Oral History Interviewees
Dennis joined Kodak at Harrow in October 1974 as part of the graduate intake, after completing a PhD in theoretical physics. He worked in the research lab to begin with, specialising in phototype setting papers and later Kodacolour film. In the late 1980s he moved to Kodak in France to oversee the transfer of part of the production process. On return to Harrow, he managed the testing department, then in the late 1990s, he became a product manager, following a spell in Rochester, New York. Later Dennis was posted to China to manage a new state of the art production site. Finally he retired from Kodak as manufacturing director in October 2007.
Derek worked for Kodak from August 1965 to January 1971 as an apprentice instrument mechanic, then technician apprentice, attending the Kodak apprentice training school, then being sponsored by Kodak to acquire ONC and HNC (Ordinary and Higher National Certificates) in engineering. Once qualified, Derek worked as an instrument engineer in the film sensitisation department. He played cricket for Kodak cricket club. Numerous members of his family also worked for Kodak, including his grandfather, father and uncle. Derek left Kodak to pursue a career in engineering, moving to Joe Lyons, the food manufacturer, in Greenford.
Carole and Jayne
Carole worked as a nurse at the Kodak occupational health centre between 1975-77, as well as having school holiday jobs there. Her sister, Jayne, worked in the PR department at Hemel Hempstead, 1977-81. Their father also worked at Kodak for around 40 years, rising to become manager of the area 2 film finishing department and also involved in setting up the employee benefits department, retiring in 1977. Their grandfather also worked at Kodak as a bookbinder. Both Carole and Jayne attended Kodak Christmas parties as children, their father attended dinner dances and had an interest in sailing (Kodak had its own yacht at Lymington). Their grandfather was heavily involved in the athletics and shooting clubs at Kodak.
Joan Florence Shacklady (née Joan Cork)
Joan started working for Kodak at the age of fifteen in 1940; she left school when the war started and was working for an insurance company when she heard from a friend that she could earn double at Kodak. Joan started her time with the company sifting through negatives and rolls of film, checking for defects, but soon moved to the Personnel department, where duties included issuing security passes for the site, and helping set up new starters. Whilst at Kodak, Joan enjoyed taking part in company pantomimes and musical performances as a chorus girl. In 1958, she left Kodak to become a housewife.
John started working for Kodak in 1965; he worked for Kodak for about 40 years in the R&D (research and development) laboratories, and held the job title “I S business support manager for European R&D”. He worked with a team of around 500 at the start but it went down to about 30 before the site closed in 2005. After leaving Kodak he set up his own consultancy company in laboratory informatics.
Mike started working for Kodak in 1973. He worked at Kodak for a little over 35 years, and all except 2 of those were at Harrow. He had a number of very different roles during that period, including 10 years directly associated with manufacturing. Mike was also involved with new product evaluation/customer troubleshooting, supply chain planning, logistics and process/people improvement programs. After Kodak Mike became a chemistry technician at Nower Hill High School, Pinner.
Michael started working for Kodak in 1968 at twenty-three; he had just married, bought a house, and had a baby on the way, so in addition to fulfilling an interest in photography, the salary at Kodak was a major draw. For the first five years, he worked as a shift technician, commuting from Hemel Hempstead, before coming off of shift work in 1973 and moving to Pinner to be closer to the site. He moved into various management positions throughout his thirty-two-year career at Kodak; whilst always based at Harrow, he had the opportunity to work in locations including Madrid and Milan, and Annesley.
John started working at Kodak in 1988. He worked shifts on the factory floor on the production line. John worked on different areas of the line, sharing the work between a team of 9. These jobs included unpacking, moving and storing large rolls of photographic paper, making up chemicals for the machines, such as inks, or working on the machine itself. John left in 2006 after the site closed and became a school technician.
Anthony Larry (Tony) Kaye was born in 1953. He joined Kodak in September 1978 having gained a PhD at University. After five years (1983) he was sent to the Eastman Kodak facility in Rochester, New York state. Within a year or so of returning to Kodak Harrow he was the Quality Leader, responsible for all Kodak’s film sold in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. For most of his career Tony says his function was to act as an interface between Manufacturing, Marketing and Research & Development. He left Kodak in September 2006 when “digital was eroding the sales volume of film”.