Reminiscence and Resource Centre

On the first British Bata payroll. - 1948
One of the first two employees to be engaged by the Company for work at East Tilbury, Alf Mansfield, of the salvage department, died in Oldchurch Hospital, on Thursday, at the age of 55 years.

Mansfield, who lived at Dowsett Cottages, EAst Tilbury, was a well known figure in the factory, with a ready smile, an outspoken manner and without an enemy.

For many years he was an employee at one of the large oil storage installations but was among those stood off because of the great pre-war industrial depression. Then he became an agricultural worker for a while until in May, 1933, he started work assisting to get things ready for the opening of the first British Bata factory building at East Tilbury in August, the same year.

Although he had no family Mansfield showed a keen interest in children and was always ready to subscribe to any cause which had as its object the provision of entertainment or welfare facilities for the young.

Only a week or so before his death the workers of his department made a collection for Mansfield, and his wife wrote them to say he was unable to reply himself at that time but would write as soon as he was able. A day or so later he was removed to hospital.

The funeral took place at Grays this afternoon.