
That’s the good news. The not-so-good
news concerns the programme.
The club lost to the CEGB in a colour slide
battle on 9 March — but nevertheless all
credit to our opponents for whom it was
their first competition.
Club prize nights have always been a
highlight of the season, but in view of the
prevailing circumstances, it has regrettably
been decided not to hold one this year.
As we went to press, preparations were
in hand for the AGM on 30 April.
tactics After being lulled into a false sense of security by the fives-to-sixes age
group at their party on 17 January, few were prepared for the onslaught
which took place the following weekend.
Montgomery of Alamein would have been proud of the tactics used: let
the adults think that they are in control the first party, soften them up on the
second, then send in the heavy mob on the third and final party to show
beyond all doubt who was in charge.
The entertainer for the seven-to-eights on 24 January was ‘Uncle Johnny’
— a conjuror who totally captivated his audience and actually achieved total
silence from them on more than one occasion.
The party continued with the annual confrontation between the ‘Liverpool’
team (all the girls) and the ‘United’ team (all the boys). As the competition
ended in a draw, it was decided that the adult captains of each team would
play a tie-breaker: this resulted in a momentous slide down the polished
surface of the ballroom floor by the boy’s captain, who limped off, thus
conceding victor/ to the girls.
The evening was rounded off happily with the annual visit from Father
Christmas (by special arrangement with Stan Seaborn).
On the following day at the nines-to-tens party, the scene was set by the
entrance of several demure young ladies who, with their sophisticated
hairdo’s and long chiffon party dresses, seemed set to put the rowdy and
rumbustious boys firmly in place but, contran/ to expectations, were quite
willing to prove that they could ‘mix it’ with the best of them.
After gathering strength at the customan/ film show, and gaining even
more energy from the magnificent spread put on in the canteen downstairs
(where several orbiting trifles were to be seen), the children were greeted by
a million decibel disco (at least it seemed that way to me, I must be getting
old . . . ) where inhibitions.were shed and, encouraged by the DJ, dancing
We’re sure the children would like us to say a big thank you to all who gave
up their time to make the three parties such a success.
l e picture
This much-labelled and apparently fragile parcel (it contained a portable TV) was presented to secunty
operations manager Guy Bedford (right) by personnel manager Derek Knibbs on his retirement last
February. It came with his colleagues’ good wishes for success with his new business venture. Guy
joined advanced planning in 1967, later moved into the transport and materials handling sphere and in
1977 became our first security operations manager. As a Fellow of the Institute of Materials
Handling, he lectures on that subject as well as on security, and until recently was very active with the
Coleford Amateur Dramatic Society in the vanous roles of president, chairman and stage manager.
Eyes on Safety
Total number of
accidents for period •
Jan/Feb ’80 Jan/Feb’81
Tony Nightingale joined us in 1963 as assistant to Jack Tester, then chief tool engineer, at a time
when we had just started tooling up 813, and with his previous wide experience helped to build up the
technical function at a crucial time in Mitcheldean’s history. He succeeded Jack in 1970 and took over
as manager of tool engineering department. Photography has long been a major hobby (‘that’s why I
have one shoulder lower than the other,’ he jokes); a former member of our own photographic club
and currently a member of Cheltenham Camera Club, he intends to develop this activity further. Our
picture shows him with colleagues at a Februar/ farewell party when MED manager John Roberts
presented him with an engraved glass tankard, and wished him well in his retirement.
The cumulative total for the current
safety year so far is 44, compared v^ith 56
for the same period last year.
If y o u have, then please —
mail it to me c/o Corporate Affairs, Bid 51/4,
or leave it at any Gate House for
collection by me,
or post it to me at Tree Tops, Plump Hill,
or ring me — ext 566 or Dean 542415.
l\/lyrtle Fovjier, Editor
The black beret that is so familiar a part of
Arthur Moore’s appearance has acquired a
classy touch. It now sports a threediamond
pin, marking its owner as a 30-
year sen/ice award holder.
Forall that time, Arthur has worked in the
same surroundings — among the steaming
cauldrons and bubbling baths that are an
essential part of the manual plating
operation down in the maltings area, where
piece parts for our machines get the
‘finishing’ treatment.
Arthur is a man of few words and we
couldn’t persuade him to be photographed,
but we’re pleased to be able to record his
achievement in this column.
Other a w a r ds
The following also recently became eligible
for company sen/ice awards:
20 Yea’-
February — Don Baldwin (supply), Nigel
Bayliss (engineering), John Goode (TED),
Francis Jones (finance), Ewen Martin
(MED), Don Meek (MED), Ralph Morns
(finishing). Myrtle Rosser (RX Lydney),
Bill Stephens (assembly), Tony Wood
(machine shop), Dave Young (RX Cinderford);
March — Bernie Gibbs (machine
shop), Tony Harris (small batch). Ken Hobbs
(RX Cinderford), Vic Morrell (transport),
Dave Robinson (MED), Roy Stern/ (CMSA).
Steve Morris (finance) to Judith Cross on
14 Februan/.
Edward Aston (off-site stores) nearly 8
years; Jack Brooks (MED) 18 years; Betty
Hart (electrical subs.) 15 years; Ivor Jayne
(production stores) nearly 18 years; Wilt
Marfell (stores) 12 years; Doreen
Motterham (cleaning sen/ices) 10 years;
Dave Owen (MED electronics) nearly 5
years; Bill Warren (parts mfg PCD) 18
years. (See also ‘LSA Letter’).
Louise Marie, a daughter for Roger Aston
(QA) and his wife Pat (formerly secretan/ to
Nigel Percival), on 6 March.
Simon John, a son for David Williams
(machine shop) and his wife Denise
(formerly spares packing), on 1 April.
We record with regret the deaths of the
following: pensioner John Coyne on 30
Januar/, aged 67; Les Stern/, aged 55, on
17 March — he worked in the supply centre
warehouse and had been with us for eight
years; assembly operator Pearse Hancox
on 22 March at the age of 59 after more
than 15 years’ service.
‘Sweet’ Diplomacy
When President Reagan was inaugurated last Januan/, a news item concerning his addict ,
beans caused 14-year-old Louise Miller to have nightmares in which she was being attacked by
thousands of the wretched things.
Never a person to take things like that lying down, Louise — whose mother, Angela, works in our
inance department — decided to write a letter (dare we say) of complaint to the President, fully
expecting it to be relegated to the presidential bin.
magine her surprise when, two months later, the following reply was received from the US
Embassy in London:
Dear Louise, The President, Mr Ronald Reagan, has asked us to thank you on his behalf for your
good v^ishes for his term in the White House.
We are sorry to hear about your “jelly bean” nightmares, and hope that by now they have turned to
pleasant dreams. Jelly beans don’t like being eaten late at night, it makes them aggressive, so if you
‘:ke them, eat them well before it’s bedtime.
With -jHqood wishes, Sinmrnlv J M. Ball, Public Affairs Office
‘^tpd in Enplnnd hv Tavlor Younq fPrintor’;^ L t d , Cheltenham