About Me

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I never wanted to be a fitter and I didn’t even know what a fitter was or did, until it was too late. The story of how I came to be one can be seen on my website: www.calvertonfitter.com After 45 years in industry working on such diverse things as aeroplanes and textile machinery I thought it would be a good idea to start a blog and to share some of the things that I've seen and done. Some of the posts are funny and some are sad. Some are political and some are about racism. Hopefully you will find them all interesting, and even entertaining!

My Favourite Posts

Some of MY favourite posts include: The Congo, Deltic (3 posts), On the Buses, The Bus Drivers Story, Classical Music and Sherry, Working in Karachi 1988, Going to Karachi 1988 (hilarious), Broken Mug, Tilbury (4 posts).

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Tilbury Docks

Getting to feel 'on the mend' and even went to a party on Saturday evening and consumed a little alcohol, first in 2 weeks. 30 staples to be removed from my knee midweekish, doesn't that sound joyous?
Back to the industry stuff. 1960 found me working on Tilbury Docks installing the machinery in a new flour mill. There were just a few of us fitters working directly for Carter Bros. and a few more employed by agencies and sent down from the Manchester area. It was quickly apparent that the agency guys thought they were the bee's knee's and even regarded themselves as self employed. And we were 'cowboys', they told us this direct, no whispering here. It turned out that they were the most hopeless bunch of whatsits I've ever worked with. One of them even admitted he'd been 'off the tools' for 9 years, as a petrol pump attendant! In fact he hadn't got any tools and bought a set from a catalogue at 5/- per week. It was the strangest thing I've ever seen. The square box had tools like calipers, punches and scriber hung round the outside and secured with there own lids while most of the rest were inside with a top lid. At every opportunity he would walk round the box opening the lids one at a time and smiling at the contents. I doubt he knew what most of them were for.
These agency guys were always kept together and one day one of them brought me a drill to sharpen as between them they had failed, big time. They had ground it up as if it was a pencil!! Crazy fitters. Let me add that some of the best fitters I've worked with since have been with agencies. Honest.

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