Mapping Memory by National Museums Liverpool

Mapping Memory National Museums Liverpool

Working docks

Jim Smith

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Transcript for Jim Smith

The ships were everywhere. We used to do all the Isle of Man ships; Ben Machree, Lady of Man. All these docks were full and we’d travel round and we were kept so busy it was unbelievable, day and night. In fact, Mr Gordon Rimmer he used to come in at one o’clock in the morning to complete some of the jobs. He was so keen and so precise and worried about the ship that was going to sail and if it’s going to go with the tide, worth millions and millions of pounds it’s got to be right and ready. Anyway, he’d worry about that. So while we were working there, eventually plastic came about, people were making everything out of plastic; plastic compasses, plastic life boats, so that came about and then all of a sudden they were saying the River Mersey was silting up for the south socks, which it was. They all started to disappear because containerisation had started to come in and the shipping did disappear but mainly it left Liverpool to go to Immingham, being on the east coast which was handy for Europe and we were always handy for the Americas. It did decline something terrible.