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Old 24-08-2018, 12:31   #1
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Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Hello everyone,


My name is Mike, I was born in Rawtenstall and lived in Woodside Road, Accrington during my childhood. I have a query about where my late mother worked during the war.
My mother would often tell me about working at a factory that made Wellington Bombers at a local factory that was converted for the work. She told me that the factory was called Howard & Butlers but I cannot find any information on either that factory or Wellington Bomber production in Accrington. Can anyone please help me to progress this query?


Best Wishes


Mike
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Old 28-08-2018, 08:39   #2
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

It was Howard and Bulloughs mate not Butlers, aint sure about the spelling but definately that was it.
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Old 28-08-2018, 09:07   #3
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

http://www.accringtonweb.com/forum/f...ugh-17881.html (Howard & Bullough) theres a thread on it here.
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Old 28-08-2018, 11:48   #4
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Hi Nohras Lad,

Howard & Bulloughs is the correct name. My Grandfather worked there from approx. 1910 until approx. 1950. He was the supervisor in the moulding shop. His name was Albert (Dick) Swain.
I do know that during the war years they produced Aircraft Parts for various aircraft manufacturers, but never whole aircrafts.
What I can tell you about the Wellington Bomber is as follows:
It was designed and produced by Vickers Aircraft Company, but with the event of the second world war coming, more and more aircraft were demanded. This meant that other factories (so called Shadow Factories) such as, Gloster Aircraft Co. and Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft, were also producing the aircraft. See link below for more information.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vickers_Wellington

A small anecdote:
I served my apprenticeship at the English Electric in Clayton-le-Moors from 1958 until 1963. At the beginning we were still producing the Canberra Bomber, later the Lightning and at the end the prototype(s) of the TSR (another sad story).
My departmental head in the Spar Milling dept. was Bill Leeming, who told me that during the war so and so many parts and aircraft were being produced per day (or week not sure now) which to me was a fantastic amount. I've forgotten which type of aircraft he meant, but with the information above on "Shadow Factories" it could well have been Wellingtons.
Not forgetting that there were "Work Buses" bringing employees to and from the Factory from all over the area.

Cheers
Philip Kenyon
Late Belfield Road
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Old 28-08-2018, 12:10   #5
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Thanks Cashman and Philip. The information about the bus service is interesting as I had wondered how people got to these factories, not all could have afforded the daily commute.
Cheers

Mike
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Old 28-08-2018, 16:37   #6
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vickers_Wellington

If you want to see a Wellington being constructed have a hunt around for the film referred to in the link. I have not checked but its almost certainly available on YouTube or the BFI site.

RE Shadow Factories: In general there were two types those that produced components i.e. hoses, tyres, instruments etc. and those that produced sub-assemblies i.e. wings, fuselarge sections etc. It was organised as a sort of pyramid with the components being made in literally hundreds of (often small) workshops. Sub-assemblies in larger works with final assembly in airfields such as (in the case of Wellingtons) Broughton Nr. Chester.
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Old 28-08-2018, 17:19   #7
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Quote:
Originally Posted by landhusweg View Post
....
A small anecdote:
I served my apprenticeship at the English Electric in Clayton-le-Moors from 1958 until 1963. At the beginning we were still producing the Canberra Bomber, later the Lightning and at the end the prototype(s) of the TSR (another sad story).....
You got me reading about the TSR-2, ironic that a Labour government cancelled it causing much redundancy, caused many skilled design engineers to move to America and put the UK years behind the USA in aircraft development

TSR-2: The Plane That Barely Flew
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Old 28-08-2018, 19:27   #8
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Norahs Lad View Post
Thanks Cashman and Philip. The information about the bus service is interesting as I had wondered how people got to these factories, not all could have afforded the daily commute.
Cheers

Mike
I did about a month driving buses for Accrington Council. A job I hated and soon left.
That was around 1966 and the English Electric factory at Clayton le moors which made parts for planes still had a small bus park by the left of the main gates. Just before shifts finished there would be a lot of buses waiting to take the workers to different destinations around the Borough.
I don't know what they made then though.
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Old 29-08-2018, 07:57   #9
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

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Originally Posted by Neil View Post
You got me reading about the TSR-2, ironic that a Labour government cancelled it causing much redundancy, caused many skilled design engineers to move to America and put the UK years behind the USA in aircraft development

TSR-2: The Plane That Barely Flew
I know we’re getting off the original request from Norahs Lad, but the fact that the Labour government scrapped the TSR2 needs to be enlightened on:

Just a couple of months before the then general election, labour party officials were standing outside the entrance gates and handing out leaflets which where it stated very clearly "That if a labour government were to be elected, then the TSR2 would NOT be scrapped"

Incidentally a very good link.

Cheers
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Old 29-08-2018, 09:25   #10
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Many many years ago, my paternal Grandfather worked at what was later the English Electric site, but it is interesting to note the he told me that the company he worked for was called The Bristol Aircraft Company.
I cannot tell you if this was before WWII...or whether it was during the war years.
He always referred to the place as 'Bristol Aircraft' even after it became English Electric.
That is the only light I can throw onto this subject....I cannot tell you if the manufactured the whole aircraft...or whether it was just parts.
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Old 30-08-2018, 14:46   #11
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Hi Margaret,
The factory being "Bristol Aircraft" before English Electric seeme very logical, see text below taken from Wikipedia:

"In 1959, Bristol was forced by Government policy to merge its aircraft interests with English Electric, Hunting Aircraft, and Vickers-Armstrongs to form the British Aircraft Corporation (BAC). Bristol formed a holding company which held a 20 per cent share of BAC, while English Electric and Vickers held 40 per cent each."

Cheers
Philip Kenyon
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Old 30-08-2018, 15:03   #12
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Thank you for that Philip...I was beginning to wonder if I had dreamed it.
No-one I know can remember it being that.
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Old 30-08-2018, 15:49   #13
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

My mother often used to call it the Bristol rather than the English Electric.
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Old 30-08-2018, 20:56   #14
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Margaret Pilkington View Post
Thank you for that Philip...I was beginning to wonder if I had dreamed it.
No-one I know can remember it being that.
I dont recall it at all, but i can honestly recall being told about it many years back.
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Old 30-08-2018, 21:06   #15
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Re: Wellington Bomber production in Accrington?

My Grandad never called that site English Electric...even when it was English Electric.
My husband worked at English Electric....later known as GEC....he says that he can't remember it being Bristol, but he does remember being shown a shed and told that they used to make wings in there for fighter planes.
He thought someone was yanking his chain...but it looks like it was true after all.
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