We would really like to build up a picture of the early John Hinde company (pre-Waterford Glass) and the people that worked with him. If anyone worked with John Hinde in the early days or recognises themselves in any postcard, it would be great to hear from you (info [@] johnhindecollection.com).
I found this article on Irishcentral.com and just as interesting was this comment beneath it:
I remember when Mr. Hinde set up his printing plant. I worked for George Watt in Bridgefoot st in Dublin. We built special drying elevators for the sheets of post cards after they were treated with a clear emulsion which was then passed through a hot roll ironing machine. It was this process that created the brilliant finish on the post card. You were able to carefully peel of the emulsion surface and the printed image stayed with the emulsion and looked like a transparency. On one occasion I was involved in machining a special fixture to mount on a Jeep to hold the Camera and telephoto Lens which was used by Mr Hinde when he was in Africa.Mr Hinde a physical disability that never spotted him doing fantastic work.
This made me search for George Watt Ltd and found this image:
George Watt Limited, Engineers and Millwrights, Bridgefoot Street, 1970
This photo is from the Dublin City Photographic Collection. This unique collection is an educational resource and provides a basis for original research on the history of Dublin in the second half of the twentieth century.
Glyn emailed us this:
Amazingly enough I find that I appear in one of the John Hinde postcards. This was taken sometime in the 1960s, I was out with a friend and on sitting on the wall overlooking the Thames, and we were approached by a man who asked if we minded if he took a photo of us, and the Houses of Parliament.
I never thought any more of it, but around 1974 my girlfriend, now my wife, came across this in a card shop, she recognised me in it, I'm the one on the right with my foot on the wall.
If she hadn't had the luck to come across it, and to recognise me I would never have known about it.
Can you tell me at all when exactly it was taken? I always thought it was taken in the early 60s.
I realise that after all this time there may not be a record of it, but I was also amazed to see it amongst the collection on your web site, it's amongst the photos numbered 33-69
I thought I had lost this, but we came across it the other day on looking through some old photos and cards.
I don't remember the photographer telling us that the photo would be used in a postcard, only that he asked us if we would mind staying still for him while he took the Photo. I don't think that the sky was that colourful! But it would have been around sunset when he took it, and you can see the time on Big Ben showing 9.20.
If my future wife had not come across it about 10 years later I would never have known it existed! I don't think anyone else would have recognised me in it.
Goes to show what surprise's life holds for you at times.
Here is the postcard:
Walter Browne emailed us this:
I came across your web site this morning. I have to say it is really very good and it brought back a lot of happy memories. When I left school my first real job was in John Hinde. I joined the company as an apprentice Planner and Platemaker just as they moved into the new production facility in Cabinteely. I remember one of my first jobs was to bring the colour seperations from John Hindes house in Dalkey and bringing them to the new premises. It was in one of the bedrooms in his Dalkey home that John Hinde and his wife started the business of printing postcards. We set up a filing system that was to expand greatly over the years. At this time we had a fantastic group of people working as a dedicated team to insure that the quality, production and service to our customers was always 100%. For many years John Hinde also printed the european edition of the Kodak calendar. The photographers working for John Hinde when I joined the company were Edmund Nagele, Elmar Ludwig, Joan Willis and of course John Hinde himself. I had 16 fantastic years working in Cabinteely before moving on to further my career within the printing industry in which I am still employed.
Rosie Pernet told us this:
Jim Day sent us this:
I read the journal with great interest and thought I would share my families experience with you. My father, Graham Day and my mother, Annie lived in Bristol where he worked for a printing company called Bennett Brothers. In 1966, when I was five years old and my sister, Helen was three, he announced that he had a new job and we were going to move to Ireland working for a company called John Hinde. In fact he was hired as the Production Manager in the Cabinteely factory. Later, I remember him telling me that he was moving because the quality of John Hinde postcards was so good that they were putting all of the other postcard and printing companies out of business.
When we first moved to Ireland, we had to move to a caravan site in Shankhill until our house in Bray was ready. This was early 1966 and before the "troubles" really started in Northern Ireland. Shortly after we moved to Ireland, the IRA blew up Nelson's Pillar in O'Connell Street in Dublin on the 8th March that year. My Dad pulled one of the John Hinde postcards of O'Connell Street and Nelson's pillar in and sent it to us at the caravan from work. Why he did this I do not know, however, the postcard that he wrote that day is still in my mothers possession. I have enclosed a copy, with his writing on the postcard entitled "The Day of the Big Bang".
Later that year in October 1966, marked the 10th Anniversary of John Hinde, and the Irish Times did a big feature on the company. a special 10th Anniversary Exhibition was set up at the Intercontinental Hotel in Dublin for invited guests. The articles from that feature are included and from reading those articles, you can see how the obsessive attention to detail from the top of the company down drove the high quality. Although this is very common now, it was very uncommon at the time, and I believe kept John Hinde ahead of the competition with regard to quality and attention to detail. What is also worth noting is that way before the Celtic Tiger Economy, here was a company whose success was driven, not just by domestic Irish and British Markets, but worldwide. The success of the company was driven by it's exports. It also was not just postcards, the quality produced by the factory was so good, that none other than Kodak commissioned them to manufacture their calendar, year on year. Also included in the Irish Times article is an interesting article on John Hinde's wife Jutta including the story of them meeting for the first time while they both worked for Chipperfields circus, he as publicity manager, she as a trapeze artist. Their first meeting involved her landing at his feet having fallen from the trapeze and breaking her arm. Their first conversation involved him having to call her an ambulance.
I do not remember the all of the photographers that well, apart from Joan Willis. She used to babysit for myself and my sister and at one time she even took some family photos of the four of us. What was interesting about those pictures that she took was that she asked my mother and father to put on their Aran sweaters. Given the importance of the iconic Aran sweater in John Hinde postcards, you might conclude that she had a supply of Aran sweaters in the boot of her car for any occasion when they might be needed. However, these were our own and in fact fit quite well!. The truth also was that as a seven year old, I also had a huge crush on Joan Willis! It really is funny the things you remember from your childhood.
Caption: Jim Day on the right, with his father, mother and sister.
My mother also remembers Edmund Nagele coming to visit us at our house in Bray over the Christmas holiday one year and remarking on the smell of the peat fire we had burning.
My father loved working for John Hinde, and there was a great family atmosphere at the factory. They had enough land at the factory to convert some of it into a football pitch, albeit one with a devastating slope downhill. The factory football team was John Hinde Rangers and was trained by my father who had been a PT instructor for many years while serving in the British Army. I enclose some pictures of the football team.
Those pictures in the white shorts are from the late 60's, perhaps 1968
or 69, while the picture taken in the dark shorts are most likely from
the 1971 or 1972. It was interesting seeing the change in hairstyles
from the 60's to the 70's.
John Hinde also had a strong sense of community in Cabinteely and again the football pitch was utilised for a big annual 7-a-side competition that had as many as eighty local teams competing for the 25 pound, and in later years 50 pound first prize. As a small footnote to the final, two teams of local schoolboys played an exhibition game, with the team that I played for, the Celtic All-Stars running out the winners. I even scored a goal that day and I do remember a lap of honour that we took in front of a sizeable crowd waiting for the 7-a-side final.
In 1972, my fathers car came off second best in an altercation with a Dublin Bay Gas Company lorry. While the insurance took forever to get fixed out, John Hinde again came to the rescue, and my Dad was allowed to borrow the smaller of the two John Hinde vans. I remember many trips to Brittas Bay that summer in that van, while my sister and I sat on two small picnic chairs sliding backwards and forwards in the van with our dog and several Tupperware boxes of ham sandwiches. The van was cool to me as it was a Ford Escort and one step from being an Escort Mexico rally car, instead of our rather vintage Wolseley 1500. I was sorry to see the Wolseley return. My first "proper" job was working at John Hinde in the summer holidays. I was paid the princely sum of seven pounds per week to help keep the clean and to move the raw materials in and the finished products out. I remember well that that particular year the Kodak calendar consisted of fifty two pictures, one for each week of the year. There were problems with the calendar and they were well behind schedule. I and many others, all lent a helping hand, walking around a very large table with fifty two different stacks of pictures on it. As we walked around, we would take one picture from each stack and by the time we had completed a full circle, a calendar had been made. Despite all of the problems, the calendar went out on schedule.
Shortly after that, the company was sold to Waterford Glass. Whether this was the reason or not I do not know, but things began to change. My father was not quite as happy and decided to leave within a couple of years of the take over. Shortly afterwards, we returned to the UK and moved to Scotland where my mother still lives in Inverkip after my father passed away in 2000.
I live in Singapore now with my wife, and have no idea what possessed me to Google "John Hinde Cabinteely" just over a week ago, For whatever reason, I did and the search for stories, photos and documents has been a wonderful trip down memory lane for myself, my mother and sister. I hope these recollections are useful to you and wish you great success with the exhibition. They were very happy times, not just for me and my family, but all of the John Hinde community in Cabinteely.
I realise that the photographs of the newspaper clippings and photos are not up to John Hinde's standards, but my mother would be willing to send them to you if their safe return could be guaranteed.
Jim Day (and scorer of one of the five goals that great day)
John Hinde Rangers, with Jim Day's father on left, approx. 1960s, above
John Hinde Rangers, with Jim Day's father on left, approx. 1970s, above
Above and below: article in the Irish Times, October 1966, to celebrate John Hinde Ltd's 10th anniversary. There was also an exhibition also celebrating the 10th anniversary of the company at the Intercontinental Hotel, in Dublin, 'John Hinde story'. To read the articles, if you click on the pictures it will open a pdf of the article in a new window.