All work and no play makes Jack and dull boy.

Ted Thompson

Back in 2010, and as part of the Steelos Songs of Steel project I had the great pleasure of working camera on an interview with Ted Thompson, a former Rotherham steelworker, who was then in his 1990s and living alone in Rotherham. It was one of the most fascinating interviews I’ve ever watched and I could’ve sat and listened to Ted recall his childhood and working life long into the night. He recalled his school days with such incredible clarity, describing places in Rotherham that I could recognise (though only just recognise for the town – and the world – has moved on) and remember even his first day at work in the early 1930s, still a boy and barely out of short trousers.

I found out last week that Ted passed away recently and I was touched by a genuine sadness, both at this elderly gentleman’s end and at the loss of memory and history that he takes with him. The town where I live, that has such a rich, varied and interesting past, and how that place used to be dies a little more as the generations blink out and fade into memory themselves.

RIP Mr Thompson. It was a pleasure to have met and talked with you.


  1. Gill Shand

    Thank you so much for this lovely comment. I’ve only just read this comment but I enjoyed seeing my grandad posthumously in this video as did his great grandson. He was a great part of my life especially growing up in Rotherham before the collapse of industry.

    • kubrickslenscap

      Hi Gill, I’m so pleased you’ve found the interview. The link on my blog post didn’t seem to work but I have restored it so you can view the video on the actual blog post now. Your grandad was actually interviewed by another former Rotherham steelworker, my dad, and I can still recall the interview all of these years later. The clarity with which he spoke of the past was so engaging I could’ve listened to him all day. A lovely man. I hope this has been a lovely memory for you.

      P.S – I did check to see if I had the full, uneditted footage (called “rushes”) to send but sadly not anymore. 🙁

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