Becoming a projectionist (Florence Barton)

Florence Barton interviewed by Unknown: H.M.J.

Projectionist Florence Barton describes being recruited as a 'projectionette' during the Second World War after the male projectionists were called up.

They didn't have women until after the November blitz and then they started calling the men up. They asked some of us women whether we would like to try it and see if we liked it and much to their surprise or disgust, they never did tell me which, I turned out to be very good at it. You couldn't take it up you had to be picked. If you'd got nothing between your two ears like some of the usherettes hadn't I mean to say they wouldn't have been able to do anything. I was shown how to do it and within twelve months I had to be sent out on relief to help out because they were so short of staff, well I was doing chief's job but I wasn't getting chief's wages for it. Within six months I had second's wages because I turned out to be very successful. And then within the twelve months that I had done all this relief work I got the Manager to make an appointment with him and he said he would be along to see me, and he came and he asked me what I wanted and I said "Let's put it this way, for the last five years I've been doing chief's work for second's pay and I've done it all successfully haven't I?" and he said "Yes, what do you want?" I said "Don't you think I should have chief's wages?" He said, "But aren't you getting them?" I said "No I'm not!" he said "Well you are from now on my dear" and that's how I got the rise. Well of course it made a heck of a difference to my wages naturally. I was the only one that stayed all the time with them.

Title

Becoming a projectionist (Florence Barton)

Subject

projectionettes

Description

Projectionist Florence Barton describes being recruited as a 'projectionette' during the Second World War after the male projectionists were called up.

Creator

Coventry History Centre

Source

Interview with Florence Barton

Publisher

University of Warwick

Date

20/03/2017

Contributor

Coventry History Centre

Format

.mp3

Language

English

Type

Sound recording

Coverage

1940s
Coventry

Interviewer

Unknown: H.M.J.

Interviewee

Florence Barton

Date of Interview

19/12/1985

Location

Unknown

Transcription

They didn't have women until after the November blitz and then they started calling the men up. They asked some of us women whether we would like to try it and see if we liked it and much to their surprise or disgust, they never did tell me which, I turned out to be very good at it. You couldn't take it up you had to be picked. If you'd got nothing between your two ears like some of the usherettes hadn't I mean to say they wouldn't have been able to do anything. I was shown how to do it and within twelve months I had to be sent out on relief to help out because they were so short of staff, well I was doing chief's job but I wasn't getting chief's wages for it. Within six months I had second's wages because I turned out to be very successful. And then within the twelve months that I had done all this relief work I got the Manager to make an appointment with him and he said he would be along to see me, and he came and he asked me what I wanted and I said "Let's put it this way, for the last five years I've been doing chief's work for second's pay and I've done it all successfully haven't I?" and he said "Yes, what do you want?" I said "Don't you think I should have chief's wages?" He said, "But aren't you getting them?" I said "No I'm not!" he said "Well you are from now on my dear" and that's how I got the rise. Well of course it made a heck of a difference to my wages naturally. I was the only one that stayed all the time with them.

Original Format

One-to-one interview

Duration

00:01:31

Bit Rate/Frequency

320kbps

Additional Information

Clip (c) Coventry History Centre. Used with permission.

Citation

Coventry History Centre, “Becoming a projectionist (Florence Barton),” Projection Project, accessed December 7, 2019, https://projectionproject.warwick.ac.uk/items/show/464.

Output Formats