Ref NoWIN/032
CollectionWinstanley Oral History Collection
TitleMr. Chalklin interviewed by Michael Winstanley
Name of creatorWinstanley, Michael
Date9/02/1976 - 04/05/1976
Duration3 hr. 09 min. 35 sec.
Extent1 sound tape reel
2 audio file Waveform Audio
DescriptionMr. Chalklin, born 1899, interviewed in Ightham. His father was an odd job man and estate man on a farm, his mother did odd jobs on a farm. He was from a family of eleven. He worked as a butchers boy then an agricultural labourer.

Track 1 Side A [01:34:47] [00:00:03] Introduction: interviewee is Mr Chalkin [C] of Oldbury Ightham. [00:00:27] C was born September 1899. [00:00:35] Discusses his father’s job. [00:02:06] C discusses his father’s living situations. [00:03:32] Wages of labourers and waggoners. [00:04:46] Labourers and piece work. [00:05:32] Hop picking mentioned. [00:06:08] Pubs and pub-goers mentality. [00:07:25] C discusses not drinking anymore and change in people’s mentalities towards money. [00:08:32] C compares the prices of houses. [00:09:04] C discusses how he was happier when he was younger – making up their own games. [00:13:24] Making pea shooters. [00:14:40] Discussion of toys. [00:15:47] C talks about how big his family was. [00:16:28] Discussion of why people had such big families. [00:17:33] C mentions clubs that would help people who were off work sick or had been laid off. [00:19:02] Mention of people who might abuse the sick benefit clubs. [00:19:50] Club days. [00:22:56] Family hop picking. [00:23:10] Oast houses and drying – wages and hours. [00:25:06] C talks about the process of drying in the kiln. [00:37:30] Hop pillows. [00:38:35] Discussion of hours that people would work on the drying shift. [00:39:32] Refreshments for workers from the farmers. [00:40:17] Meal times fitting around work schedule. [00:42:47] Brief discussion of how long people would hop dry each year. [00:43:46] Discussion of who used to work the books. [00:46:13] Dwellers in Ightham Moat. [00:47:49] Other farms who had hops in the area. [00:49:40] Rifling system. [00:52:19] Women helping their husbands with rifling. [00:52:43] Women’s jobs on the farm. [00:54:56] Women’s pay for days work. C discusses his mother doing these jobs. [00:55:25] Talks about his mother’s role and brief mention of her money management. [00:56:14] Discussion of benefit clubs again – what risks there were. [00:57:31] C discusses the reasons he believes that benefit clubs disappeared. [00:59:56] C talks about leaving school and finding a job with the butchers. [01:03:41] Quick mention of wages C would have been paid and hours he worked. [01:03:56] Talk about the jobs C had to do for the butchers – deliveries. [01:06:30] Discussion about the different types of people the C would have to deliver to and the meat they ordered. [01:07:18] C talks fondly about working for his boss. [01:09:37] C talks about animosity between locals and travellers. [01:10:57] Interviewer reintroduces interviewee for second interview. [01:11:22] Discussion of how meat would be stored in the butchers. [01:12:29] C talks about Maidstone Market. [01:16:48] Mention of the struggles of deliveries in adverse weather. [01:18:53] Competition between butchers. [01:20:10] Times of the rounds C had to work for the deliveries. [01:20:35] Jobs C had to do once his deliveries were done. [01:23:13] Butchers opening times when C was working there. [01:24:13] Serving in the shop and sorting order for customers in the butchers. [01:24:51] Rounds and times in the summer working for the butchers. [01:26:35] Discussion of times that C would have to do rounds, talking about taking extra meat on the round to make sure everyone got what they wanted. [01:27:58] Discussion of market days and what would happen with the deliveries. [01:30:20] Discussion of big houses and what they would order. [01:31:29] Talks about the people who lived in the big houses – Professor Newman and Lady Board. [01:32:13] C talks about leaving the butchers and moving onto farm work. [01:34:22] Tips at Christmas time from houses.

Track 2 [01:34:45] side B of Mr Chalkin tape. [00:00:04] Discussion of what would happen with the tips at Christmas time. [00:00:38] Discussion of Christmas perks. [00:02:07] Christmas working hours in the butchers. [00:03:12] Deals the butcher would offer at the end of the week. [00:04:40] Talk briefly about working in the butchers – how good the job was. [00:05:29] Mention of what would happen with the leftovers from the animals. [00:07:57] Salt on the meat. [00:09:03] Skinning the animals. [00:11:12] Discussion about C slaughtering animals as part of his job. [00:13:45] How well C was treated at the butchers – being given food. [00:14:40] Inspectors in the butchers. [00:15:47] Discussion of attitudes towards foreign meat in the butchers. [00:17:55] Audio missing, transcript there. [00:18:07] Cricket before WWI. [00:19:05] Football for working-class men. [00:20:20] C’s fathers jobs. [00:22:57] Toff’s and sport. [00:26:47] Sports at school. [00:28:05] Teaching when C was at school. [00:31:09] Children working on the farm. [00:34:10] Life of the fruit pickers who came down from London. [00:39:25] Games C would play when he was younger. [00:51:21] Toys kids would have. [00:53:51] Helping around the house. [00:55:24] Brief discussion about C’s sisters going into service. [00:57:37] Food C ate when he was a child. [00:59:23] Bundles of seal wood for kindling. [01:00:44] Brief discussion about attitudes to money. [01:02:53] Fond memories of the ‘old days’. [01:06:18] Leaving the village for days out. [01:08:13] Keg-Megs in Maidstone. [01:09:33] Primrose League. [01:10:39] Scouts.
[01:12:09] Church lads. [01:14:18] Days out with family. [01:17:15] Discussion about where C’s mum would do her shopping. [01:18:11] Going to the pictures. [01:20:55] Carriers van in Ightham. [01:27:09] Discussion of publicans. [01:28:47] Pub being a social centre. [01:30:54] Beer being provided for workers. [01:34:14] Farm bailiffs and stewards.
NotesTranscript exists for this interview.
PhysicalDescription1 sound tape reel : analogue, 5 inch reel, 9,5 cm/sec, 2 track, mono
Waveform Audio
Related OrganisationUniversity of Kent
Related PlaceIghtham, Kent
Access filenameWIN-032-001A-A.mp3
CategoryAudio recordings
Access conditionsAvailable for consultation at the University of Kent's Special Collections & Archives reading room, Templeman Library, University of Kent, Canterbury, CT2 7NU. Access is available via digital listening copies. The University of Kent acknowledges the intellectual property rights of those named as contributors in this recording and the rights of those not identified.
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