Robert Horne

1999/142 Robert S Horne interviewed by Dr Heather Holmes at his home in Edinburgh on 15 September 1999.

000 Started at Nelsons Christmas Day 1926. Holidays 2 days at New Year, a week in July and a day in April and September.
030 Went to Nelsons from Preston Street School. Most people that worked in Nelsons lived in the Southside.
045 Nelsons had playing fields. Could play tennis, football, hockey and had a putting green. Took workers on day out free of charge. Weekend home for girls at Pomethorn.
085 Rest room for girls, welfare lady to look after them. Cafeteria opposite Nelsons where workers could get lunch. Nelson library.
127 Hall opposite Nelsons held dramatic club and dances. During war years money given to soldier's wives and mothers.
180 Played football for Nelsons. Kit paid for by Nelsons. Yellow and blue vertical stripes. Team in Lothian amateur league.
194 Two teams at Nelsons. Full size pitch. Tennis courts, golf and bowling. Nelson stayed at the foot of Park Road. Thomson sold the playing fields. Ian Nelson was a gentleman, knew all the workers.
248 Ronnie not interested in business, interested in trains, not managerial, sold business.
281 Heard about the closure on television and then at work later. Lot of work for Nelsons from South Africa and New Zealand.
298 Thomson started to put work out to the continent as cheaper.
303 Nelsons moving from Letterpress to Litho. Editorial staff moving south. Thomson sold land for Pollock Halls and Commonwealth Pool.
337 Royal visit. Queen, two princesses and John Buchan. Asked Queen what book she wanted and did not have in stock so had to go to bookshop
373 Christmas parties in the hall opposite every year and dances at assembly rooms.
397 Dances at the hall were subsidised. Nelsons subsidised everything.
410 Tea trolley came at 10 o'clock and 4 o' clock, brought to your machine, free. Girls let out of work five minutes before the men. When overtime worked Nelsons provided a bus for workers.
428 Overtime on Tuesday and Thursday nights. Saturday was only for emergency work as was paid at treble time.
436 1926 strike did not affect Nelsons much.
446 Was in service during war. Wife continued to work at Nelsons and worked at firewatching with Ronnie Nelson.
469 Job was kept open during the war. 1930s depression did not affect Nelsons, still had a lot of schoolwork and bibles.

501 If there was a rush job would contract out to Morrison and Gibb and R and R Clark. Only sent out ordinary work, not school work or bibles

544 Bring prints of books home

596 Wait 3 years to start printing apprenticeship. Liked printing department when laboured there.

634 Printing department best wage.

659 Evening classes and printing exams

687 Start work on small jobs. Third year running own machine. Wife worked as a feeder, both lost tips of fingers.

760 Willie Allison lost his fingers in the cutting machine.

830 Nelsons played Health and Safety by the book.

846 Strike of 1959, played golf during strike. Union paid you during strike.

879 Managing Director letter from British Print Corporation thanking for loyal service. Maxwell loss of pension.

910 Letter of redundancy from Morrison and Gibb as refused to move factory. Nelson factory taken down and possibly rebuilt in America, bricks were numbered for this purpose.


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