"Left school on Friday, started working for the Gas Board on the Monday" - readers recall their first job after school

It’s result’s week for both A-level and GCSE students, which naturally had us putting on our rose-tinted specs and reminiscing about our first jobs. Our readers’ also joined in the trip down memory lane.

Opening of the Twist Drill Training Centre, Sheffield - 29th September 1967
Opening of the Twist Drill Training Centre, Sheffield - 29th September 1967

Here are a selection of our readers first working experiences:

Paulineanne Marsden says that she “worked at Arthur Turner Gun Smiths on West Bar until i was 18 then started my nursing at Sheffield Royal Hospital on West St. in 1961”

Russell Hawley’s originally “worked on the sea fresh stall in the old Castle Market. Roy Tissingtons smaller stall.”

David Booth recalled how he had, “Started work before I left school. Now it would be illegal but Saturdays and holidays working as a labourer in small engineering shop. Pocket money, most of which went towards the family budget. We all had to chip in. Started making tea and running errands, ended up working milling machines and lathes before the age of 15. Sheffield was full of little workshops back then making almost anything you could think of.” Times certainly have changed quitea bit David.

Kathryn Atkin’s first steps into employment were tentative at best, she responded saying that it was in “Retail. Hated it, so I got a youth ops programme YOPs placement in an FE College (library asst) and I'm still here 40 years later, (albeit in totally different role/dept/location), even though I swore I would never work in an office.” How did you find office work in the end Kathryn?

Rachel Hayes "Was already working while still at school as a leisure centre attendant/pool lifeguard. Them at 18 was able to train as a swimming teacher.”

Leanne Fearn said that her “first full time job, working as an office junior in a solicitors….. 17 years later I’m still with the same firm (albeit in a different role lol)”, which was almost exactly the case for Terri Norton, who said that she “finished school on a Wednesday, started work following Monday at Keebles”. Just like Leanne, we thought you’d have at least taken the summer holidays as one last break, but good on you for going straight into work.

After leaving school at 15, Yvonne Bottom’s dad “paid for me [her] to go to Comptometer College. Then I worked in an office Arthur Balfours.”

Diane Marriott wasted no time, and she “had a job lined up before leaving school at 16 at a dental surgery as trainee dental nurse and receptionist.”

And Michael Vickers left school in “1960, 15 years old. Careers Officer says what steel works do you want to work in. Me same as my dad. That was Brown Bayley Steels in Attercliffe.”

Tracey Jackson’s first job was in “clerical for Ford Motor Co best job ever and stayed there for 22years, even though it was supposed to be a temporary job”.

Katrina Rothwell Hatfield "Left school on Friday, started working for the Gas Board on Commercial Street on the Monday.”

Finally, Frances Cross said that her first job was as the “Assistant to the Editor of the Doncaster Free Press. Great job.” That’s one of our sister titles!

It goes without saying that for school leavers’ today the experience is quite a bit different than it was only 10-15 years ago, how about you? What was your first job after leaving school?