Alan Woodier. Service: 1968 to 1975. I started my 5 year apprenticeship in 1968 after leaving Whitley Abbey School even though I lived in Allesley Park.
I wanted to be a body development engineer but the options were every other year it was body and then trim development and my year was trim so trim it was (possibly in the long run the best choice as for my sins I am still working making custom motorcycle and scooter seats).
All the apprentices I think about 30 all started in the apprentice school in banner lane for 12 months doing a mix of everything from turning to sheet metal work ( I still have the bloody great big screwdriver we made) and i did get practical apprentice of the year award and got an engraved micrometer and steel ruler (still got it in the same leather case I made for it)
I had to go to college in Birmingham (Garrets Green)on a body development course as there was no course for soft trim , I actually got a city and guilds with distinction on body development and never did any real body work only theory . We had to do 1 day and 1 evening at the college all in the one day 9am to 8pm (pub for evening meal).
After the 12 months we all split into the sections at the main plant at canley. I went into fletch south engineering development trim shop. I had to carry on going to college for 5 years even tho the apprentice ship was reduced to 4yrs so year 5 I was still going but now on full wages and a brand new triumph toledo in emerald green.
My car history whilst at Triumph first a Standard 10 which we fitted 1300 Spitfire engine, Herald gearbox and seats from the first Michelotti Stag.
Then the brand new Toledo.
Then finally a mk1 Spitfire which was fitted with a brand new 2.5 tr6 engine which had been fitted with wrong cam bought from salvage dept for the massive price of £35
I then left in 75 to go and work at Callow and Maddox (when they opened a specialist car division ).
They were the trim suppliers to Triumph
I still own a completley restored 1967 Triumph Herald convertible and still working with fabric.