1960s Romford guitar factory manager remembers lost era

THE guitar factory featured in the Pathe newsreel story in last week’s Recorder brought memories flooding back for at least one reader.

Norman Houlder was machine manager of the Burns electric guitar factory in Romford when it opened in 1963. He moved to Australia the following year.

The 77-year-old, now of Dagenham, said: “I know most of the names of the people in the film. It brings back a lot of memories. I saw people I haven’t seen for a long time in it.

“The manager was there, he’s Jack Golder in the white coat. Dougie Dunn is on the first saw. A man named Joe is working the round saw.”

The Burns factory moved to Brooklands Approach, Romford, off North Street, from Roding Valley in 1963 and had 22,500 sq ft of floor space.

Burns was bought by the Baldwin company of Cincinatti, Ohio, in 1965 and ceased production in 1970, ending major guitar production in Romford.