Saturday, May 03, 2008

Print workers march through Frome

The top two postings on this blog through popularity of hits are the two pieces I did on Butler and Tanner and the shock closure of this profitable and state of the art colour printers. And they're not all hits from Frome by any means. That's the strength of feeling out there. I was immensely proud of the procession through town and I felt privileged to be able to cheer them on. Why? B&Ts was always more than just a factory - it was an institution - a source of great stories, remarkable characters and a whole world contained within those walls. It used to be an old fashioned paternalistic company with Joe Tanner taking an interest in his employees, who in turn organised social activities for the families - no wonder generations worked side by side as I did with my Dad and Uncle Arthur - it was a family firm. Now it is a victim of the 'shut it down and send the work overseas' mentality that has gripped Britain. Let's hope there's still hope for Frome. BBC coverage here