Page 3.   Shelvoke & Drewry Enthusiasts' Club Newsletter - Spring 2017.

BUILDING WORK IN 1969.

This ‘P’ series Intapak leaving SD’s Icknield Way works shows the new three storey office block that was built in 1969.

Bill Smith, the son of Ken Smith SD’s Joiners’ Shop Superintendent at the time, photographed the new building and kindly
sent these photos to me.


I suspect that they were taken on a Saturday morning as the offices appear to be very quiet.

When I joined the company as an apprentice in 1963 this end of the main works housed the Works Manager, Len Gostling's, office and the assistant works manager, Arthur Stratton, then came the Tool stores with a basement area. Around 1958/59 the tool stores was moved into the Machine Shop and the area refurbished as the Drawing Office, Jig & Tool design office and the planning department. In total I spent around four years working in this area.

The above two photos show the new Drawing Office accommodated in the new block. I believe the young man at the left of the lower picture to be Geoff Lovatt, a fellow apprentice, but have failed to have his identity confirmed. Note that everone is wearing ties - they were obligatory! No signs of computers, each draftsman had his slide rule and faithful log tables.

The new Accounts Department shown above seems to have a full complement of workers. Again no computers, but somewhere would be a comptometer operator, as those using early calculating machines were termed. A sturdy typewriter adorns the typist's desk.

A new Board Room was also incorporated, presumably replacing the ‘mock Tudor’ Harry Shelvoke Board Room. Bill Smith commented: “1969 was a time when anything traditional was seriously undervalued, just ‘old fashioned’ and ripe to be swept away. The new boardroom table shown is an example of my father’s work.”

In this final pictureof the west end of the new block the ramp down to the basement is shown, which I believe still held jigs and fixures - some dating back to the World War II Welfreighter submersible. I was amused to see the collection of brake drums in the yard. In the 1950’s these were stored in this area to ‘weather’ before machining. It was nine years since the ‘W’ type which used them went out of production but a clearly a few still remained. With the inroduction of the 'T' series axles were bought in from Kirkstall Forge.

Bill's photos brought back happy memories. Perhaps they will for you, or else give you a glimpse of where SD producs were produced.