Johnsons the Cleaners . .

Post your photo's and video memories about Bootle here...
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davybaby
Posts: 353
Joined: Sun Apr 11, 2010 8:48 am
Location: Southport.

Ebay Item.
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PeterR
Posts: 233
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2010 1:16 pm
Location: Evandale Tasmania

[quote="davybaby"]Ebay Item.
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quote]
Very interesting picture (The 2nd one down)I worked there in 1949-1951,This department had been bombed in the war and and when I was there it was the "Recieving Dept", note along the back wall all the machinary belt drives -the brackets - they were still there but I didnt know why as I was only a kid and didnt take note of these things -THAT back wall is along Hornby Boulevade.
Peterr
Born in Spenser Street
jddry
Posts: 370
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:48 pm
Location: bootle most of my life

great photos any idea how many people worked there?
PeterR
Posts: 233
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2010 1:16 pm
Location: Evandale Tasmania

[quote="jddry"]great photos any idea how many people worked there?[
/quote]

There are other pictures on this site about Johnsons, it was a big concern and in its heyday I would guess there would have been 1500 to 2000 people working there. as mentioned they also had 600 branches with a manageress.
in 1951 an adult man was getting 4pounds 19 shillings an adult Woman was getting 4 pounds for a48 hr week as a boy I got 2 pounds 4 shillings, I was there when the woring week was reduced to 44 hours, some departments offered bonus for increased effort.
While they did require their pound of flesh -they were a good company to work for and many people worked there for all their working lives.
Employees welfare was important to them they had an active social and sports club and after a qualifying period of employment -You could become a shareholder--that also bought YOUR loyalty.
The factory was self sufficiant in that they had their own power plant and coal was brought from Wigan colliery twice a day in their own "Sentinal" steam lorry ,there were 7 big vans which on night shift went out all around Lancashire and Cheshire collecting and delivering from the shops .
Peter
Born in Spenser Street
jddry
Posts: 370
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2009 4:48 pm
Location: bootle most of my life

hi peter what number spenser street did you live were at 19 spenser since 1982
bob. b
Posts: 5799
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 1:04 pm

All that is left nice building

Image
PeterR
Posts: 233
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2010 1:16 pm
Location: Evandale Tasmania

Bob. B
Thanks for sending that picture, very hard to imagine that many Years ago this building was a hive of activity and on any working day their will have been anything like 600 Girls- Women and Men working in there, the ground floor was mostly the canteen and catering department and as I have said in earlier posts this company looked after its employees, the first person I worked with as a kid had been there for 45 years .
Over the road at the social club they tried to show me the gentle art of lawn bowls --it wasnt for me -My first bowl ended up in the bushes over by the church and took us 5 minutes to find.
Peterr
Born in Spenser Street
bob. b
Posts: 5799
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 1:04 pm

Peter seems most of the good firms have left us and all the skills that went with them firms are going . All them girls :? :? bet you were never late for canteen breaks :? :lol:
bob. b
Posts: 5799
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 1:04 pm

Peter found this today may be of interest. Regards bob

Contributed by Bournemouth LibrariesPeople in story: Douglas CarruthersLocation of story: Bootle, LiverpoolBackground to story: CivilianArticle ID: A3957573Contributed on: 27 April 2005

My parents married in 1936 and I was the first child and I remained the only child until 1946 when my brother was born. We lived in a terraced house in an area of such houses in Bootle, a county borough on the northern boundary of Liverpool. About one mile from our house are two of the largest docks that are on the shores of the River Mersey. They are Canada Dock and Gladstone Dock.

When war broke out in 1939 I can remember my father putting sticky tape in a criss-cross pattern on the windows. My mother took me to the council office, where I was issued with my “Mickey Mouse” gas mask. In 1940 my father was called up for service in the RAF. Later he was sent to India and I did not see him until 1945. My mother looked after me and would not let me be evacuated, as other children were. She said “If we were going to be killed we would be together”. She was a good manager and despite the rationing and shortages I was always well fed and clothed and kept warm.

Towards the end of 1940 the Germans began serious raids on the Liverpool/Bottle docks, because of the cargo links with North America/Canada/West Africa. Bootle suffered serious bombing. At first, when the sirens sounded, we ran to huge communal shelters which had been built in the local park. Later we had our own brick and concrete shelter in the back yard. Some people, who had infants or elderly people living with them or who had no room in the yard, had an iron table installed in the kitchen (sitting room). Underneath was surrounded by wire mesh to protect the occupants should the house fall on them. I knew people who always slept there.

My mother, like everyone else, had to do “war work” and she worked in “Johnsons Dyers and Cleaners” factory, which was in the next street. When she was at work, her mother, my “nan” looked after me. Her husband, my “step grandfather” was my Uncle Jack, a marvellous gentleman, who was about 60 years of age plus. I can tell many stories about him and his kindness to me.

I began school early aged 4 years, so that I would be looked after in the daytime. We had canvas cot beds and on sunny afternoons we would take them into the schoolyard for the whole class to have a nap. This was for two reasons (a) to rest because our nights were disturbed by the air raids and (b) to boost our vitamin intake from the sunshine.

Severe bombing of the area took place in 1941 especially the well-documented “May Blitz”. I remember being taken to school but a house had been blown up opposite the main gate, which was blocked, as the street was full of rubble. We were all sent home until it was cleared and the area made safe.

I can remember:-

(A) The “blackout” = the black curtain and no street lights.

(B) Each street had an “A.R.P.” (Air Raid Precaution), ours was Mr Wildman. He enforced regulations and kept a nominal list to assist rescue.

(C) Rationing of food and clothing and, of course, sweets.

(D) The bombing — houses near to us were bombed as well as two local factories.

(E) My Uncle Jack lost his job when his factory was destroyed (Bryant and May Matchmakers). He then worked for the council painting the letters E.W.S. on the tanks (Emergency Water Supply).

(F) I can remember the above tanks being “in situ” years after the war.

(G) My Uncle Jack made toys for me out of waste and scrap.

(H) People bartered — my mother always had a store of sugar, thanks to a gypsy’s blessing.

(I) In the local park and about 400 yards from my house was a barrage balloon station run by female soldiers.

(J) Later on, I was issued with my adult gas mask in the familiar cardboard box fitted with string, so you carried it with you (when the danger was past we used it as a lunch box).

(K) The council removed all the iron railings from houses and parks for the “war effort”.

(L) The shore (beach) was covered in concrete tank traps.
PeterR
Posts: 233
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2010 1:16 pm
Location: Evandale Tasmania

bob. b wrote:Peter found this today may be of interest. Regards bob

Contributed by Bournemouth LibrariesPeople in story: Douglas CarruthersLocation of story: Bootle, LiverpoolBackground to story: CivilianArticle ID: A3957573Contributed on: 27 April 2005

My parents married in 1936 and I was the first child and I remained the only child until 1946 when my brother was born. We lived in a terraced house in an area of such houses in Bootle, a county borough on the northern boundary of Liverpool. About one mile from our house are two of the largest docks that are on the shores of the River Mersey. They are Canada Dock and Gladstone Dock.

When war broke out in 1939 I can remember my father putting sticky tape in a criss-cross pattern on the windows. My mother took me to the council office, where I was issued with my “Mickey Mouse” gas mask. In 1940 my father was called up for service in the RAF. Later he was sent to India and I did not see him until 1945. My mother looked after me and would not let me be evacuated, as other children were. She said “If we were going to be killed we would be together”. She was a good manager and despite the rationing and shortages I was always well fed and clothed and kept warm.

Towards the end of 1940 the Germans began serious raids on the Liverpool/Bottle docks, because of the cargo links with North America/Canada/West Africa. Bootle suffered serious bombing. At first, when the sirens sounded, we ran to huge communal shelters which had been built in the local park. Later we had our own brick and concrete shelter in the back yard. Some people, who had infants or elderly people living with them or who had no room in the yard, had an iron table installed in the kitchen (sitting room). Underneath was surrounded by wire mesh to protect the occupants should the house fall on them. I knew people who always slept there.

My mother, like everyone else, had to do “war work” and she worked in “Johnsons Dyers and Cleaners” factory, which was in the next street. When she was at work, her mother, my “nan” looked after me. Her husband, my “step grandfather” was my Uncle Jack, a marvellous gentleman, who was about 60 years of age plus. I can tell many stories about him and his kindness to me.

I began school early aged 4 years, so that I would be looked after in the daytime. We had canvas cot beds and on sunny afternoons we would take them into the schoolyard for the whole class to have a nap. This was for two reasons (a) to rest because our nights were disturbed by the air raids and (b) to boost our vitamin intake from the sunshine.

Severe bombing of the area took place in 1941 especially the well-documented “May Blitz”. I remember being taken to school but a house had been blown up opposite the main gate, which was blocked, as the street was full of rubble. We were all sent home until it was cleared and the area made safe.

I can remember:-

(A) The “blackout” = the black curtain and no street lights.

(B) Each street had an “A.R.P.” (Air Raid Precaution), ours was Mr Wildman. He enforced regulations and kept a nominal list to assist rescue.

(C) Rationing of food and clothing and, of course, sweets.

(D) The bombing — houses near to us were bombed as well as two local factories.

(E) My Uncle Jack lost his job when his factory was destroyed (Bryant and May Matchmakers). He then worked for the council painting the letters E.W.S. on the tanks (Emergency Water Supply).

(F) I can remember the above tanks being “in situ” years after the war.

(G) My Uncle Jack made toys for me out of waste and scrap.

(H) People bartered — my mother always had a store of sugar, thanks to a gypsy’s blessing.

(I) In the local park and about 400 yards from my house was a barrage balloon station run by female soldiers.

(J) Later on, I was issued with my adult gas mask in the familiar cardboard box fitted with string, so you carried it with you (when the danger was past we used it as a lunch box).

(K) The council removed all the iron railings from houses and parks for the “war effort”.

(L) The shore (beach) was covered in concrete tank traps.
Hello BOB,
sorry a bit late back with reply to Your very interesting description of war experiences in Bootle .
And while this is a bit "Off topic" about Johnsons dye works I am sure our readers wont mind "US" telling about what went on in those days -Most of the things You mention I can recall myself ,and as I am older than you being launched in 1934-All the children in Bootle schools were evacuated -all over the place -mainly Southport-as we were and at 5 years of age I had never been out of my mams sight and suddenly we were in Southport-as were lots of other kids from Bootle--I always maintain that the war to Southport was the kids from Bootle, We had great fun pinching rowing boats on the Marine Lake abandoning them over the others side of the lake-climbing up the big dipper in Pleasurland-there was no "Big dipper" in Bootle! - we went fishing off the end of the pier and when the fishermen came in on carts from being out across the sands to their nets we would try to cadge fish off them to take to our billet .
Having caught diptheria and being taken to Southport Infirmary ,I heard my first real bad swear words when fellows carrying me on a stretcher fell over in the blackout and nearly tipped me out.
Just before the war My Uncle Billy took me down to Gladtone Dock gate to see HMS HOOD- in dry dock -then a few weeks later to see Mauretania there .--I could go on and on !!!
I am glad I was only a child during the war that I didnt know the seriousness of what was going on--ALL Our parents had a tough time of it in those days --God Bless them all .
PeterR
Born in Spenser Street
Patricia
Posts: 5517
Joined: Sun Aug 30, 2009 10:00 pm
Location: Virginia

I had an Aunt that worked at Johnson's as a Furrier. She had the most beautiful mink coat and matching hat! :) Have no idea what became of them!!!
It takes both rain & sunshine to make a rainbow
henry
Posts: 2934
Joined: Tue Mar 21, 2006 6:45 pm

bob. b wrote:All that is left nice building

Image
jJohnsons are Getting modernised and work starts next week on the gable end next to Linacre road with shops getting built with appartments above them
HENRY BORN FLORIDA STREET OFF STRAND ROAD
bob. b
Posts: 5799
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 1:04 pm

Great stuff still keeping the building not like the sixties. get rid of all are history buildings[/img]
PeterR
Posts: 233
Joined: Tue Apr 27, 2010 1:16 pm
Location: Evandale Tasmania

Patricia wrote:I had an Aunt that worked at Johnson's as a Furrier. She had the most beautiful mink coat and matching hat! :) Have no idea what became of them!!!
She probably sold them at a Fair :lol:
Born in Spenser Street
CeliaStgirl
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2021 12:42 pm

PeterR wrote: Sun May 26, 2013 1:14 pm Bob. B
Thanks for sending that picture, very hard to imagine that many Years ago this building was a hive of activity and on any working day their will have been anything like 600 Girls- Women and Men working in there, the ground floor was mostly the canteen and catering department and as I have said in earlier posts this company looked after its employees, the first person I worked with as a kid had been there for 45 years .
Over the road at the social club they tried to show me the gentle art of lawn bowls --it wasnt for me -My first bowl ended up in the bushes over by the church and took us 5 minutes to find.
Peterr
CeliaStgirl
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2021 12:42 pm

PeterR wrote: Sun May 26, 2013 1:14 pm Bob. B
Thanks for sending that picture, very hard to imagine that many Years ago this building was a hive of activity and on any working day their will have been anything like 600 Girls- Women and Men working in there, the ground floor was mostly the canteen and catering department and as I have said in earlier posts this company looked after its employees, the first person I worked with as a kid had been there for 45 years .
Over the road at the social club they tried to show me the gentle art of lawn bowls --it wasnt for me -My first bowl ended up in the bushes over by the church and took us 5 minutes to find.
Peterr
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