The archive at PK Porthcurno holds oral histories collected from those connected with Cable and Wireless. They provide first-hand accounts of life with the company, not only from the employees, but also from their families. Now for the first time these personal stories are becoming available to listen to online through the PK Online Collection (PKOC).
Patricia Bruce ‘s father John Robins worked for Cable and Wireless from 1929. She recalls her childhood, travelling with her parents around the world on ocean liners to various stations, including Ascension Island, Port Sudan, Cape Town, and Singapore. When the war came, they were no-longer allowed to travel with her father. Her father was later captured by the Japanese following the fall of Singapore during World War Two and spent three years in a Prisoner of War Camp. She talks about meeting her father at the train station once he was released.
Barbara Lever was a local Cornish girl. She talks about her experiences growing up next to the Cable and Wireless Station in Porthcurno. She remembers the Christmas parties, children from overseas staff attending the local school, and being warned by her parents not to mix with the Cable and Wireless boys (she and her sister both later married Cable and Wireless employees).
John Nash began working for Cable and Wireless in 1949. His father had also worked for the company, so John experienced travel to telegraph stations abroad as a boy. He describes training, including learning morse code, his early postings, sport and leisure, and the Exiles.
To listen to the above oral histories and more, simply visit https://pkoc.co.uk/our-collections/themes/ and select ‘Audio and Oral Histories’. In ‘Format’ select ‘born digital audio recording’ to view oral histories that have been added to PKOC so far. Further recordings will be added to PKOC over the coming year.