Windows ?

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Who2
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Windows ?

Post by Who2 »

A post Boxing day Story.
When I’m cleaning windows….

Whilst watching Salvage Hunters a favorite, they spoke of a company
with an exceptionally long name.

It bought to mind, when I worked for the Worlds largest victorian window cleaning company.
Known all over the trade as ‘The Great Ant” I then lived in Wimbledon ‘the rough end down the hill.

'The Great International Plate Glass and Window Cleaning Company of Wimbledon London'. Or ‘The Great Ant.
We held the royal Warrant of the Queen Mum, Clarence House. (The Palace's windows employ ex-coppers)

By the time I joined there were just 10 'shiners left, when in Victorian days there were once literally hundreds.
Scurrying all over London, rich peoples places and buildings like aload of ants..
For a big job, one being Zetter’s Football Pools Clerkenwell now the trendy `Zetters flash Hotel.
We all went as a crew on big jobs and always finishing by opening time, those guys could relate jokes and stories you
wouldn’t believe.

The amazing characters one met, many contracts went back years. As did the prices!

One place I did was a coffin makers, these old boys burnt coffins to keep warm, gas lighting another
was the Wimbledon Dog Track and the famous Wimbledon Theatre just at the end of my street.

London and the West End was an incredible place especially at 4am. Any day of the year!

Sometimes we would stand ‘stock-still in emptied west end famous store windows pretending
to be manikins, ladders and buckets then suddenly all move in unison to 'shock passerbys.

We would be called in monthly when the window dressers were changing the displays.
A bucket often held more than just water, we used to do Dewars Scotch Whiskey in
the Haymarket. Not that I drank whiskey.

It did not take me long to understand the object of the game was to get the client
to sign the work docket, later as I worked for myself I could earn up to £500 a week,
No small sum in those days, the money never lasted but the memories do....... 8)

"It was a toss-up twixt George Formby or Van the Man.....


Ps: I still enjoy cleaning my windows, funny that! "Happy New Year all"


"The Salvation of Mankind lies in making everything the responsibility of All"
Sophocles.
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Who2
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Re: Windows ?

Post by Who2 »

Just found this extract, I had no idea there was a Window Cleaners Magazine.. 8)

Now imagine this next company in today’s H&S environment. In 1913 the Great International Window Cleaning Co. employed over 600 window cleaners, all of them working from ladders. All of them taking huge risks at huge heights. When you take into consideration workplace mortality statistics for the UK in 2015-16, for example, where 144 workplace deaths were recorded with established H&S regulations, 37 of them as a direct result of falls from height, you have to ask yourself how many of the 600 survived back in 1913?
"The Salvation of Mankind lies in making everything the responsibility of All"
Sophocles.
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Re: Windows ?

Post by newcastle »

Interesting post Who 2.

Got me thinking….who cleans all that glass at Canary Wharf? Maybe Total Clean?

But who does The Shard? You’d definitely need a head for heights for that job!

Count me out :td

https://www.totalclean.co.uk/blog/clean ... ondon-480/
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Re: Windows ?

Post by carrie »

My Mum had a thing about window cleaners, she swore they could only clean in circles. Never get into the corners she would complain.
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Re: Windows ?

Post by Grandad »

Morning all, and a Happy and Prosperous New Year to you all.

Boring I know Newcastle but having experienced 'The View From The Shard' I can answer your question about cleaning the glass. No ladders here, just a very sophisticated cradle device....

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Grandad :gg:
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Who2
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Re: Windows ?

Post by Who2 »

I remember once cleaning a building from a cradle with an expat London 'aussie fireman.
Up at the Hanger Lane Gyratory.
As the cradle started to sway due to the wind he started to freak-out.

He told me when doing a similar job downunder, a retaining cable snapped leaving them hanging.
Similar to this:
15991

His problem was, that the news helicopters turned up before the fire brigade.... 8)

Ps: It can be pretty windy 10 floors up. 'Mind you the views are 'worth dying for..."joke!
"The Salvation of Mankind lies in making everything the responsibility of All"
Sophocles.
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carrie
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Re: Windows ?

Post by carrie »

I am sure I have heard about glass that doesn't need cleaning, self cleaning. I have no idea how it works or if it does but surely worth investing in for buildings that are sooooo high.
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