David belongs to: The Doxford Engine Friends Association
David was born in Sunderland. He served his apprenticeship at North East Marine shipyards as a fitter. After working at sea David became an Assistant Manager at Doxford's ship yard overseeing the installation and testing of Doxford engines.
David was interviewed by Carl Greenwood on 8 November 2005. The interview took place at the Interviewee's living room and lasted 1 hour, 36 minutes and 40 seconds.
"This was one of the things where British shipbuilding went down the drain"
This was one of the things where British shipbuilding went down the drain, there weren’t enough college trained people in the industry. There were only two people at Doxford’s who had a degree I was one of them and I was the fitting out manager, and quite frankly you didn’t need a degree in engineering to be a fitting out manager, it was, you were running the men, and this sort of thing- I wasn’t designing anything. And the other was Percy Jackson who was the man designing the engine, he was a very clever man.
And after doing the fitting out manager for whatever the number of years was, 1964, I came to the, I think, I’m not being arrogant, I think I was a good fitting out manager, I don’t think I could- there wasn’t a lot of room for improvement and I got the feeling that if I didn’t do something about it I’d be the fitting out manager for the rest of my days. And I liked doing my work but I didn’t want to be doing it forever, I wanted to something different, so I applied for a job as a research engineer with British and Commonwealth, what became Union Castle, you know and when, so I was, I went after this job.
And I got the job and when I went to hand in my notice to the managing director, a man called Abel, he said, “don’t you worry about that,” he said. “We’ll keep you here. We’ll send you up to the design office and you can work with Mr. Jackson in the design office.” And I told him, I said, “you’re too late,” I said, “you could have done that, you could have done that and maybe this would have never have happened,” and I said, “but as far as I can see you’re going to, you were quite happy for me to go on putting engines in ships until I’m 65,” and I said, “don’t you try..” and he said, “Oh, I’ll phone them up in London and tell them you’re not coming.” And I said, “don’t you dare do that,” I said, “I have agreed, I’m going.” So I went.
David has 17 memories in the memorynet:
David's memories with a Training theme:
- Apprenticeship at North East Marine
- Going to sea
- Engineer's Certificate
- North East Marine Guide for Apprentices
David's other memories:
- Father’s time at sea
- Swimming in ballast tanks on the tankers
- Safety and dangers at sea
- Returning to the North East and Doxford's
- Role at Doxford’s
- Industrial action at Doxford's
- Going on sea trials
- Accident on sea trials
- Leaving Doxford’s
- Workers at Doxford's
- Continuous Certificate of Discharge
- Swimming pool
- Sea Trials