Menu

Warning: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /home/jinnah/domains/jinnahcommunity.org.uk/public_html/components/com_k2/models/item.php on line 763

Ghulam Nabi Chouwdhary

Ghulam Nabi Chouwdhary

Retired

On my first day, the driver refused to work with me. … But many years later, they found out that Asians were very hard working, good time keepers…

Another country…

That time of year in 1961-1962 was very bad. We got our own house; no bath, and only one fire which was in the living room. There was no heating at all. It was a very hard life. We couldn’t get our food; there were no Asian shops from Colne to Preston as far as I know. As we couldn’t eat meat unless it was halal, every Saturday we went to the countryside to buy chicken; slaughter it there, clean it, put it in a bag and bring it home. That was luxury – we had a good meal at the weekend, weekdays we ate vegetables. It was a hard time but a pleasant time, busy working in the mills. The first time I applied for benefits was after my retirement in 1998.

Reflecting on challenging times…

In 1967, I saw advertisements at the bus station, jobs for conductors. I went for a test and wasn’t successful but they didn’t give a reason… Actually there were union bans. It was the General Transport Union. They’d decided not to employ any coloured people. We briefly had meetings with the councillor who came to our door from the Labour Party because it was election time, and we put questions to them, told them we had rights to get jobs and this is semi- government transport, it isn’t privately owned. There was no Race Relations Act then. They promised everyone that they would look into it. This issue also came into the media, with headlines saying, ‘race discrimination on transport’. That was difficult for the transport union. The union said they’ll have to start letting some coloured people apply, only 6%. I applied again, successfully. But staff and workers were not co-operating. They were also threatening those people who were willing to train me. I carried on through this and got the training. On my first day, the driver refused to work with me. So they had to change the driver. But many years later, they found out that Asians were very hard working, good time keepers and they added some more. I started as the first Asian conductor, first Asian driver and first Asian staff instructor in Burnley and Pendle.


Warning: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /home/jinnah/domains/jinnahcommunity.org.uk/public_html/templates/gk_rockwall/html/com_k2/templates/default/item.php on line 151
HLFHI BLK 1 burnley logo cvs logo LCC col logo trans LCOM logo uclan logo uclan logo