The first year of operation

An account of the first year of operation at the Frampton site

contributed by Linda Leach

Developments at Frampton
The factory opened in April 1916
"CADBURY'S CONDENSED MILK"

It is only a year since the opening of the Frampton factory, but already  this offspring of  Bournville is emulating its parent, and is growing and developing rapidly.

Summer 1916

By May 1916 the plant was at work, but all of it had not been installed, and  the buildings were not finished.  During the summer the builders remove their materials, and brought the outside of the factory into order, so that towards the close of the year one could almost image that the buildings were mellowing to there surroundings.

All through the summer the milk arrived daily, and was dealt with speedily.  At the same time late instalments of the plant, tardily delivered because of wartime difficulties, came to hand and were put down.

Winter 1916-1917

The winter came, and the milk, after being cleaned and pasteurised, was then taken every day to the railway station for transit to Birmingham and other large towns for sale to the public.

Spring 1917

This year the beginning of April saw the factory again at work on its usual product, but almost at once renewed building activity and alterations to the plant betokened new developments.  Canal boats arrived with plant and material, the Frampton staff worked early and late to dispose of it, and by the middle of the month the factory has started on its new line of manufacture - CONDENSED MILK FOR THE GOVERNMENT.

War Work - Bournville Girls

Several Bournville girls, under the charge of Miss Griffin, went down to Frampton and took up their quarters in the village.  With an equal number of local girls they started to work - filling, soldering, labelling, case making and packing the new product.

In spite of delays and difficulties due to the  necessity for  improvisation consequent upon the starting of a new manufacture they adapted themselves to work.  Each day the output grew until by the end of the first week substantial progress had been made.

Since then the output has steadily increased , and at the time of writing a large quantity is being produced each week, and despatched to Army canteens in all parts of the country.  Needless to say, great interest has been taken in this "war work" and all concerned have worked, and are working with a will, not only to send the best possible product to the troops, but to ensure that it is worthy to bear the name "CADBURY".

Since the invasion of Frampton by the fair Amazons mentioned above, the girls have been introduced into the proper work, and are shaping well at churn washing and milk handling.

It is interesting to see one gently stirring up the foam milk in a big cauldron like a big heater; a sight which makes one think of gigantic milk puddings.

Cheese making

In addition to the work in connection with the manufacture of condensed milk, a building has been erected and a plant put down for manufacture of cheese.

Mr George Cadbury's visit

Mr. George Cadbury who visited the factory in April with Mr. George Cadbury junr., writes:- "It was interesting to see how in three weeks new business had been started.  It involved  a good deal of thought and arrangements - machines for filling the tins, cases for packing them to say nothing of preparing the milk so that it will keep etc.  From what we gather the girls are happy and comfortable, though it is quite a new experience for them to be so much out of the world; they had seen no newspaper for some days.  Now the firm is arranging for a supply of papers daily to be brought by one of our vans that runs every day to Stonehouse.  They have a dining room, as also have the men, with a woman to cook the dinners, etc.  Mr.  Robinson  on the afternoon of our visit took the girls to Gloucester to see the Cathedral, etc., he was rather afraid they might be lonely at first in a country place.

Lunch was served at Kimberley House, where the foreman Mr. J. Wellings lives, in the comfortable room set aside by the firm, and it was interesting to hear the constant rattle of tins coming in full and going out empty - most are delivered by road and not many by water, as at Knighton",

Taken from BOURNVILLE WORKS MAGAZINE  June 1917

This page was added by Iris Capps on 08/03/2009.

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