Saturday, 16 January 2016

Munitions Girls at Work and Play

George Kent munitions workers, November 1915 [Luton Times]

Sunday 16th January 1916: Anyone accustomed to the politics of shared kitchens and tea-rooms at their place of work will not be surprised by the instructions posted this week in the girls’ mess rooms at George Kent Ltd:

(1) Girls arriving early at the tea-tables should not empty the tea-pots; cups should be half filled, and then the tea-pots replenished.
(2) Girls are requested to put their chairs back to the table on rising from meals.
(3) Crockery must not be taken from the Mess Rooms without permission. Infringements of this rule will be regarded very seriously.
(4) Broken crockery must be reported, and handed to the Mess Room Staff.
(5) Paper and orange peel should not be thrown about the floor – rubbish baskets are provided.
(6) It is not allowed to feed animals in the Mess Room.
(7) Complaints as to seating accommodation, service or cooking, will at once be dealt with. Mrs. Nicholas is always in either Mess Room at mealtime.

The life of a munitions girl is not all work and no play. A very successful social was held last night at the Winter Assembly Hall, Waller Street, for George Kent employees. Five hundred attended the event and enjoyed a varied programme of entertainment. At the Waller Street end of the hall tables were set out for a whist drive, with space for 84 players; prizes of an umbrella, a jewel case and a scent pump were given to the three winning ladies and an inkstand, an antimony cigarette box and a tobacco pouch went to their male counterparts. Other games were played into which the participants threw themselves with great enthusiasm. After the whist drive and during other intervals a concert was given, Mr. Spratley’s band provided music for dancing, and food was supplied by Slater’s.

Source: George Kent archive; Luton Times, 14th January 1916

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