Fac­tory folk take a break in the sun­shine

Black Country Bugle - - YOUR LETTERS - By GAVIN JONES

BOTH these images take us back to the days when many Black Coun­try folk worked for large fac­to­ries, a time when your work­place also served as the cen­tre of your so­cial life.

Sports teams, so­cial clubs, and works trips were the norm back then, and the pic­ture at left shows five work­ers from Dud­ley en­joy­ing a day out at the sea­side, in that ever-pop­u­lar des­ti­na­tion for Mid­lan­ders, Weston-su­per­mare.

Both snaps were sup­plied by reader Mar­lene Obhrai, whose mother Mar­jorie Ed­wards is in the Weston group, at far left. Mar­jorie passed her ex­ams for the Sir Gil­bert Claughton School, and at­tended for a time, but was taken out by her mother at the age of 14 be­cause the fam­ily needed an ex­tra wage. She went to work at Ewarts fac­tory in Dud­ley in 1937, and the works trip to Weston took place in the Au­gust of that year.

Above are a group of girls which in­cludes Mar­jorie’s half-sis­ter Jessie Gaunt, third from left. Jessie is known to have worked at Good­win’s Flour Fac­tory, also in Dud­ley, and at a foundry in Coney­gre, though as Mar­lene points out the girls look too clean for the foundry.

Jessie and Mar­jorie lived in Hill­crest Road, Dud­ley, and prior to 1936, in Mu­ni­tions Huts in Brew­ery Fields.

Do you recog­nise any of the uniden­ti­fied work­ers, or can you tell us any­thing more about the firms men­tioned above? We’d love to hear from you: email us on [email protected] coun­try­bu­gle.co.uk, give us a call on 01384 889000, write to us, or pay us a visit at Black Coun­try Bu­gle, Dud­ley Archive Cen­tre, Tip­ton Road, Dud­ley, West Mid­lands, DY1 4SQ.

Were these girls pic­tured out­side Good­win’s flour fac­tory at Kates Hill in Dud­ley?

A Ewarts works out­ing to Weston-su­per-mare

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