Growing-up With Southall From 1904 (Memories of R.J. Meads)


Town’s War Memorial? 

                        During 1920-21 a committee was formed to consider what form a memorial to those men killed in the War should take. Most seemed to favour a hospital, but funds were very slow coming in. Perhaps this was due to the fact that there were plans for several more memorials in the town. In February 1921 a monument to old boys of Featherstone Road School was unveiled by Field Marshal Sir W.Robertson. Most churches had their own. On January 9th 1920 a bronze tablet to the 22 men of the Maypole who died was unveiled by Mr Otto Monsted at the Institute. Eventually the town’s memorial, which stands in the Green, was erected, and unveiled by our local M.P. Col. Sidney Peel. It did not meet with the approval of a great many townspeople. But who was to forsee that 24 years after that day, 8th April 1922, the adding of just “1939-45” on that same memorial was all the town thought necessary to honour those who died in the Second World War? ( “Lest We Forget” ). The site it stands on already belonged to the Council, they having bought the Manor House and 3 acres of land from the Scarisbrook family in 1913 for £6,100. A lot of brave men died for 1/- a day. Their lives were lost, but a good many in Southall made money out of the Wars. 

Times Change. 

                        Due to food shortages the Maypole could not hold its annual party in 1920, but a great change took place in the working hours. All those who were not on production of margarine, who had always worked day shifts, had their hours changed to 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. with 1 hour for lunch, and 8 – 12 on Saturdays. All others worked 8-hour shifts, 6 a.m. till 2 p.m. with ½-hour break, and 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. with ½-hour break. The night shift started at 10 p.m. on Sunday night. No change was made in wages, but there was nothing extra for shift work and nobody under 18 was allowed. This meant that a lot of new foremen were created, but again everything went according to plan and every department had a representative on a works committee. There was no trade union.