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Oral history project on the changing work identity of Govan's shipbuilders c. 1960-2016

  • GB 249 SOHC 33
  • Collection
  • August - October 2016

Oral history project conducted in 2016 by Rory Stride as research for his undergraduate history dissertation, ‘“Proud to be a Clyde shipbuilder. Clyde built”: The changing work identity of Govan’s shipbuilders, c.1960-present.’ The collection comprises interviews with seven men who were employed as shipbuilders between c.1960 and 2016 at Govan’s three shipyards: Alexander Stephen and Sons, Fairfield’s, and Harland and Wolff. The interviews were conducted in a variety of places across Glasgow. The interview questions were semi-structured and largely directed by the responses of the participants. Topics discussed include trade unions, working conditions, occupational injury, masculinity, politics, staff camaraderie, redundancy and periods of employment at different companies. There is a focus throughout the interviews on indicators and expression of masculine identity including alcohol consumption, paid employment and macho attitudes in the yards. The interviews also cover the workers' interactions with the trade union movement, focusing on their experiences of strike action. In addition, some of the key episodes in the Clyde’s shipbuilding history during the twentieth century are covered including: the closure of Harland and Wolff; the closure of Alexander Stephen and Sons; the Norwegian company Kvaerner’s takeover of the Fairfield yard from British Shipbuilders in 1988 and the withdrawal of Kvaerner from Govan in 1999 which threatened the existence of shipbuilding on the Clyde heading in to the twenty-first century.

Stride, Rory, fl. 2016, student at University of Strathclyde

Oral history project on women’s experiences of work and closure at James Templeton & Company Ltd, Glasgow, c. 1960-1981

  • GB 249 SOHC 32
  • Collection
  • May - September 2018

Oral history project, conducted in May - September 2018 by Rory Stride, with women formerly employed at James Templeton & Co., carpet manufacturers, between c. 1960 and 1981. A total of six women were interviewed. The interviews last approximately between 45 minutes and 1 hour 15 minutes and were conducted at a variety of places across Scotland. The interview questions were semi-structured and largely directed by the responses of the participants.

The interviews focus on the women’s working lives and their first experiences of employment after secondary school but specifically exploring their experience of work at James Templeton & Co., the preeminent carpet manufacturers in Glasgow during the 1960s and 1970s. The company had seven factories, located in the east end and southside of Glasgow with the company’s Crown Street factory being the last to close in early 1981 when Templeton Carpets amalgamated with Stoddard Carpets. Topics discussed include trade unions, working conditions, gender divisions in labour, staff camaraderie, management and staff relationships, and periods of redundancy, unemployment and re-employment after leaving James Templeton & Co. The interviews also cover the women's feelings and opinions regarding the gentrification and redevelopment of the former headquarters and factory of James Templeton & Co. located at Templeton Street on the north eastern edge of Glasgow Green.

University of Strathclyde | Scottish Oral History Centre