Author Topic: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo  (Read 23806 times)

Offline datman

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #18 on: Sunday 08 February 09 21:47 GMT (UK) »
Hello Porridge,
The memories are coming back thick and fast.
Bill Fraser was the Works Director at the time of the move but did not move to Scotland.
The office on Ilkeston Road was purpose built on part of the old Factory Site. Stan Hale and I had offices as did the Service Engineers for England who were based there. Jack Ogle who was known as Chief Estimator was also based there, he was responsible for all the tenders and quotations that went out to customers all over the World.
The clash of the Titans i.e. Scottish Engineers and English Engineers not agreeing over designs and production finally brought about the closure of the merged companies as they failed to finalize designs of new machines and hold there respective places in the worldwide market place. The main laundry machines at the time were large Washer Extractors and Ironing Machines. Each company had agreements with different American companies to make machines under license which made matters very difficult when looking to sell machines worldwide.
The Sterilizer Company was eventually sold off to a company called Denton Hellyer in Andover
The story of QE2 makes good reading. The ship was built on the Clyde at the John Brown shipping company. D & J Tullis had a factory not 500 yards from the shipyard yet Manloves a main competitor at the time, still won the tender. Much of the machinery was installed during manufacture of the ship. On the maiden voyage Manlove service engineers had to sail with the ship to ensure everything went well. The Laundry machinery would probably have lasted for say 20 years and was probably replaced at some stage or another. Manloves installed Laundry Machinery on many cruise ships including the Canberra! 
Stan Hale who was joint Managing Director with Arthur Gardner of the merged company Manlove Tullis Group Ltd never really worked well together. Stan and I both resigned in 1971 fed up with all the politics associated with the merger. It was incredable to deal with Unions on th Clyde at that time most very much aligned with the ship building industry. We could assemble Sterilizers at Nottingham with three Unions. We had thirteen to deal with in Scotland.
I do have some photographs of Sterilizers and many old leaflets which hopefully we could have a look at in May if there is a get together.
Incidentally on the photograph of the Rotary Dryer you can clearly see the machine number H22 which means the order was placed in 1922. The company was still making dryers in the 1960's mainly for British Sugar. When the sugar crystal was formed and had been through a centrifugal the sugar was finally dried by tilting the rotary drier sugar going in at the top and hot air being driven up from the bottom.
Keep the questions coming. I always wanted to write a book of the complete history of Manloves. I do know that the old Technical Director Ted Appleton started with one but then lost touch with him after the merger.
Regards
DATMAN

Offline porridge

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #19 on: Monday 09 February 09 16:58 GMT (UK) »
Hello Datman,

This is getting even more interesting as you are making me aware of things that I never knew at the time I did my mini apprenticeship or as a result of chats with my dad.

I recently did a search of Tullis and discovered some interesting articles about the company. I must have led a sheltered time at M&A as I didn't even realise there was such a strong competitor as Tullis until news of the 'merger' was announced.

On one of my reviews with Charlie Cox, the personnel manager(?), I told him I was interested in applying for a position with ICL and was surprised at the time that he didn't try harder to make me stay to serve my apprenticeship but then discovered what was happening with Tullis and maybe he was in a way helping me to make my mind up especially as I would not have been asked to transfer.

Last year me and my wife visited Liverpool as it was the European capital of culture and worth a visit. When I was driving from Southport down to Liverpool I turned a corner and saw signs marked: Walton, which immediately brought back memories of when dad used to take me to Walton hospital when we sometimes worked there at the weekend and even now very strong images of a chief engineer at the hospital by the name of Maurice Catlin.

I am not sure if you ever knew Maurice but he was such a nice guy, he used to build his own working steam engine models, probably the reason him and dad got on so well. I remember he had a small sailing boat that he took us out in, on the river Dee(?) dad nearly got swept away when rowing us to the shore as the tide was going out so quickly.

Another image I have of Manloves was going in on a Saturday morning/lunch time with dad where a guy called Billy(?) would fill up his Manloves service van (with the COG/M&A logo on the side) with petrol and wash the van for him whilst he was checking things in the ervice department ready for his work the following week.

Strange how the memories come flowing even more when one or two images are 'unlocked' but I have very vivid images of a M&A Xmas 'do' at the Victoria hotel in Nottingham where I received an apprentice award for my year as a result of passing my college work at People College of further Education where I had attended as part of my training.

Wow, I imagine a few more dreams tonight!

Regards
Porridge

Offline datman

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #20 on: Wednesday 11 February 09 13:07 GMT (UK) »
Hello Porridge
Yes Tullis were a very fierce competitor. At the time when Stan Hale was Sales Manager he and Ken Stretch who was Sales manager at Tullis would compete over most projects throughout Europe. Stan as MD persuaded the group that owned Manloves to buy Tullis and the plan was to level the site at Nottingham and build a complete purpose built factory with full open plan. A marvelous model was produced By Building Design Group of a fantastic new factory. However the plan backfired, the Engineer who was to examine the merger of the two companies was a Glaswegian can you believe and he produced a plan to the Melbray Group for moving Manloves to Glasgow. A lot of money was involved as very large grants were available from the Scottish Development Agency and also within the Group was a company that was to develop the site at Manloves and make an industrial complex for rent.
Charlie Cox who you mentioned came to Manloves following another company purchase, the company made Dry Cleaning Machinery. The development of new products for expanding the Manlove range into new markets failed mainly because of lack of good designs. Charlie later became personnel manager and made a very good job of that position.
I remember Walton Hospital well they had a CSSD with Manlove Sterilizers and a Laundry.
Yes I remember the dinners at the Victoria Hotel. Les Newton was in Senior management at the time. He was originally a service engineer with a small company in Edinburgh that serviced Manlove equipment. He later became Manloves service engineer for the whole of Scotland and the North East and was eventually promoted to Sales Manager. He and Stan Hale fell out over a new entrant to the management team a Dr. Love and Les left and started his own company Southtrim Autoclaves Ltd. They later made excellent Sterilizers and Autoclaves.
Keith Oates designed the worlds first solid state control for Sterilizers. A nightmare for me as he wanted to change the design daily. Imagine trying to write service manuals and produce drawings when they never matched the particular machine. Such was the interest in the idea that the largest manufacturer of Sterilizers in the world a company called AMSCO actually American Sterilizer  Co. tried to purchase a Manlove machine through an agent in Ireland to get hold of the design. Trevor Barson and I shipped them what was a Mk2 machine, air controlled unit which was the old design!! Today a simple computer you could buy of the shelf can be prorammed to operate fully a modern sterilizer. Southtrim actually did that in the end.
Hope the above keeps the grey cells working.
Best regards
DATMAN


Offline porridge

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #21 on: Wednesday 11 February 09 21:10 GMT (UK) »
Hello Datman,

Thank you for your latest posting, it makes very interesting reading, it shows a side of Manloves that I was not at all familiar with.

A previous responder indicated that there is a Manloves reunion every year in May. Do you attend and do you know who organises them as I would like to attend the next one. Are you still in touch with any of the people you mention? people like Ron Archer, Keith Oates and any of the service engineers that my dad worked alongside?

At a family celebration a yearago a guy who was an apprentice at Manloves ahead of me, who moved to the Royal or dinace factory after the move to Glasgow was there, i am not sure if you would remember him, his name, I think, is Bob Thomson. he worked with my brother at ROF and still keeps in touch with him.

Another image that just washed over me was a guy who had an office in the centre of a large area used for building Ironing machines. It backed onto Ilkeston road in the top corner of the complex, adjacent to the stores area. This guy used to have a white coat on every time I saw him. I think his name was Ernie Brooks(?). A very strict supervisor I seem to recollect. I worked in that area for a short time working alongside a guy who used to wire up the machines, his name was Richard Hunt and a colleague was John Dixon, both electricians working for Ron Archer. I think John tended to go out with the service engineers helping to assemble the machines on customers premises.

I wonder what would have happened if Manloves had been redeveloped and the new factory complex had been build on the previous ground. Would it still be there now having 'diversified'?

Wow, yet another memory; one of having my breakfast/break in the canteen which I seem to recall was managed by a large busted lady, cant remember her name but quite a matron like figure to a mere 17 year old apprentice. Whilst on that subject  I am now remembering a glass fronted office area just inside the complex on the right when returning from the canteen back towards the stores area with several secretaries/typists which we young guys would ogle every time we went past, one in particular but again I cannot remember her name.

I think Radford has gone down hill since the days of Manloves. I rarely go through that area but when I do I feel quite unsafe. I think the only area of the Manloves building still standing is the 'new build' areas that stand near what used to be a weighbridge immediately off Ilkeston road opposite the park area. I can remember this area being involved in setting up some machines that were attached to the back of an ironer that folded the sheets as they came off? I think there also used to be an Electricians workshop there as well.

When I occasionally dream of Manloves it is this general area that I seem to dream of the most but as i get older those dreams are few and far between. Its strange but although I went on to work for the last British computer Manufacturer ICL for 33 years until taken over by Fujitsu, it is still Manloves that I remember with fond memories the most. This may be because I heard and saw so much of Manloves as a child through conversations with my dad, Uncle Tom and Percy Gregory not to mention other 'characters' who dad socialised with.

Do you still visit the area at all and do you ever go past the old site?

Regards

Porridge

Offline datman

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #22 on: Thursday 12 February 09 15:11 GMT (UK) »
Hello Porridge
The reunion was always to take place on the first Thursday of the month of May in the pub on Ilkeston Road. I have not attended any for some years and will try and find out if one is taking place this year.
Ernie Brooks was indeed the Foreman of the Ironing Machine shop as it was known. Machines were fully assembled and tested then partly dismantled and erected on site with an A frame gantry. In most situations a Laundry would finish work on a Friday, the old machine would be allowed to cool and then the engineers and John Dixon would work flatout Saturday and Sunday dismantling and removing the old and installing and erecting the new so that production with the new machine could start Monday. When I was living in the West Country I would attend and help over the weekend  on most installations to ensure any problems arising on the Monday could be handled quickly.
John Dixon did not move to Glasgow. He set up his own business callled Metrofast in Long Eaton. His main business was to overhaul old machines and fit new Variable Speed drives to existing machines.
I do not visit the old site very much these days. I do know that to the left of the gate into the industrial estate stands a building that was erected by Manloves as the new Packing and Despatch department. The foreman was Len Squires. You have to cast your mind back to before container ships were built and export products were shipped in metal containers. Manloves shipped a large quantity of machinery abroad.  Products had to be placed in purpose designed wooden crates to ensure they arrived at their destination safe and undamaged. We shipped a lot of Sterilizers to Canada as many of the states followed British Technology although electrical Control panels had to work at 24v not 240. It is amazing how the memories of Manloves stick in your mind. They were not the highest of payers in Nottingham but there was terrific atmosphere where one made friends for life.
Regards
DATMAN

Offline porridge

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #23 on: Sunday 15 February 09 22:30 GMT (UK) »
Hello again Datman,

Its strange how a number of new memories and names have surfaced since chatting to you recently online.

I remember other service engineers that worked alongside my dad..

Ernie Taylor, slightly older than my dad but someone who I think dabbled in both Electrical and mechanical engineering issues on customer sites or at least someone who I think was perhaps more technical than a 'normal' service engineer? or was it he specialised on kit I was not familiar with?

Geoff Moore, a younger engineer than my dad, who I think lived at Clifton?

Cliff Frost, similar age to my Dad with similar experience. He was coincidentally on jury service at the same time as me and we even served on the same jury at one point in my 2 week stint.

I also remember a short guy, Walt ???? who I think was an electrician who always wore a light brown set of overalls? There was also a guy who worked on a massive lathe/boring machine, not far from the drawing office. he had a 'flat' appearance to his face and Ialways remember him tending his machine, with metal chad/burrs coming off the tool on his machine from machineing cast iron rolls?

Another silly fact was my personel number: 711, which I still am attracted to if I see it occur in say a mobile number, sort of a lucky string of digits.

I am skipping about a bit but I also remember a fitter, like Percy Gregory, who used to live nearby at Abingdon Square in Aspley. His name was Ron Bray.

I still have a copy of my Manloves Apprenticeship document in its wallet on which Charlie Cox overtyped 'part apprenticeship' due to its early tremination as a result of me leaving to join ICL as a result of the move to Glasgow. I also put a brand new 10 shilling note in the wallet at the time I received it to add some extra interest.

I wonder if there are any Manloves machines anywhere in the world? Wouldnt it be great to see one, even if not working but in a museum? Just the logo/transfer that dad used to have on the side of his compny van would be nice to see again.

Porridge

Offline datman

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #24 on: Tuesday 17 February 09 22:10 GMT (UK) »
Hello Porridge.
Some more names from the past.
Ernie Taylor I new very well. We shared a common interest in photography. He had a beautiful Exacta Relex Camera with Zeiss Lenses and extension bushes he had made himself out of solid brass. He was more than just a service engineer. He worked on many projects in the development department and one machine I remember well was a unit called the Easiprep. It was a machine for feeding sheets into ironing machines at high speed. He was skilled in Electrics,Pneumatics and mechanics, probably one of the most skilled engineers at Manloves other than Vernon Sibert, who was chief service engineer and travelled the world.
Cliff Frost was a vey good friend. He was an installation engineer working mostly on Ironing Machines. I sold a lot of ironing machines over the years and spent many a week end talking with Cliff.
I am sure there are Manlove Ironers still working in the U.K. in Industrial and Hospital Laundries. The cast iron beds and rollers would last almost for ever with the drive units being replaced every so often by the likes of John Dixon.
A new Laundry was built quite a few years ago near Preston in a very large prison. All the equipment was oil heated, a total uniques set of designs and I did hear the Ernie Taylor became the Site Engineer. That was the last I heard of Ernie.
Regards
DATMAN

I remember Geoff Moore and yes he did live in Clifton. Cliff Frost was an installation

Offline porridge

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #25 on: Wednesday 18 February 09 16:15 GMT (UK) »
Hello Datman,

Vernon Sibert! Yes I remember that name very well, did he have a Large jag or Wolsley car?

Are you in contact with any of the people whose names you mention?

I remember my dad returning from Ernie Taylors house(was it Lowdham or somewhere near there?) and he drove into a stationery lorry. he said it was due to a coughing fit but I think he was probably under the influence! he finsihed up in Hospital and looking back I am surprised that he didnt lose his job because I think he may have been banned from driving for a year?

I remember going to a garage to collect his tools from a Red Morris 1100 that was badly damaged. He was lucky to survive and at least it did stop him smoking (but not drinking!).



Offline Bob6

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Re: Help required on Manlove Alliott co ltd photo
« Reply #26 on: Thursday 09 April 09 22:45 BST (UK) »
Hello again Porridge,  The Manlove's Reunion is to be held at the Hyson Green Football Club on Friday 1st May.   I cannot make it!!!
I suggest we meet in Nottingham if that is OK with you.
I think the pub called The Bank, in Market Square near Friar Lane any day to suit you except Tuesday.  Say about 11am.
If you are interested you could invite datman, I have been following your messages with him with interest, he seems to be a mine of information on Manloves.
Bob6