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Thread: Gloucester: Aircrafts parts factory

  1. #11
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    Default Nuts and bolts men

    Natelie

    I have sent this plea of yours to a friend of mine who has museum contacts in Gloucester, he could come up with something for you. another oldie like myself, in our 80's.
    Digger.

  2. #12
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    Could this be "Charlesworth Bodies"? They were a manufacturer of motor vehicle bodies based in Coventry, there is a 1945 reference (AVIA 9/81) in the Ministry of Aircraft Production files in the PRO catalogue with the title "De-requisitioning of Charlesworth Bodies Ltd" which implies that the form had been directed to do work for the MAP during the war and was now being allowed to resume their normal peacetime business. Although Coventry based it is possible they were asked to manage other sites in wartime.

  3. #13
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    Philip,

    It sounds to me very much as if you have solved the mystery, and it just goes to prove the dangers of relying on oral accounts--my father obviously remembered the name as BODDIS instead of BODIES.

    Anyway, I have managed to get the photo of the inside of the factory up on the internet, and you can look at it at the link below. My grandfather is the tall balding gentleman in the suit standing towards the back and slightly to the right.

    If any of you with the appropriate expertise could look at the picture and tell me what they think the people are making on their lathes, I would be very interested. There are curious stacks of objects on a table to the right. My father has always said that the factory made spare parts for planes, but no idea what these spare parts were. The factory was definitely in Gloucester, not Coventry--it may have needed to be relocated after the bombing there or alternatively it may have been a branch of the main firm.



    http://www.nataliejaneprior.com/RAF_Photos.htm

  4. #14
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    I have been searching for a Gloster dispersed factory in Newent for some time now. I found this posting regarding Charlesworth Bodies. Charlesworth, a Coventry based company, was requisitioned by the govt in WW2 and ran the factory in Newent, Gloucestershire.

    I think you can find it here.

    http://wtp2.appspot.com/wheresthepat...one&rgrat=None

    If you locate the same spot on google maps

    https://www.google.co.uk/maps


    and drag the yellow streetview man to Tewkesbury lane, it has the telltale MOD fence, building design and gatehouse.

  5. #15
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    Natalie,
    Just a comment regarding the belief that the factory in question "only made spare parts for aircraft". In my opinion, no factory ever made "just spare parts". Any commercial firm receiving a contract to manufacture anything for the government in wartime would be required to manufacture whatever it was to an agreed price, and quality, in the numbers required, and by a due date. They would not necessarily know what the final use of the item would be or even what aircraft type would be concerned (particularly if it was a small part which might not be observable from outside the aircraft). Very many smaller "general" parts would be specified for use in a wide variety of aircraft types (wheels, instruments, radios, electrical and oxygen equipment, aerials, hydraulic equipment, pulleys, fasteners, and general hardware), while others would be more type-specific. And the vast majorty of parts would go to the factories concerned in manufacturing the complete aircraft, whilst a proportion would be intended as spares which could be used to replace damaged originals in existing aircraft. However there would generally be no way that the workers on the production line in the factory would really know which particular item would be sent directly to aircraft manufacturers and which were sent to the RAF's system of stores depots or the supply system generally (except perhaps those persons actually physically despatching the parts, and the ones in the office who were aware of the contracts and what was being demanded.) Parts that had a limited service life (such as tyres and tubes, brake parts, engine parts, gun barrels) would have to be produced in far greater numbers than the numbers required to equip all the aircraft actually in service at any given time. So no criticism intended of your father's memory, but I think what he was meaning was not so much "spare parts" but more like "aircraft parts" or perhaps "aircraft componenets" AS OPPOSED TO complete aircraft.
    David D
    Last edited by David Duxbury; 13th May 2015 at 23:45.

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