Reminiscence and Resource Centre

Forewoman believes in guiding workers - 1948
Ability, hard work and conscientiousness in themselves, admirable qualities though they may be, are not the only qualifications needed to make a good forewoman. Forewoman Nora Spencer, of Dept 442, has all these qualities, but the real reason for her efficiency and her popularity with the girls of her department’s sewing section, is her personality, and the helpful way in which she guides her section. Nora started work at East Tilbury in 1935 in Dept 321, in the rubber factory, and worked there until she left the district in 1937. In September, 1939, a few days after the declaration of war, Nora felt it was her duty to help her country as best she could, and returned to Dept 321.
When the rubber factory closed in 1942, Nora had worked her way up and had been promoted to Forewoman. With several other girls she was transferred to the leather factory school, and after some six months, was appointed instructress in the sewing department.
She was soon moved to her present department and, first promoted to forewoman in 1943. In those days she was stitching uppers on reconditioned Army boots, but finds her present work of sandal stitching far more interesting and varied.
Most of the girls in her department have been with Nora since they left school at the age of 14. Four of them are planning to be married this summer, and as Nora herself is taking the plunge, her department will soon become on of married women.
Lucky man to marry Nora is tall Edgetrimmer Cyril Bone, who works in Dept 431, and is well known as the concert party’s pianist. Both Cyril and Nora went to school together, and are just waiting to get a house or other accommodation in Southend.
In the evenings, after work, Nora likes to go and see a good British film, or go dancing, and she rarely misses one of the Community House dances.
A striking personality, a quick wit, a broad sense of humour, all these are a part of her success as a forewoman.