Family so important as Ann reflects on 100 years and fond Filton memories
Filton resident Ann reaches milestone
by Shane Gibson
On December 26 2019, Ann Bateman reached 100 years of age. Sixty of those years were spent living and working in Filton.
Ann has seen the passing of her two late husbands and the growth of her family with children, grand children and great grand children, and she is particularly fond of the youngest member of the family, two-year-old Max.
She has also been a member of the Filton Chest and Heart charity for several years.
Discussing the changes that she has witnessed in her time spent in Filton, Ann said: “The planes have stopped coming over.”
For Ann this is of significance as Ann and every member of her family had worked for BAC.
Most memorable for her was a gift that put a bow around her relationship with the aeronautical industry and Filton, when Ann and her late husband were passengers on the very last Concorde flight.
After work was over Ann and her friends loved to dance in the local clubs. “Ballroom, foxtrot, that type of dancing, We’d go anywhere that was open.”
Quite a different experience from her first job in the Yorkshire Wool Mills, working from the age of 14.
“I worked on the spinners.” Ann said. “We couldn’t afford much after work, only getting half a crown a week (equivalent to today's 25p).” .
During the war Ann was in munitions, working 12 hour shifts. Afterwards, life was tough.
She said: “We came to Filton after the plane factories closed down, first in Yorkshire and then Portsmouth.”
Looking back at her life, Ann has no regrets and although she is no longer able to walk outside, she still knits and is visited daily by her daughter, Anne and other members of her family whom she sees as her greatest achievement.
When discussing disappointments in life, Ann said “Weston-super-Mare. But perhaps we were spoiled and expected too much after living in Portsmouth.”
Ann is greatly appreciated by her family, always making sure that she receives both Christmas and birthday gifts each year, but for Ann, the gift is simply being with them.
As my conversation with Ann came to an end I asked if she had been happy in Filton. She spoke confidently, simply saying "Yes I have."