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tv   We Are England  BBC News  March 26, 2022 4:30am-5:01am GMT

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this is bbc news. the headlines: russia has signalled a shift in its military strategy towards the ukraine invasion — narrowing its focus to the east of the country. moscow says the "first stage" of its campaign is over and it will now focus on the disputed donbass region. western officials say it's a sign of failure. in the south of the country there are fears of starvation in the besieged port city of mariupol as hundreds queued for food and water. authorities are hoping russian occupiers will allow un vehicles to bring in badly needed food and medicines. taylor hawkins — the drummer of the rock band, the foo fighters has died at the age of 50. he was found unresponsive in his hotel room in colombia where the band are on tour. hawkins joined the band in 1997 after plating drums
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for alanis morissette. now on bbc news: we are england. when i came in this factory, i was absolutely gobsmacked at what everyone was doing, how loud it was, crazy. it's nice when you see the finished product coming off the line. you see celebrities in them and you think we've made them.
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i've been here about nearly 41 years. probably spent more time here than at home. me sister only works down the bottom of the line. she puts your pockets on, me sister. me niece danielle works in the warehouse. daughter georgia works over there. people say, why don't you go to london? and i said i wouldn't give up my geordie girls, i really wouldn't. they are fantastic. you know now that the clothing trade has gone in this area,
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and it's not like it was years and years ago. it's something that'll disappear and you'll not be able to get it back. i've definitely got the hardestjob. well, i wouldn't say that. are you coming for tea tonight? yes, i think i am, yes. yeah, we'll walk the dog, won't we? i'm going to text dad and tell him to get me washing line or even grab it for us. i get a text message every day at like seven minutes past seven saying that she's on the bridge and she'll be like literally in me street.
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she's just me best friend. she's always at my house, i'm always at her house, constantly together, even when we're at work, can't get away from her. do i have to say this on camera? no, georgia's lovely, she's a good worker, a hard worker. she is she's a lovely girl and i'm notjust saying it cos she's me daughter, she's me best friend as well. when i came in this factory, i was absolutely gobsmacked at what everyone was doing, how loud it was, crazy. i didn't expect it and i didn't expect to be in here either. i was in college doing beauty therapy, totally different. until me mam started and she told us there was an apprentice going and i went upstairs straightaway, i've got thejob. me mam had an old singer machine at home and we used to play on that, used to sit and sew on that when we were young, but we always got wrong in case we got out fingers
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caught in the machine. i left school when i was 15. at one time, it was the thing to do. it was like men going into the ship yards when you left school cos there was that many machining factories. but i think now, i think we are the only one left. that is john barbour�*s family. that'sjohn. that is malcolm. actually, my husband looked exactly like him and my daughter looks
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exactly like him. john came from cercopershire from a middle—class family, and he wanted to go into trade. he came to newcastle because he thought that was far away from cercooperhsire. and he started in a very modest way in victorian england. he made wonderful oilskin coats. he found a location in south shields in the marketplace. he was going to sell to the fisherman, farmers, a whole range of people. well, that's the oil skin clothing. 1908, this is the first one he did. sylkoil.
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beacon. beacon is the on shore lighthouse. the beacon was on grandma barbour�*s very first jacket here. there's the beacon. i was brought up in north yorkshire. and i went down to london to do my degree, and i taught in london. and my friend was having a party in kew and who should come along after a twickenham rugby match butjohn barbour? and that's how i met him and we fell in love and got engaged and came back north. i'd never been to
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south shields before. i wondered when i came where i was coming. i consider i had five lovely years with him. and two years after we were married i had my lovely daughter helen. and then sadly we were on holiday where we spent our honeymoon in majorca and he had a brain haemorrhage and died. i was absolutely devastated. i was told immediately that he'd left his shares in barbours to me. i didn't have a second thought aboutjoining the business. he was desperately proud of it, and i had to continue that because he had loved it so much. i continue to love it.
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i still love it 50 years later. i was given this great, great challenge and that helped me. i'm not going to say it's easy — it is hard, until you get to know what you're doing. i quite like the little jobs
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better than the big jobs with like big jackets like what me mam sort of does down there. i've definitely got the hardestjob. she probably says her, does she? well, i wouldn't say that. she will! she probably will. hers is only a bit of nylon across the bottom it's nothing. i've never been taught herjob so i cannot do herjob like if she was to sit on here she wouldn't know where to start with this one. always been close to me mam, i wouldn't know what to do without me mam. best friends. see rod or michelle, going to bring you some more work over. morning, kelly, how did your birthday go, hun? all right.
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did you have a drink? we make 600 jackets a day and a total of 2,400 jackets a week. it's a lot of responsibility because you're the control of making sure this jacket comes out the way we want it to come out in perfect condition. when we first started working for the company, we were all taught quality first, your speed later. when they were trained, your quality always came first. this is the loading bay and this is the start of the process. the raw materials that come into the factory already waxed. this is your outerjacket, this is what your outer jacket is made of.
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that's your waxed cotton, this is what we're famous for. that's your check lining. this is your classic check lining, made for your classic jackets. that's your ancient check lining. this particular lining we've been using since 1998. they all get spread out on these spreaders and then further down it's the guys that's cutting them out the pieces of yourjacket. we have a lot of supervisors, a lot of training first before they do it because they tend to, you know, work in bands you know one will put on a button hole and then it'll be passed on to the next person to do the collar, that sort of thing, and they've got to work along together and if there's anybody who slows down a bit then she's
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in trouble because she's, you know, it affects everybody else along the line. these guys are really highly skilled, them knives are really sharp. right from the start, we've always cut by hand. because it was in the hands of three women, we didn't take loads out of the company, we didn't have yachts, we didn't have rolls royces, we lived fairley modestly. and i used that money for expansion for the factory. we became computerised,
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one of the first around here. and i did recruit good people, i invested in people at that time. all those things were funded by the fact that three women kept a lot of money in the business. i really think part of our success was that. i remember going to one particular exhibition in ciselle in paris and i looked around, just to see what everyone else was doing, and i came back with three new ideas. you could be here for a week, going through all these. which one's this?
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the burghley. the bedale. there's the bedale that i designed. it's the horsey one, that one. then we became a high street supplier and, you know, princess diana and all that period of the �*70s started wearing our jacket. this is your prep section, this is where your work gets prepped to go onto the production lines. right, this is georgia, georiga's making a breast pocket that goes on the inside of the jacket. 0h, georgia's good, georgia's good, she does a good job. little angel. like her mam, just gets on with it and works well.
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you don't realise how many parts of the job there actually is to the jacket. it's hard, because you've always got to keep focused, make sure there's no faults, make sure you're doing what you're doing right because if it gets all the way down there and it's a full jacket it'll end up coming all the way back up and it's not the best. all done. been here for seven years. i was an apprentice upstairs for two years, and then i came down here for like five year now. everyone on here's just like family and friends now, i know everybody. they're a bit older than me, so i call them aunties. you are with these people nine hours a day, four days a week, you do feel like family, and when one of them's hurting and one of them, you know, it does get you. i mean, i came back after losing me mam and it was so nice to be
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back with them. i didn't know any of these girls here when i came here and i've made a lot of friends. the atmosphere is great. i mean, we work as a team together. some of the girls are going out weekends and we've made a lot of friends here. you knew you were doing something and especially for the nurses the doctors and the nurses who were on the front line, it was lovely. it had the proper cuffs on, it was the proper fabric, it was all bound, it had tartan binding on it, there wasn't a raw edge in sight, we took some pride in doing it, was absolutely fantastic. i was at the hospital a couple of weeks ago and the nurse asked what we did for a living. and she went, did
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you make the ppe? and we were like, yes, and she went, oh, we fought over yours, she says, thank you so much. especially when you seen them on the telly and you thought, we made those. and they made thousands in the end, about 50,000, the first 1,500 went to the rvi here in newcastle and then they continued to do them relentlessly. a geordie girl is a very special person, they have they've got great sustainability they're tough and dependable. and we were just so proud of doing things, it was our way of giving something back. so now we're going to move on from your prep section
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and we're going to move on to the line. the jacket gets put onto the table in all your different components and then it walks down the line into like a u shape and then your finished jacket comes off at the end of the line. maria's a good worker, reliable. janice is a good listener. you can see by the speed
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and the experience she's got there how good she's putting them nylons on. i've been here eight year now. i work on the two backs and the fronts. this is your nylon that goes on the bottom of yourjacket. and this is your top half of your front, so when you put this in you end up with that. and then i turn around and i do the collar tabs, making and attaching the collar tabs, and i make the small wing cuffs. i've got to do 162 a day, so this i do 162 of these, 162 of them, and 162 of them. it is a lot, it is a lot, yeah. it's nice when you see
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the finished product come off the line or you see them hanging up and you see celebrities in them and you think, we've made them, we've done them, we are proud. too many people throw things away. but if you love yourjacket, like, obviously this jacket has had a lot of love over its a0 odd years. they don't want to throw them away, they want them back.
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so these are just the jackets that's we've had sent in by our customers. they're sent in for various of reasons, it could be for a reproof, a clean, repairs. i would say, ooh, we've probably got about, i would say, about 700 jackets here at the moment. then when they're paid for they get released and put through to our prep section.
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these here these are all the studs, different kids of studs for different designs on the jackets. that's a wool lining, very strong, it's just really nice to work with. that's me favourite one. this isjoyce, our quality inspector. joyce is going to check the jacket up for us at the end of the line before it finally gets put into a bag and we get it shipped out the door. i've been here about nearly 41 years, but if i included when i come here when i was 16, had the children, it would have been 45 years nearly. probably spent more time here than at home. it's a nice family business, all the girls and that are friendly and that, we're all a team. i've been around here since i was born, literally, grown up in shields, love the place. people from south shields are a really proud bunch. it's a really enjoyable place to live and the vast majority of people who work here are from shields. you know, now that the clothing trade has gone in this area, it's not like it was years
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and years ago. it's a big manufacturing firm, it's a good firm to work for. i mean, it's the bread and butterfor everybody as well, isn't it? we employ so many people. people say, why don't you go to london? and i said, i wouldn't give up my geordie girls, i really wouldn't, they are fantastic. 25 years, 30 years, a0 years. i can't tell you how many people have worked that number of, you know, for a long, long long, long time because they love it. we wouldn't work anywhere else. dame margaret! it started here and it's very important that it stays here.
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this is your finaljackets. it's been through all your processes, it's now been labelled and folded and ready to go to the warehouse. it's made in south shields and can be sent anywhere in the world. and it's quite satisfying, seeing the end product when it's come from just rolls of fabric into a made—upjacket. great feeling. pride. on a night—time, we come out me and me sister come out wait for georgia, walk home and georgia goes her way and we go ours. off we go home, and they get
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raging because i leave them first and they've got further to walk. we clear our air, have a good chat, have a laugh or if we're feeling down we'll have a cry or we'll have a moan and it's just us three being us three going to work and coming home.
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hello there. there's going to be some major changes next week, and things could look a little different on sunday across some parts of the country. but on saturday, we've got more of the same. it's going to be a cold start, but there will be plenty of warm sunshine. temperatures early on saturday could be close to freezing in some rural areas. it'll warm up quickly. any mist and fog in northern ireland will lift. it will stay quite cloudy in the far north of scotland. 0therwise lots of sunshine, just a bit of fairweather cloud once again and the winds will be light. and temperatures on saturday similar to what we had on friday, could again make 19—20 degrees in some northern parts of england. a reminder that on saturday night, the clocks spring forward by one hour as we move into british summer time. so, an hour less in bed. for many people waking up across the eastern side of england, it could be a cloudy start, though, on sunday.
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we've still got high pressure around, but there's more cloud coming in off the north sea. it could be quite low cloud, misty as well. it means it's going to be a mild start to sunday across eastern parts of the uk. a little bit chillier further west. there's the cloud that we've got across eastern areas. it will tend to filter its way through the midlands towards east wales. some of that cloud could linger all day through parts of the midlands, around some eastern coasts of england, but for many, i think the sunshine will come through. it may not be quite as warm as it has been of late. more sunshine, though, further north for scotland and northern ireland, so again here, temperatures are likely to reach 17 degrees or so. major changes, though, heading into next week. high pressure that's brought the fine, warm weather is no more. pressure�*s going to be dropping. and at the same time, we're going to find more cloud moving in as well. not everywhere, mind you. and many places are still going to be dry even though pressure is falling, but we could see some rain across these central areas. north and south of that, though, i think we are likely to find some sunshine. and the temperatures are still reasonable for this time of the year.
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16 degrees in the sunshine, won't feel too bad at all. but it is a downward trend, really, through next week. not only will see more cloud and an increasing chance of getting some rain, those temperatures are really going to be dropping away as well. so, rather than being warmer than average, it will get colder than average, especially later on next week as the wind changes to more of a northerly. that brings the colder air, and across some northern parts of the uk, it could even bring some snow.
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welcome to bbc news. i'm nuala mcgovern. our top stories: russia signals a shift in its military strategy in the war, narrowing its focus to the east of the country. ukrainian troops successfully counter attack around the capital kyiv — destroyed russian tanks are seen on the road north of the capital. in the south of the country, there are fears —— ukrainian troops have achieved this against a much lather to make larger army, a more powerful army. and they are notjust resisting but launching a counter—attack. in the south of the country, there are fears of starvation in the beseiged city of mariupol as hundreds queue for food and water amid the devastation. and in other news, taylor hawkins, the drummer with the rock band
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the foo fighters, has died at the age of 50.


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