Jensen Factory postcard

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PaulMcElhinney
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Jensen Factory postcard

Post by PaulMcElhinney »

Image

I came across this yesterday whilst browsing the internet, I thought others might like it.
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by PaulMcElhinney »

Does anyone know whether this picture shows the entire factory ie is everything off camera to the left not part of the factory?
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by newfiegt »

Now we really know what finished Jensen, too much time chatting on the 10 phone lines.



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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by Keith »

For such a large organisation, only 10 phone lines?

But this is something I've been planning to do, and Paul's image (above) has made me do it:

(This is the current image from Google Maps)


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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by aslef »

Great photo of the Factory,down in the bottom left hand corner appears to be the office block often seen in press pictures/brochures associated with Interceptor & Healey era?
I have got an old factory plan stashed away somewhere so over the Xmas break will cross reference it to the photo and hopefully be able to detail the land to the left of the picture.
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by Denis »

They had at least 130 000 square meters of the premises.

Taking in consideration their output 1000 cars per year to rent this property at todays price (10 pounds, as it probably will cost today) it will make appr. 15 000 pounds of rental payment per one car produced.
If you consider, that there is been 1800 workers (saw this number in book) and average expense (salary + taxes) appr 50 000 pounds per year, it will make additional 90 000 pounds of costs per one car.

Then parts, financial costs, marketing, research and development and much more...


Just interesting, what would be Interceptor price with inflational adjustment?
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by Steve Payne »

Denis wrote:Just interesting, what would be Interceptor price with inflational adjustment?
Probably the easiest to do this would be compare it with something else available at the same time.

The top model Ford Cortina in 1973 was about £1300, the top model Mondeo is now £28000 .

My Interceptor was just over £7000 in 1973 so by using the same multiplyer that would make it just over £150000.

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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by Denis »

I guess to make any profit in line with today`s cost they should sell their cars at least at the twice higher price.
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by ajm541s »

Taking in consideration their output 1000 cars per year to rent this property at todays price (10 pounds, as it probably will cost today) it will make appr. 15 000 pounds of rental payment per one car produced.

Unless anyone knows different, I think the photograph shows the factory not long after Jensen Motors moved their from their other factories in about 1953. The move was made due to the contract to build Austin Healey bodies for BMC. Around 70,000 of these were made between 1953 and 1967. Over the same period other contracts with Volvo, Rootes and others presents a somewhat different picture than Denis suggests.
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by Denis »

Tony, is this possible to tell little bit more about this?
How was the production process organised, which tools, machinery etc use the plant? Which was corporate social life in the company (corporate newspapers, events, stimulation programs, personal policy) etc?

Its all very interesting I tnink not only for me but for many other people too.
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by Keith »

Denis wrote:How was the production process organised, which tools, machinery etc use the plant? Which was corporate social life in the company (corporate newspapers, events, stimulation programs, personal policy) etc?

I think Tony will be pushing it to answer that lot in an couple of forum messages! :D
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by taximan »

Bottom left of postcard states NORCROS GROUP, doesn't this date the picture?
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by ajm541s »

Denis, much too much to even try, as Keith said. Best you look at Regalia list of Jensen Motors History books and add them to your library.

Shaun, the Norcros logo dates the postcard, not the date of the picture which I am fairly sure is earlier than their take over in 1959. The picture shows the full extent of the site, which did not extend further to the left than the trailer with car bodies on it, bottom left. Austin Healey bodies?

The admin block, with the Jensen Motors Ltd sign, housed Md's office and boardroom, Company Secy's office and the sales and sales promotion depts. Above were the two management canteens and director's dining room, where visitors would be entertained. Those were the (bad) old days when the shop floor and management were kept seperate other than by occasional visits down the production line. Duerr changed this, by being the first in to the factory in the morning, well last to leave, and by learning the names of all the production workers and most of their families within the first few months of becoming MD. Two management canteens became one, but the directors/visitors dining room stayed for obvious reasons.

Behind the admin block is the Austin Healey production line, later to be the Interceptor/FF lines. The building nearest the canal is where the chassis jigs were located, and moving towards the admin block were the body in white lines (where the basic body panels were attached to the chassis and lead loaded. Opposite is the paint shop and fibreglass workshop from which the bodies returned to be trimmed and finally motorised. Where Denis remarks hit home in terms of the size of the site is that by December 1967 all that space was devoted to building 3 /4 Interceptors/FFs per week! With about 1200 employees! This is where Norcros called in management consultants Booze Allen and Hamilton to sort it all out, resulting in the appointment of Carl Duerr. Among many suggestions, Booze Allen recommended the sacking of the entire Sales Department, fortunately ignored by Duerr! One reason for their recommendation, I think, was their request for the sales office (me!) to provide the total market for luxury cars likely to be alternatives choices to Jensens. I had just joined from BMC Marketing Research, and my lat work there was to examin the market for 3 litre cars in the UK. Having this still at my fingertips, so to speak, I came up with the figure of 15 thousand per year for all cars Jaguar and upwards. I was told to go away and prove it, and so back tracked over the figures with an update for the year since I had done the work. Unfortunately the registration figures for imports were always about six months behind the others, so I had to double up the previous six months for this small sector to get an average. The result came to exactly 14,998, and you will not be surprised to learn that these were totally derided by Booze Allen as being a fix!
To the right of the admin block, across the gap, was the Sunbeam Tiger production line and, earlier, the Volvo line, and of course the 541 and CV8 production buildings.
What the large hole with potential building works at the top right is, I do not know, but I think it was later used for works parking and eventually Jensen Parts and Service??

PS I forgot to say that also on the floor above the sales office in the admin building was the home of the IBM3 computer, installed I think around 1972/3, which took the space of several Victorian style wardrobes! And probably with the computing power of an Amstrad !
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by PaulMcElhinney »

Denis, Calver's "All the Models" contains much of the historical information that you seek.
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Re: Jensen Factory postcard

Post by PaulMcElhinney »

Tony,

Thank you once again for an interesting and insightful reflection of times in Kelvin Way "back in the day."

Regards,

Paul.
Paul McElhinney - Mk I 115/3309 in Positano yellow, FF Mk II 127/289.
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