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full scope of the company's activities as each of the departments was more
or less self-contained. Examples of different types of work were chosen,
the whole being ingeniously knitted together in the most attractive form.|
With each succeeding year, the value of Enfield
with its wide margin for expansion grew more evident. In 1931, it was
again necessary to extend the buildings.
Seven years later further expansion became advisable.
The Munich Pact had been signed and war was in the air. In 1936, an engineer
from the War Office had surveyed the works in order to assess their war
production potentiality. It was made clear that should an emergency arise
the company would be given orders as to what to do and where to obtain the
material for whatever type of production was required. It was with this
possibility in mind that the directors ordered a further bay to be added
to the Enfield works. When this had been completed, the building measured
280 feet long with seven bays each 40 feet wide. An immediate advantage
of this extension was that one bay could be allocated for making concrete
pavement lights in which a brisk trade was being done. This newest branch
of manufacture, begun in a basement shop under the old Union Street works,
promised to become even more rewarding and the directors had no reason to
regret their entry into this field.
Throughout the fateful year, 1939, a sinister
aspect was visible at the works in the construction of strong concrete
underground air raid shelters sufficient to accommodate all the workers.
Normal peace-time production was being supplemented to an increasing
extent by orders for gas-proof and other steel doors for hangars, air
raid shelters and other buildings. Ordnance depots and mobilisation
centres were also requiring large quantities of roof glazing and lantern
Whether these would ever be needed hung as yet in
the balance. While the year grew older, the scales of history hovered
nervously between peace and war until the true intentions of the German
dictator were revealed by the ruthless assault upon Poland.