Dell Savill only spent a short time at Job's in the late 1950's but considers it amongst his greatest memories...
Dell Savill at home in Tenerife - December 2008
I have lived with my wife, son and daughter in North Tenerife for the past 25 years running a family company, so it was great to discover the Job’s website.
On leaving Twickenham Technical College in 1956, I found it very difficult to work under a roof in any circumstance, and much to my mother's annoyance, decided to forfeit my chances of becoming an apprentice toolmaker and look for an open air job. Dad had worked as a roundsman for some years with Job’s at Parkfield Feltham and Sunbury branches. It wasn’t long before he convinced me to apply for a roundsmans job which landed me at the Hanworth Branch. I think I may still hold the record for the youngest milkman at 17 years for Job’s at least. My round took in Sunningdale Avenue, Saxon Avenue, Little Park Drive and a stretch of the Hanworth Road. As my round was the smallest at Hanworth, I had to deliver the school 1/3rds to Orial School before loading up to commence my round.
My older brother Ron also drove a little Karrier flat back lorry for some years. I can’t
remember exactly what his particular job was, all I knew is that it was the only vehicle of its type working out of the plant.
Another of my brothers, Norman was manager at one of the Reading Branches, Woodley, I believe and later at Walton. On retirement from Walton he was chauffer and general assistant to H.A. Roberts at Cobham. I am sure that many roundsmen will remember him.
My younger Brother Ray also worked as a driver at the plant but much later, when forklifts and tailboards replaced the ramp, and luxury tugs, i.e. ERF´s, were the order of the day. How the job changed from the Good Old Days.
Anyway, back to my own memorable experiences with Job’s. I had been on the round at Hanworth for about a year, when I heard that we were about to get a new manager. Unfortunately it turned out to be my own Brother in Law who had finished serving his time as a Chief Petty Officer. We never did see eye to eye and one morning when I had short delivered one crate of 1/3rds to Orial School, he demanded that I should take the crate out to the school before starting my round, even though the yard van was standing idle. I did no more than to put my walkie on charge and bike home.
When Dad came in that afternoon he had already heard what had happened and was not at all happy, and some how so had Ted Knight who wanted to see me at his office at the plant the next morning. I could not understand why or for what reason he wanted to see me knowing that I had walked out.
It was that meeting with Mr. Knight that made me realise just how considerate the Job`s family were to their staff. He sympathised with me for what had happened and offered me a job as a lorry drivers mate. I was chuffed with the opportunity which was the start of one of the most enjoyable periods in my young life for I was still only 18 years old.
Working with the toughest and nicest bunch of guys one could wish to work with, every day was enjoyable although in those days it was up and down ramps and hook and chuck co-ordination between driver and mate.
I worked with the likes of George Hampton, Johnny Saunders, Ginger Pierce and Jim Pierce, Johnny Childs, Mickey Mitchell and of course the Job’s Icon in our day was Allan Hillier. Built like the proverbial, he was the perfect gentleman and I was fortunate to become his workmate. He was incredibly strong and on one occasion when we arrived at the Twickenham Branch we realised that we had left a ramp back at the plant. It was to replace a broken one which we had taken back the day before. I suggested that we should go back and get it. Allan would hear nothing of it, our lorry for that run was a Vulcan rigid which took around 53 stacks. “Break em down” he said “take the top crate off and I will lift the four crates down on to the 5th before hooking the stacks into the cold store”. On another occasion when the plant loading bay conveyor belt had broken down, to fill in the time certain drivers would compete by carrying as many full crates around the entire peripheral of the tug and trailer whilst parked on the bay, and place them back on the bank. I remember that the competitions regular winner by far would be Allan or Wally Lowe who was another really popular guy who received a lot of admiration and respect from all of us.
I took my driving tests for car and motorbike all within a month , with Ted Woodfield who was a certified RAC Tester. He followed me in his car down to the Brown Bear Pub and back to the plant. I followed him into his office and he immediately began writing out the pink slip. I asked why he had not asked me any Highway Code questions. He replied “didn’t I pass you out in a car a month ago?" “Yes” I replied. “Well then, I hope you haven’t forgotten it already” was his reply.
Although my time spent at Job’s was relatively short compared to other long serving staff, I still consider that time with Job’s amongst my greatest memories.
I am hoping that I can get back for the reunion in the UK next year (2009) and hopefully meet up with some of the old characters after all these years.
Cheers for now.
Kendel Developments S.L.
Calle Achaman, 16
38430 Icod de los Vinos
Santa Cruz de Tenerife
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