READER Geoff Powell’s letter about older staff not being wanted took me back to 1997, when workers were asked to volunteer for redundancy at the factory where i worked.
a recruitment agency was brought in to advise and assist, and the young female agent asked what my job was.
assuming she would know that the factory made turbochargers, i explained i was an apprentice-trained engineer who wrote programs and set automatic machinery to cut metal to make turbocharger parts out of castings.
this led to her asking what turbochargers were. i explained that they were for engines. ‘so you’re a mechanic, then,’ she said.
i explained that i wasn’t and tried to describe how i was trained to cut metal using machinery and, at 51, had about 30 years’ experience.
i could manage every type of lathe, milling, grinding and machine centre, whether manual or automatic, hydraulic system, plugboard, NC, CNC, conversational programmed or otherwise, and make and sharpen my own cutting tools. after 25 minutes and several pages of notes, she said: ‘there’s a lot of filming planned for the manchester and Liverpool areas. have you considered being a film extra?’
DAVID SYMONS, Skelmersdale, Lancs.
dmg media (UK)