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STOWFORD PAPER MILL

SCRAP BOOK

EMPLOYEES, SPORTS TEAMS & SOCIAL EVENTS

1931

CT30s
PORTALS (IVYBRIDGE) CRICKET TEAM

The team played in the “A” Section of the United Churches League.

Other teams at this time were: Plymouth and Stonehouse Gas Co., City Gas Department, Captain Dockyard Department, R.A.S.C. (T.), Lawranians, Sutton Unionists, Torpedo Depot, Woodland Athletic, Naval Store Department.

Funding for all the sports sections around the time of the Great Depression was tight. Committee members worked hard to ensure everyone had their fair share of money available. During a General Committee meeting in 1935, Devon Valley Mill (a sister paper mill in Exeter) were minuted as being willing to provide 6 used cricket balls. The Ivybridge committee agreed that an offer of 15/- and not exceeding 20/- should be made. Proposals were tabled for the purchase of two new sets of pads at a cost of £2-3-0, five pairs of batting gloves for the sum of £1-14-0, two new bats at a cost of £2-17-0 and a new cricket bag costing £2-1-0.

With the committee in amenable mood, a Mrs Thompson reported a shortage of crockery for teas!

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1956

Portals 57-58
PORTALS ATHLETIC AFC

In the 1955-56 season Portals’ Athletic AFC became league winners. In late April 1956, a big crowd “defied the inclement weather to witness a game worthy of the occasion” with Portals defeating Lee Mill United 3-2 to become League Champions of Division 1 East. It was fitting that Portal’s captain scored the winner.

Learn more about Portals Athletic ...

1959

MrF
MR FREEMANTLE RETIRES

Mr A.S. Freemantle retired after completing 46 years’ service at Stowford paper Mill.

He started his career in the paper-making industry with Portals at Laverstoke in 1913 and after serving in the Middle East and India during WW1 he returned to become Secretary to the Mill Manager there. He looked after the programming of the machines at Ivybridge and Turkey Mill. In 1930 he transferred to Ivybridge where he took on the paper testing role when there was no laboratory as such in the mill. In 1953 he took charge of the new Progress and Planning Department.

Netball Teams.
NETBALL TEAMS

Portals netball team was formed in 1959 and had a very successful first season. In March the team took on the ladies from Devon Valley Mill and defeated them 20-14. In 1960 Portal’s Netball first VII team gained 14 points out of a possible 18 in the Plymouth Summer Evening League.

The photograph depicts both netball teams from 1959.

1963

MrM
BILL MITCHELL RETIRES – OCTOBER 1963

Bill Mitchell started at the paper mill as a “cutter boy” aged just 14. He earned 7 shillings a week which included bonuses. “You had to keep cracking in those days. It was a hard life – you worked 12 hours a day”.

Bill began his employment in 1913 under the ownership of the Clapperton syndicate. This was before the fire of 5 May 1914 which destroyed the rag loft, an event he remembered well. A few weeks later war was declared, and mill men began to enlist.

In 1916, Bill aged 18, went to Plymouth where he enlisted, joining the Duke of Cornwall Light Infantry. After two months training, he went to France on the Western Front, where he experienced the harsh reality of the trenches.

Bill enjoyed sport and was a good short distance runner. His speed also came in useful when playing for Ivybridge Football Club.

Bill retired from the mill after 50 years of service on 26th October 1963. It was only his time in the army which disrupted his continuous service.

In 1987 Bill returned to the paper mill as a guest of honour at the mill’s 200th anniversary celebrations, 74 years after he first arrived in 1913.

Learn more about the Mill's Bicentenary ...

1964

StfPty1964
MissStfd
FIRM’S PARTY – DECEMBER 1964

MISS STOWFORD COMPETITION

On Saturday 12th December Stowfordians and their friends, 150 in all, defied gale-force winds to foregather at the Torbay Hotel, Torquay, for the purpose of feasting and dancing, with a modicum of imbibing.

Undoubtedly the high spot of a riotous evening was the choosing of ‘Miss Stowford’ in, what is hoped will be a preliminary round of the competition to elect ‘Miss Wiggins Teape’.

Gateway (the internal magazine of Wiggins Teape) – 1964

1969

Flmnght

Mill’s “Open Night” film show had four full houses.

Far more people than could be accommodated wanted to be present on a night in April when there was the additional attraction of a film show which was seen in four houses of fifty people at a time – a total of 200.

 The cinema was the men’s dining room, not exactly up to Odeon standards, but the film Return to Lochaber more than made up for the lack of amenities.

Praise for the film was unanimous. One visitor said “I’ve heard a lot about industries opening up in depressed areas, but this is the first tangible evidence of it that I have seen – a wonderful enterprise”.

Praise was also given to Miss E. Ridge who organised refreshments, helped by willing volunteers from the staff. Although it meant a long day, everyone concerned, organisers, guides, caterers, projectionist and assistant considered the effort well worthwhile.

Gateway (the internal magazine of Wiggins Teape) June 1969

MrC
ARTHUR CASELEY RETIRES – OCTOBER 1969

Arthur started work in the mill in 1918 completing 51 years’ service when he retired.

Arthur recalls working 12 hour days for his first job as a “cutter boy”, sitting on the floor and straightening the sheets of paper as they came off the sheeter. Thirty years later he became a Machine Foreman.

He recalled the times of hardship particularly during the General Strike of 1926. The coal was of such inferior quality that the stoker was unable to maintain a sufficient head of steam to keep the wheels turning. Arthur who was a beater assistant at the time decided to go down and lend a hand. He was so good at it that he found himself doing it for the next four years.

In his fifty-one years he worked under 14 managers and kept pace with the increase in production of some 400% as well as adapting himself to the new technological age of papermaking.

Arthur was a good all-round sportsman although his specialism was middle and long-distance running. He was also a crack rifle shot, a ‘tower of strength’ in the tug-o’-war team and later a keen bowls player.

Arthur was one of the chief instigators of the Mill Sports Club which was founded in 1926.

To mark is long service the management presented him with a substantial cheque and from his many colleagues and friends he was given a gold watch.

1981

Raft Race in 1981
Stowford Special innovations
RIVER DART RAFT RACE

For the River Dart Raft Race organised by the Totnes & District Round Table which each year raises money for charity, Stowford Mill designed the “Stowford Special”. This raft featured a unique design with the possibility of low water in mind. The front and rear 45-gallon drums were fitted with axles to enable the craft to trundle happily through the shallows. This design feature however was not required on the day, as arriving at the start, some 10 miles upstream from Totnes, the team were greeted by the River Dart in full flow, after torrential rain.

Whilst the design and construction of the raft did not result in a great turn of speed it was extremely stable, making negotiation of the weirs fairly easy. The raft successfully reached Totnes in good shape.

1984

C&P
CELIA & CLYDO RETIRE 1984

Celia Shepherd and Clyde “Clydo” Pawley retired in May. Celia and Clydo were brother and sister and although born 5 years apart shared the same Birthday. Not only that, they retired on the same day having amassed 83 years’ service between them and they lived in adjacent houses in Ivybridge.

Celia started work at the mill in 1939, aged 14, She was supervisor of the rag loft when it closed in 1968, but went on to run the mill shop and was responsible for producing thousands of boxes required for the primrose distribution each year. Celia became the first lady in Ivybridge to receive a 35-year award.

Clydo joined the mill in 1946 after war service in the Royal Navy.

During his career Clydo worked on No.2 and No.3 machines as a sizerman, in the cutting room and on the super calender. His last few years’ service was spent as serviceman in the salle. Clydo recalled working 16 hours a day for four months to make the paper for the Coronation stamps.

1988

BD
FIRST NEW CUTTER

On 10th June 1988 Brenda Dean, General Secretary of SOGAT ‘82 officially opened No.1 Cutter at Stowford Paper Mill at a special ceremony attended by Company Directors and mill employees.

This was in fact part of a double celebration taking place at the mill as the next day a Quality Fun Day was hosted within the mill grounds for employees and their families in recognition of the achievements relating to the Quality Improvement Process which had been conducted since the previous year.

1992

Football kit
Football Team.
EUROPEAN FOOTBALL COMPETITION

In 1992, Stowford Mill football team were fortunate to be one of the eight teams drawn from a hat to compete in “Le premier Concours Internationale de ArjoWiggins” literally the first International (inter-mill) Football Competition to be held at one of the company’s mill sites in France at Annonay. The event took place over the weekend of April 25th and 26th.

Ivybridge were drawn against the eventual winners of Papeterie de L’Aa in the first round of matches and were beaten 3-0. After a quick break for food and wine (when in France!) the team took on the Paris central office eleven. After heroically coming back from 2-0 to draw level, the team lost on penalties. This sadly meant Ivybridge were eliminated from the competition.

STOWFORD PAPER MILL

SCRAP BOOK

EMPLOYEES, SPORTS TEAMS & SOCIAL EVENTS

1931

PORTALS (IVYBRIDGE) CRICKET TEAM

The team played in the “A” Section of the United Churches League.
Other teams at this time were: Plymouth and Stonehouse Gas Co., City Gas Department, Captain Dockyard Department, R.A.S.C. (T.), Lawranians, Sutton Unionists, Torpedo Depot, Woodland Athletic, Naval Store Department
Funding for all the sports sections around the time of the Great Depression was tight. Committee members worked hard to ensure everyone had their fair share of money available.
General Committee meeting – 1935
Devon Valley Mill (a sister paper mill in Exeter) were minuted as being willing to provide 6 used cricket balls. The Ivybridge committee agreed that an offer of 15/- and not exceeding 20/- should be made. Proposals were tabled for the purchase of two new sets of pads at a cost of £2-3-0, five pairs of batting gloves for the sum of £1-14-0, two new bats at a cost of £2-17-0 and a new cricket bag costing £2-1-0.
With the committee in amenable mood, a Mrs Thompson reported a shortage of crockery for teas!

1956

PORTALS ATHLETIC AFC

In the 1955-56 season Portals’ Athletic AFC became league winners. In late April 1956, a big crowd “defied the inclement weather to witness a game worthy of the occasion” with Portals defeating Lee Mill United 3-2 to become League Champions of Division 1 East. It was fitting that Portal’s captain scored the winner.

1959

MR FREEMANTLE RETIRES

Mr A.S. Freemantle retired after completing 46 years’ service at Stowford paper Mill.
He started his career in the paper-making industry with Portals at Laverstoke in 1913 and after serving in the Middle East and India during WW1 he returned to become Secretary to the Mill Manager there. He looked after the programming of the machines at Ivybridge and Turkey Mill. In 1930 he transferred to Ivybridge where he took on the paper testing role when there was no laboratory as such in the mill. In 1953 he took charge of the new Progress and Planning Department.

NETBALL TEAMS

Portals netball team was formed in 1959 and had a very successful first season. In March the team took on the ladies from Devon Valley Mill and defeated them 20-14. In 1960 Portal’s Netball first VII team gained 14 points out of a possible 18 in the Plymouth Summer Evening League.
The photograph depicts both netball teams from 1959.

1963

BILL MITCHELL RETIRES

Bill Mitchell started at the paper mill as a “cutter boy” aged just 14. He earned 7 shillings a week which included bonuses. “You had to keep cracking in those days. It was a hard life – you worked 12 hours a day”.
Bill began his employment in 1913 under the ownership of the Clapperton syndicate. This was before the fire of 5 May 1914 which destroyed the rag loft, an event he remembered well. A few weeks later war was declared, and mill men began to enlist.
In 1916, Bill aged 18, went to Plymouth where he enlisted, joining the Duke of Cornwall Light Infantry. After two months training, he went to France on the Western Front, where he experienced the harsh reality of the trenches.
Bill enjoyed sport and was a good short distance runner. His speed also came in useful when playing for Ivybridge Football Club.
Bill retired from the mill after 50 years of service on 26th October 1963. It was only his time in the army that disrupted his continuous service.
In 1987 Bill returned to the paper mill as a guest of honour at the mill’s 200th anniversary celebrations, 74 years after he first arrived in 1913.

1964

FIRM’S DECEMBER PARTY & MISS STOWFORD COMPETITION

On Saturday 12th December Stowfordians and their friends, 150 in all, defied gale-force winds to foregather at the Torbay Hotel, Torquay, for the purpose of feasting and dancing, with a modicum of imbibing.
Undoubtedly the high spot of a riotous evening was the choosing of ‘Miss Stowford’ in, what is hoped will be a preliminary round of the competition to elect ‘Miss Wiggins Teape’.
Gateway (the internal magazine of Wiggins Teape) – 1964

1969

Mill’s “Open Night” film show had four full houses.
Far more people than could be accommodated wanted to be present on a night in April when there was the additional attraction of a film show which was seen in four houses of fifty people at a time – a total of 200.
 The cinema was the men’s dining room, not exactly up to Odeon standards, but the film Return to Lochaber more than made up for the lack of amenities.
Praise for the film was unanimous. One visitor said “I’ve heard a lot about industries opening up in depressed areas, but this is the first tangible evidence of it that I have seen – a wonderful enterprise”.
Praise was also given to Miss E. Ridge who organised refreshments, helped by willing volunteers from the staff. Although it meant a long day, everyone concerned, organisers, guides, caterers, projectionist and assistant considered the effort well worthwhile.
Gateway (the internal magazine of Wiggins Teape) June 1969

ARTHUR CASELEY RETIRES

Arthur started work in the mill in 1918 completing 51 years’ service when he retired.
Arthur recalls working 12 hour days for his first job as a “cutter boy”, sitting on the floor and straightening the sheets of paper as they came off the sheeter. Thirty years later he became a Machine Foreman.
He recalled the times of hardship particularly during the General Strike of 1926. The coal was of such inferior quality that the stoker was unable to maintain a sufficient head of steam to keep the wheels turning. Arthur who was a beater assistant at the time decided to go down and lend a hand. He was so good at it that he found himself doing it for the next four years.
In his fifty-one years he worked under 14 managers and kept pace with the increase in production of some 400% as well as adapting himself to the new technological age of papermaking.
Arthur was a good all-round sportsman although his specialism was middle and long-distance running. He was also a crack rifle shot, a ‘tower of strength’ in the tug-o’-war team and later a keen bowls player.
Arthur was one of the chief instigators of the Mill Sports Club which was founded in 1926.
To mark is long service the management presented him with a substantial cheque and from his many colleagues and friends he was given a gold watch.

1981

RIVER DART RAFT RACE

For the River Dart Raft Race organised by the Totnes & District Round Table which each year raises money for charity, Stowford Mill designed the “Stowford Special”. This raft featured a unique design with the possibility of low water in mind. The front and rear 45-gallon drums were fitted with axles to enable the craft to trundle happily through the shallows. This design feature however was not required on the day, as arriving at the start, some 10 miles upstream from Totnes, the team were greeted by the River Dart in full flow, after torrential rain.
Whilst the design and construction of the raft did not result in a great turn of speed it was extremely stable, making negotiation of the weirs fairly easy. The raft successfully reached Totnes in good shape.

1984

CELIA & CLYDO RETIRE

Celia Shepherd and Clyde ‘Clydo’ Pawley retired in May. Celia and Clydo were brother and sister and although born 5 years apart shared the same Birthday. Not only that, they retired on the same day having amassed 83 years’ service between them and they lived in adjacent houses in Ivybridge.
Celia started work at the mill in 1939, aged 14, She was supervisor of the rag loft when it closed in 1968, but went on to run the mill shop and was responsible for producing thousands of boxes required for the primrose distribution each year. Celia became the first lady in Ivybridge to receive a 35-year award.
Clydo joined the mill in 1946 after war service in the Royal Navy.
During his career Clydo worked on No.2 and No.3 machines as a sizerman, in the cutting room and on the super calender. His last few years’ service was spent as serviceman in the salle. Clydo recalled working 16 hours a day for four months to make the paper for the Coronation stamps.

1988

NEW CUTTER

On 10th June 1988 Brenda Dean, General Secretary of SOGAT ‘82 officially opened No.1 Cutter at Stowford Paper Mill at a special ceremony attended by Company Directors and mill employees.
This was in fact part of a double celebration taking place at the mill as the next day a Quality Fun Day was hosted within the mill grounds for employees and their families in recognition of the achievements relating to the Quality Improvement Process which had been conducted since the previous year.

1992

EUROPEAN FOOTBALL TOURNAMENT

In 1992, Stowford Mill football team were fortunate to be one of the eight teams drawn from a hat to compete in “Le premier Concours Internationale de ArjoWiggins” literally the first International (inter-mill) Football Competition to be held at one of the company’s mill sites in France at Annonay. The event took place over the weekend of April 25th and 26th.
Ivybridge were drawn against the eventual winners of Papeterie de L’Aa in the first round of matches and were beaten 3-0. After a quick break for food and wine (when in France!) the team took on the team from the Paris central office. After heroically coming back from 2-0 to draw level, the team lost on penalties. This sadly meant Ivybridge were eliminated from the competition.