- 8 Aug 2002 (Creation)
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Subjects covered include: First World War, Industry, Second World War, Women's History and Working Life. Places mentioned include Yarmouth, Norwich and Leek.
00:00-05:00 - Gordon Berry (hereafter GB) describes his job role for Grouts while evacuated in Leek. He mentions other firms, including the GQ Parachute company, Littlewoods, Irving Air Chutes and Pack Parachute. He describes the effect of Japan joining the war on silk supply and the appearance of nylon.
05:01-10:00 - GB describes the difficulties of transitioning to nylon for parachute manufacture and the production process. He mentions complaining to the director about using nylon, mentioning the Spirella corset company.
10:01-15:00 - GB describes inspecting the fabric. The interviewer asks about MB's working week during the war, and GB describes his work at Leek, mentioning where Grout's parachute fabric was sent. He mentions the accommodation for mill employees in Cheddleton. The interviewer suggests a break.
15:01-20:00 - The interviewer asks GB to carry on. GB starts listing the clients Grouts supplied, mentioning Palgrave Brown, Princess Alexandra and Charles Richard Hammond of Barclays Bank. He explains that the company no longer exists, mentioning Johnson and Johnson, Smith and Nephew and the changes to the company closing in 1996.
20:01-25:00 - GB explains why the mill was opened in Yarmouth, mentioning a government enquiry in 1832 at which Joseph Grout gave evidence, encouraging child labour. He describes the partnership with the Hall family, describing the location of their house in Yarmouth and mentioning their disagreements on the ideal age for child labourers. GB and the interviewer discuss child labour.
25:01-30:00 - GB describes the Grout brothers' family, mentioning their descendents, their living in Norwich and Yarmouth, the mill in Magdalen Street and their children, including Joseph's illegitimate son Francis Williams.
30:01-35:00 - GB continues describing the Grout brothers' family, mentioning the wedding of George's daughter into the Springfield family. He mentions a letter from a student enquiring about Grouts, and his refusal. He describes how he obtained a picture.
35:01-40:00 - GB and the Interviewer discuss who the picture would be of interest to. They discuss some papers. GB talks about the closure of Grouts in 1996, mentioning his invite to take any historical documents and listing what people took, mentioning Paul Rutledge.
40:01-45:00 - GB continues describing who took what when the company closed. The interviewer thanks GB. They discuss the importance of recording the history of Grouts. GB explains how important the company was to Yarmouth, mentioning women's employment. He reminisces about his experiences at Grouts. He begins to tell an anecdote about the carpentry shop at the mill.
45:01-50:00 - GB continues telling an anecdote about George Turrell and his father delivering coffins to the workhouse, and the origin of a phrase his father would say. He mentions his father's carpentry and like of coffins, recalling attending funerals with his father as a child and begins an anecdote about a coffin his father made for John Balls' sister.
50:01-55:00 - GB continues telling an anecdote about the last coffin his father made, and how the dead body scared his father's friend. He mentions his father making aeroplane propellers in Norwich during the First World War, and describes the process.
55:01-end - The interviewer thanks GB, and they discuss related paperwork. GB mentions postcards from prisoners of war thanking Grouts for their bandages.