Late On Monday
Lace-making was a hugely important industry in Nottingham
during the 20th century, employing thousands of local
people in hundreds of factories across the city. In
Don’t Be Late On Monday Mark Ashfield
tells the story of the people who worked at just one
of these factories, drawing on his long career in
lace-making that lasted from 1936 until 1984, with
a break of just four and a half years during World
With humour, affection, and an eye for the
details that characterised life in Nottingham in years
gone by, the author recalls day-to-day episodes from
the factory to give an accurate picture of a vanished
way of life. He tells of company excursions by train
to the seaside, which were a highlight of the year
for the hard-working employees, and remembers such
moments as the day the boss lost the keys to the safe
and had to call a locksmith to break into it so that
he could pay the wages, and the day the pigeon-catchers
came to fill sacks with roosting birds from the rafters
of the building, to stop them damaging the slates.
But most of all the book is a tribute to the remarkable
people, from the office boy to the company owner,
who laboured in the lace trade and added to the reputation
of the once-great industry.
This delightful book is a fascinating memoir of an
industry that was once at the heart of life in Nottingham.
Mark Ashfield’s lively and engaging account
is sure to appeal to anyone with an interest in the
history of the city, its industry and its people.