11 thoughts on “ICI Apprentice Intake, 1970

  1. Some names Rob Richardson, John Harrison, Kev Eels, Jeff Edmonds, Rod Blackburn, Terry Simpson, Kev Dawson I must be there but struggling to identify myself.


  2. Does anyone know if a picture exists of the 1967 intake – that’s when I started. Al Hart is in the picture – I did the silver and gold discoverer course at Ingleby Greenhow camp


  3. I appreciate your positive comments on Stockton Frank but what is being done to stop all this negative nonsense being portrayed in the TV media, I am referring to this TV Show that portrays a typical street in Stockton ie “Benefit Street” I think it is called. Southerners just love to see this sort of rubbish about the North East. No one seems to make the effort to stop this propaganda from the media. You wonder why top Footballers do not want to play for the Boro, after seeing such a portrayal on the TV screens. I remember when I lived in Hartburn in the early sixties my next door neighbour brought his mother up from London and she was amazed that we had fields with Cows in them and lovely countryside all around us, as she had always thought of the North East as a desolate area with only mines and heavy industry every where, and all the houses like those in Coronation Street. Keep up he good work Frank, if there were more like you Stockton might benefit….


    • Ben it is the old adage, to the red top dailies the only good news is bad news. If they cannot run something down then listen in to other peoples phones or use extra long ranges lens on the camera or make it up.
      The programme Benefits Street rebounded on them when they found caring people who helped each other no matter how much the Government cut their benefits. It brought donations for the lady who looked after her disabled son and those who helped her. Yes you will get the odd person making a fool of them selves as soon as a camera is switched on it happens in the best of area’s.
      Those people are often in that position through no fault of their own, Government cuts as usual hit those with the least, you will get a benefits street is every town in the Country.
      Stockton is quite a busy place with the College’s bringing students from round the world, you can sit in the newly refurbished area’s of the town and hear many languages spoken. Feet are being encouraged into town with new initiatives and small businesses are coming in. Yes it is changing but then it always did, I saw new buildings come and then go, old heavy industry closed down and new Hi Tech industries came in it is progress we can never stand still.
      At ICI we would get batches of graduate engineers for 18 months, they came kicking and screaming having heard the horror stories of the area, 18 months later we sent them back South again kicking and screaming not wanting to go, many did come back, I think that speaks for itself.


  4. What happens to all the apprentices that local industry used to take on when Stockton was a thriving industrial centre with Companies like Ashmores, Head Wrightsons, Malleable Iron and Steel Company ICI and many smaller Engineering Firms who are now no more, thanks to Maggie Thatchers butchering of all Companies in the North East including Mining of things North of Reading…


    • Ben, those who had gone on to High School and became apprentices, (the examination to get a place was very tough) now go into high tech industries, a lot move away and many Teessider’s still work abroad. I feel sorry for the lads and lasses who never made it to high school who at one time did the mundane jobs, rivet catcher or heater Tradesmen’s mates etc. They have no chance apart from getting on a training course, few and far between. The old industries we grew up in had to go just how tech can you get with a fourteen pound hammer and a flat face. The thing is what went away is now coming back. As the Poles Koreans and others wages rise as they too want better living conditions so as we did in the 1970’s they price themselves out of the market.
      Stockton is getting to be a busy place with new industries and travel being easy people can go to where the jobs are on the large industrial estates in Durham. In our large family we only have one out of work and he is retraining, it is not all doom and gloom as the news media like to put out.
      Stockton people have always been go getters turning their hands to what there is going, we may not own Yachts but we live comfortable lives food in your stomach a roof over your head, If you come back to Stockton Ben and really look you will see a quiet revolution going on.


  5. There are several Grangefield Grammar lads here – possibly Chris Cannon, Paul Archer, Basil Formanuik and Edward Higginbotham to name but a fraction …


  6. The instructor front centre is Al Hart who ran the ICI ‘Discoverer’s’ outward bound based scheme .
    Some faces look familiar but before my time !


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