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History of Laycocks

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Hi Folks.

 

I joined Laycocks in 1966 as a student apprentice, and stayed 'till 1974. The training centre was firmly run by Mr Lambert! I was top apprentice and won the Laycocks Prize.

 

I studied for ONC at Granville College, and took a Degree at Bradford University.

I won two National Awards for ONC.

 

As an apprentice I worked in just about every department:

Machining(OD & Clutch), Setting (OD J Type Annulus), Inspection (RR, Clutch, OD, GE, Foundry, Forge), Production Control (Clutch), Production Engineering (OD, Ford Crapi FF, US 'Spider' Gear Box), Overdrive/Clutch road testing and Problem Investigation, Foundry Labs, Forge, Tool Room (Clutch), etc.,

I worked in heat, cold, asbestos, cyanide salts, foundry dust, forge noise, test booth oil and noise combined! I have been covered in cutting oil, fingers full of gear shavings, wet through with soluble oil.

You name it I seem to have been involved!

 

After I graduated I was sent on Management Courses with GKN HQ Graduates and was made Manager of the Overdrive Refurbishment Dept.

 

The Dept. was new, and I had to set it up from scratch. Before this ODs were refurbished in a shed on the car park. The reason it was needed was that David ?????, one of the directors, had piled literally thousands of service exchange units in stillages, and had had them hidden in an out of the way corner of the foundry.

He had supplied new units in exchange!!!!

 

None of the personnel who were assigned to me were trained in anything. In fact they were rejects from other depts.

 

I did not want this. I did not want to waste my Engineering skills as a works manager. I wanted to work in design, but GKN/Laycocks would not listen, so I left.

 

My experience is a good example of typical British Management philosophy:

 

Hide what makes you look bad, even if it costs the company money.

Don't try to do the job properly.

Show no respect for Engineers.

 

It's a sad shame that Laycocks went to the wall because of upper management ineptitude, but it's true of the rest of British Industry which has also collapsed!

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I remember George Toothill, he was a Charge Hand in the Cluch Dept. Spring Shop. He was very anti-union, in fact I got the impression that he was anti-just about everything. A thoroughly unpleasant and obnoxious individual who definitely didn't like it when you stood up to him and told him to **** off if he tried to give you any grief. A nasty piece of work without a doubt.

 

hiya, too true I couldn't word it better I asked for a tool change it was when he first started in the machine shop and he put the boring tools in the machine upside down,

Edited by willybite

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hiya, too true I couldn't word it better I asked for a tool change it was when he first started in the machine shop and he put the boring tools in the machine upside down,

 

This is just idle curiousity on my part but I was wondering if George Toothill was the father of one of my junior school pals, Barry Toothill. I remember Barry's dad as being a serious, religious type who never smiled or talked to me; I always felt a bit uncomfortable in his presence. He would have been in his mid to late 30s in 1956/7. He used to get around on one of those push bikes with a little motor on the back axle.

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This is just idle curiousity on my part but I was wondering if George Toothill was the father of one of my junior school pals, Barry Toothill. I remember Barry's dad as being a serious, religious type who never smiled or talked to me; I always felt a bit uncomfortable in his presence. He would have been in his mid to late 30s in 1956/7. He used to get around on one of those push bikes with a little motor on the back axle.

 

hiya hard to say out side work he would walk past our house at the bottom of gleadless rd heeley as to where he lived i did not know he was a yes no man,

 

---------- Post added 21-01-2016 at 08:46 ----------

 

Hi Folks.

 

I joined Laycocks in 1966 as a student apprentice, and stayed 'till 1974. The training centre was firmly run by Mr Lambert! I was top apprentice and won the Laycocks Prize.

 

I studied for ONC at Granville College, and took a Degree at Bradford University.

I won two National Awards for ONC.

 

As an apprentice I worked in just about every department:

Machining(OD & Clutch), Setting (OD J Type Annulus), Inspection (RR, Clutch, OD, GE, Foundry, Forge), Production Control (Clutch), Production Engineering (OD, Ford Crapi FF, US 'Spider' Gear Box), Overdrive/Clutch road testing and Problem Investigation, Foundry Labs, Forge, Tool Room (Clutch), etc.,

I worked in heat, cold, asbestos, cyanide salts, foundry dust, forge noise, test booth oil and noise combined! I have been covered in cutting oil, fingers full of gear shavings, wet through with soluble oil.

You name it I seem to have been involved!

 

After I graduated I was sent on Management Courses with GKN HQ Graduates and was made Manager of the Overdrive Refurbishment Dept.

 

The Dept. was new, and I had to set it up from scratch. Before this ODs were refurbished in a shed on the car park. The reason it was needed was that David ?????, one of the directors, had piled literally thousands of service exchange units in stillages, and had had them hidden in an out of the way corner of the foundry.

He had supplied new units in exchange!!!!

 

None of the personnel who were assigned to me were trained in anything. In fact they were rejects from other depts.

 

I did not want this. I did not want to waste my Engineering skills as a works manager. I wanted to work in design, but GKN/Laycocks would not listen, so I left.

 

My experience is a good example of typical British Management philosophy:

 

Hide what makes you look bad, even if it costs the company money.

Don't try to do the job properly.

Show no respect for Engineers.

 

It's a sad shame that Laycocks went to the wall because of upper management ineptitude, but it's true of the rest of British Industry which has also collapsed!

i

hiya i read your letter with interest about the upper management,it always stuck in my gullet the way they worked,we had a change of manager by the way i worked in the clutch assembley, one time les hayles it was we thought great we have someone who knows the gripes on the shop floor, but alas they had him thinking the same as them, i remember one year at pay rise time we on the shop floor finished with £ 5 per week, then we heard afterwards the upper management gave themselves a £3,000. per year rise reason being there was less of them than us

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Thanks for the reply, Willybite. The Toothills that I knew lived on Northcote Avenue which is near the top of Albert Road, so it could well have been the same bloke. Thanks again for the info.

Edited by fatrajah

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Guest

Sad to report the death of Brian Crookes aged 76 on Friday 1st July 2016. Brian was the Data Processing manager for many years and had also served on the Sports Club committee.

Edited by Guest

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My Dad Raymond Clarke worked for Laycocks making clutches. Anyone remember him ? I Too remember the great Christmas parties ! 

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My Farther Jack Forshaw worked at Laycocks for some 48 years both at Archer Road and Little London road on the overdrive  section I have worked at two or three engineering companies and his name always seemed to be known. 

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Mr Forshaw used to continually walk around the section he was in charge of so he got thr nickname "Sputnic" after the Russian satelite!

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