Norwich chocolate factory reunion

Former staff of Mackintosh's wages department get together.

They met up at the Assembly House in Norwich the other day, in the shadow of what is now the Chapelfield shopping centre, to remember those happy and busy days in the 1950s and 60s when around 3,000 people worked at the factory.

And they all needed paying.

In those days it was real money in brown envelopes.

The wages department, comprising of more than 20 people at one time, started working out the wages on a Monday for payment at the end of the week.

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Most people in the factory, turning out a range of household-named chocolates, worked 45 hours a week and got bonuses depending on how much chocolate they produced.

The week in the wages department started slowly and the pressure gradually built up as they worked out how much people were earning, sorted out the deductions and prepared the money.

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The reunion was organised by Deanna Durrant, formerly Bailey.

'We were friends then and we have stayed friends,' she said. 'We all look forward to these reunions.'

Around �5 a week was a good wage in those days...mind you, �5 went a long way.

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