Thursday, 17 February 2011

Raymochy - Work

I went to work in Lindsay's, it was really the village store. Everything then was loose, bread, biscuits, tea. They sold everything from a needle to an anchor. Wool, gloves, oil for lamps. The bacon came in a big roll sliced and it was loose as well. Snuff was a big thing too. – Margaret

I started in November in 1962 or 1963, I was 14 at the time. I used to cycle about four miles to get to work, eight miles a day. Coming back was the worst because it was all uphill. I fell foul of the law in my first year because I had no light on my bicycle, I got three summonses, one for the front light, one for the tail light and one for the reflector, the judge threw the case out because I was so young! I started mending, it was a very specialised job but then I was changed to twisting machines, which twisted all the different strands together. First of all they had to go to an assembly binder and then they were brought to a twister. I was paid 31s a week. Finished material came out of the mill, like blankets and the army green material for the army. It was excellent quality material. The thread came from England. – Teresa

If you’re born into something you don’t think it’s unusual. Anybody that done farming would say that their education was damaged. Our family grew flax and were very big into it. I went to a place called Ray and a man said ‘I know who you are, no call to speak’ because of my father and flax. – Paul Gallagher

I suppose my first ever work was during holidays on the farm. Forking hay on the trailers, helping Johnny Flood build the high stacks. You started off into tram-cocks and then built it up. It would have been five meters in diameter at the base. It had to slope out to protect it from the elements. People had great pride in their stacks. The corn stacks had to be thatched with rushes and then roped. The straw ropes were put into big bundles called clews. A good stack would have had two tonne of oats. – Billy McKinley

I went to Scotland at 16 and a few months in 1969. I got into Glasgow at 8 o’ clock in the morning. I was very inexperienced when I arrived, Derry was the furthest I’d ever been. It was a very big forbidding place. There was no-one with me on the first journey. It only took a week to get things sorted out. I worked for George Wimpy building all the big new estates. It was all picks and shovels at first, the ganger would mark the distance and we would dig it. After a year I worked with John Lawrence, another house builder, who was a chairman at the time with Glasgow Rangers. I was received alright; everything was so strange and different. Every pitfall you had was your own doing because you didn’t know the ropes. There was a lot of Irish there at that time. They stuck together but people from the Laggan didn’t seem to stick that much, maybe just in the pubs. I think they were more independent. A lot of Laggan people were Scots anyway. I went to R.J. McLeod civil engineering working on roads and bridges, which was a lot more interesting work. It was far more diverse work. I stayed with them for 38 years. – Tommy

My first job was with Glasgow Corporation but I got married when I was 20 so I had to resign. It was only two years. I worked in the city assessors department, preparing rates notices and things. That was 1964, but that rule was rescinded in '66 or '67. It was a good job but busy, I lived right beside it but I was always late. Eventually I got a job in the housing association until I took early retirement. – Maureen


Billy Davis

Paul McLaughlin

Michael Meehan

Elma McClean

Kevin Cunnane

Tommy Shiels

Maureen Shiels

Paul Gallagher

Billy McKinley

Leonard Roarty

Ena McClean

Liam McLoughlin

Ann Carrol

Liam Holmes

Virginia McLoone

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