Page 13 - May 2017
P. 13

out and had not been serviced for years.   gratuities in the enterprise. Not one of
       The cost of second-hand machinery     them had had any previous experience in
       was sky-high and had a ready market.   the printing trade so the mistakes were
       There was a tobacco shortage also, which   all the more obvious. From somewhere
       involved my purchasing some for the   they had secured a very old Wharfedale,
       works in daily bulk orders from a nearby   double crown size I believe, for £100.
       shop. However, we pulled through, things   In their estimate it was a ‘fi ne machine’.
       started to improve, new buildings started   Actually it was so old that the inking
       to rise, new machinery was promised to   rollers had runners on the ends and
       occupy the new building. But I was not to   obtained their motive power from contact
       see this millennium – following several   with the machine bed – and I suspect from
       events I was discharged.              the forme as well. The hand-fed platen
         Scouring the streets looking for a   was treadled, sheets being fed in with
       printing shop
       which would
       engage my
       services was
       not a pleasant
       experience.
       Looking back
       now, after some
       sixteen years, I
       can remember the
       personal despair
       that was mine but
       also the treatment
       received from
       others was mixed
       indeed. One fi rm
       would appear
       not to have been
       ruffl  ed by the war
       and was doing
       very nicely, thank
       you. Another – I
       was going to large
       fi rms and down to one-man enterprises   the left hand and removed by the right!
       – was found to be struggling with some   The Wharfedale was also treadled when
       clapped-out machines – I actually opened   it was not receiving its electricity via the
       the door of a shop premises where the   electric light fl ex! I left them to their fate,
       erection of a Wharfedale was in progress   still believing that I was employed by the
       by the owner.                         printers who at that time produced the
         I took an afternoon off  to visit some   monthly magazine of the BMFPA – an out-
       friends of the family who were trying to   of-work printer, though but an apprentice,
       make a go of print – having sunk their   still has his pride!
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