December 1983 – how it all started – celebrating #30yearsinbusiness
It was 30 years ago today when I had my induction day at ITEC. It was a brand new organisation, being set up by Basildon Council and the Department for Industry, under the innovative ITEC scheme. The ITEC scheme involved the setting up across the country of several hundred Information Technology Centres under the Youth Training Scheme to train and find work in the new digital industries for unemployed young people in the District.
Basildon Council had provided the building for us, the old Nevendon Primary School in Burnt Mills Road. The building was being refurbished under a work training scheme and it wasn’t ready the day we started. I remember the corridor floor had only just been laid and it had been put down on wet cement – it’s nothing short of a miracle that this floor exists to this day!
We had no electrics, furniture or fittings. Malcolm, the ITEC Manager, brought in his deck chairs so we had something to sit on and the workman set up a light tube attached to the end of an extension lead, which we alternated between the light and the kettle!! – would this even be allowed today under current H&S laws?!
There were 6 of us and I remember we were very excited to be involved in something so new and innovative. Malcolm Bridges was the Manager, Tony Dwyer was the Deputy Manager, Paul Kench was the Electronics Trainer, Jo Bishop was the Databases/Spreadsheets Trainer, Jan Russell was the Programming Trainer and, at just 22 years of age, I was the Electronic Office Trainer, albeit I was still Wendy Peters then.
We spent the dark months of December 1983 and January 1984 getting the centre finished, receiving the deliveries of furniture for the classrooms and setting up the computers as they arrived. D-Day was February 1st and we were determined to be ready………….
2nd December 2013