Reminiscence and Resource Centre

A quiet and conscientious worker - 1948
Conscientious and steady work, punctual and regular attendance - how often have these qualities been mentioned in this column alone? The reasons are simple, for they are some of the essential qualities needed to make a good Bataman or girl. Len Wigley, 27 year old sandal stitcher in Dept 431, is a Bataman with just those qualities and Foreman G Mu5rell and Floormanager J Greenwood pay high tribute to him as a valuable member of his department.
Coming to East Tilbury in 1937, Len started working Dept 425, first on sandals, then on slippers until in December of that year he was sent to Zlin on a four months’ course. In spite of language difficulties Len enjoyed his stay there, feeling at home in the comradeship of the Bata town.
On his return to England, he went into Dept 432 and was plate-stitching until he went into the Navy in 1940.Serving on a destroyer in the Mediterranean, Atlantic and Indian Oceans, Len had some exciting experiences - his worst perhaps when his destroyer was sunk just off Sicily and he and his shipmates had to be rescued from the sea. Other exciting experiences Len will not discuss, such as when he was a human guinea-pig with an experimental party.
Ashore again as a civilian, he came back to Dept 431 and enjoys his work stitching sandals.
Single, Len is not interested in getting married for the present. He lives with his parents in Tilbury and is an ardent follower of his town’s football team.
He is impatient for the return of basic petrol, as he is an enthusiastic motor cyclist. Although he does not do any speedway racing himself, he likes to go as a spectator whenever he can get a chance, and with the return of petrol that will once again be more easily possible.