James Ferguson

1999/179 James Ferguson interviewed at his home by Dr Heather Holmes on 10/11/1999

000 Starting work in Nelsons; dates; reasons for starting; move from Smith and Ritchie
032 Differences in working at Smith and Ritchie and Nelsons; moving work location; work undertaken by Smith and Ritchie
053 Hearing about the job; better prospects; four colour machines as opposed to single colour machine
070 Printing machines in Smith and Ritchie; types
075 Nelsons had two coloured machines; four coloured machine
079 Introduction of four coloured machine
084 Modernisation of machinery; Nelsons resting on laurels; had to move with the times
094 Change to litho
095 Litho department and its expansion; printing machines; machines to A & K Johnson when Nelsons closed
121 Presses and specifications
126 Labour organisation for printing machines; four colour; two colour
231 Good and bad apprentices; most apprentices became a journeyman
234 Apprentices moved around journeymen during training; progress during apprenticeship
265 Number of apprentices in litho department; apprentice allocation
279 Training; spending time at a range of tasks
283 Tricks on new apprentices
292 Initiations for journeymen
297 Lively culture in Nelsons
138 Shift pattern
144 Difficulties of working on night shift
154 More money for working nightshift; length of nightshift; shift patterns
170 Working between shifts; some jobs went from shift to shift
185 Working as a team on a shift
199 Started work on a two colour machine
204 Relations between journeymen and labourers; nature
209 Favoured partnerships
220 Range of work undertaken by apprentices
306 Party at closure of Nelsons; people entertained at it; large farewell event; range of people at event
346 Theme of the party was 'these were the days'
378 Do not remember pay off day; lot went down to A & K Johnson
379 Reaction to closure of Nelsons; ways of hearing about the closure
395 Work trends in 1960s; many firms closed as they could not be competitive; closure of firms
424 Lot of firms undertaking instant print
426 Ratio of workers in litho who went to W & A K Johnson; some made redundant
430 Destination and use of machines
438 Acceptance of Nelson employees by workers in W & A K Johnson; rivalry
448 Expression of rivalry; jealousy
460 Nelsonians in Nelsons; long tradition
471 Work and work practices; work roles
485 Roles of journeymen
494 Work organisation on four colour machine
503 Work relationships with journeymen
512 No use of litho stones in Nelsons; different presses needed for working with plates; conversion of presses
531 Letterpress in Nelsons; differences with litho
538 Overlap between litho and letterpress; differences
546 Advantages of litho over letterpress
550 Relations between litho and letterpress departments
588 Rivalry between litho and letterpress
563 Letterpress still used when Nelsons closed; took on work suited to litho; changed over work from letterpress to litho; reprint work confined to letterpress
580 Reprinting; printing AA Atlas and shift work
599 Settling down of jobs
606 Difficulties of working with long runs
619 Crosswords; keeping awake during nightshift
632 Differences of working on nightshift compared to dayshift
649 Strictness during the day
653 Ways of keeping awake on night shift; drinking of coffee
669 Rules for making tea and coffee; times for tea breaks
691 Falling asleep and going to sleep
698 Size of litho department; worked on shifts; number of men working at any one time
713 No women employed in litho department
719 Male culture
789 Expression of male culture; differences in male/female working in other firms
744 Women employed to lay on in letterpress until machines became fully automatic; no jobs undertaken by them
752 Modernisation of presses; litho built up gradually
766 Camaraderie in the department; differences between departments and shifts
782 People supportive of one another
785 Chapel; assisting individuals; people assisting one another when sick
703 Chapel may have organised annual trips
815 Nelsons and supply of social facilities
819 Not a member of any societies
824 Litho chapel; militancy
833 Stable conditions
836 Involvement of chapel
842 Work on chapel; people from management not involved
860 Procedures for complaining
871 Becoming a chargehand; important start in promotion ladder
878 Work of chargehand
889 Supervisors in litho department
894 Numbers and job of chargehand
895 Supervision hierarchy
906 Attitudes to people in supervisory work
914 Supervisors from outwith Nelsons; advantageous when setting up a new department
927 Some emphasis on health and safety; increasing concern
936 Moving plates
944 Accidents; nature and incidents; guarding of machines
965 Machines heavily guarded

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