Wayne Roberts

Memories of the Pipe Shop and its workers, 1966-1972

When I started working in the Pipe Shop in 1966, access to the Pipe Drawing Office could be gained through a door at the side of Ray Chamberlain’s office. I can’t remember any of the draughtsmen’s names, but I do remember the first time that I looked at a pipe drawing and thought to myself:

I will never be able to understand what that piece of paper is trying to tell me.

It looked so complex; just a mass of blue lines going in every direction, but with a drawing number and the name of the man or woman who drew it at the bottom. They were in reality works of art which needed to be studied and deciphered.

The following are some names of the men who worked in the Pipe Shop between 1966 and 1972 (this list may not be complete or accurate):

Ray Chamberlain, Ken Juggins, Les George, Reg Gregory, Arthur Lodge, Len Gapp, Arthur Rigby, Mick Price, Cyril Crowther, Sid Hatch.

Pipe Shop Apprentices: Geoff Wood, Keith Hale, Ian Anderson, Jim Mercer, Chris Gwilliam, Wayne Roberts.

Comments about this page

  • I remember the names that Wayne has listed. The only addition I can think of is Terry Cooper.
    I started as an apprentice in 1960. After the craft school, light machine shop and both fitting shops I went to the drawing office in the piping section in an office in Baker St. in front of the pipe shop. This was in about 1964.
    Here are the names of the people I remember working with in the piping section:-
    Colin Lee, Ray Hecquet, Joe Blackford, Keith Elliot, Chris Ashbee, Bob Mumford, Steve Lloyd, Terry Cooper and Duncan Clark.
    I was made redundant FOUR times. The last major piping drawings I did were in 1982 for the 4500 ton plate stretcher for Taiwan.

    By Chris Farley (02/07/2020)
  • Thanks for adding this page, Wayne, it’s a real gem! It’s interesting to hear the Pipe Shop had its own Drawing Office? Was Ray Chamberlain one of the draughtsmen or the foreman? We haven’t had an account of what the day-to-day work in the Pipe Shop was like, so if you remember anything more of your time there then please feel free to add further pages. If you have a photo of yourself (either working in the 60s and 70s or present day) then please feel free to add that to your pages too! I wonder if anyone else on the site remembers any of the people you mention – and if so what they remember of them?

    By Ollie Taylor (28/01/2013)

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