30/09/2013 Inside Out Yorkshire and Lincolnshire


30/09/2013

The workers tackling bosses who do not pay the minimum wage. The threat to a vital part of Lincolnshire's heritage. And revisiting Billy Liar's Bradford.


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Out. Tonight we are here in Bradford. This week, standing up for

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their rights. We need the employees taking on the employers failing to

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pay the minimum wage. —— we meet them. I found it odd that it was

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only £100 per week. Also, liar—liar! One of the most famous

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films of the region reaches the grand old age of 50. And dying

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heritage, the distinctive slate roofs that may end up disappearing.

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Tomorrow is a red letter day for over 1 million people across

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Britain. That is the date when the minimum wage goes up from £6 19 to

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£6 31 an hour. But is that enough to live on? And our employers even

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paying the minimum wage? That is really good. It is dearer in ASDA.

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Meet Shirley Scott, one of Sunderland's test shoppers. She

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knows the price of everything. That is 48p cheaper. What will this

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cost? £20. It is 1957. —— £19.57. That is amazing. I added it up. You

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have to know what you are doing when you are going to feed the family. I

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am getting two for the price of one. The reason surely's specialist

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subject —— the reason May's specialist subject is shopping is

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she is on the minimum wage. She would like the race tomorrow to be

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much higher. Do employers get it? No, they do not live in our world.

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The 12p rise will not make anyone rich but it will be

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many. The North East has 71,000 people paid the adult minimum wage.

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Yorkshire and the Humber has 139,000. The highest number is in

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the North West, 171,000. It is not enough for people and the cost of

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living has gone up massively. When even more —— we need more. There is

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too much of a gap between the higher earner and the lower earner. I

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support a living wage and most employers should head that way. What

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can you do with an extra 12p? That is not going to change anyone's

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life. When the previous covenant set up the minimum wage the idea was

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that was the absolute basic and employer could pay. It was the law.

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But in the last two years, there have been no prosecutions for

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breaking the rules, so you may think that everyone is playing by the

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book. Well, let's find out. Hello, how are you? Jump in. Karen knows

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these roads near Abbeytown in Cumbria well. She used to drive a

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minibus. We would pick up disabled children and take them to school. It

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was a good job. She was offered the job by a family friend, Wallace

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Cuthbert, and was offered £80 a week. After a while things did not

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add up. So you and a flat rate, the hours went up the money didn't

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really? No. How did that compare to wage? I dig it was a lot lower. I

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worked out I should be getting £135 a week. Fed up with being exploited,

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Karen went to an employment tribunal. What happened there? You

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could not afford a solicitor. No, we went on the internet and looked at

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everything we needed to know. And he won. Yes. —— and you won. Yes macro.

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The minimum wage is a good idea but needs to be enforced. Next up, a man

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whose early business career looked very promising. David knows all

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about clinching a deal. I have six appointments from BT business

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customers. In 2004, he was voted Yorkshire's Young Apprentice of the

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Year after setting up Axis Telecom and another company, Servizon, in

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Hull. Haps learning from his own experience, employed nearly 200

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staff as apprentices. —— haps learning. I found it really odd that

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it was only £100 a week but I kept on going because they mentioned

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bonuses. Allen and Lewis were taken on as apprentices. As such, they

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work paid well below the minimum wage. They would say £100 a week is

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nothing so you need to make sales to have something to live on.

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Eventually, both of them did come into some money but only after the

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company was taken to an employment tribunal. The boss was ordered to

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pay more than £100,000 after underpaying his staff. At the time,

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I was like, oh, I have won it, but really, it was my money anyway. It

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has made me more aware of the weight employers try to cheat you out of

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money and things. It was a good learning experience. David Meyers

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also declined to be interviewed but told me...

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There is one thing all these people have in common. Although the

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employers broke the law, the cases were brought in employment tribunal

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's, not the criminal courts. So far that means there have only been

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eight prosecutions in England for nonpayment since the minimum wage

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was introduced and none in the last two years. Her Majesty 's Revenue

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and Customs police the system, so are they tough enough? A couple of

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years ago we tried to use Revenue and Customs to enforce the minimum

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wage but we found out that they were cumbersome, time—consuming, slow.

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They were reluctant to enforce it, even. Our clients found that Revenue

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and Customs were not doing anything. So we chose to go down the tribunal

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route. But that is going to get harder. Six months ago, the

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Government scrapped legal aid for employment advice, and there is

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more. Many people will now have to pay a listing fee at an employment

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tribunal. You are depicting and you have to pay just to have your case

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heard. It is absurd. —— you are the victim. And there is no guarantee

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that even if they win the case that they will get the tribunal feedback.

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So who is in charge? I am off to see Vince cable, the Business Secretary

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and the man who has promised action. People who... People on minimum wage

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are not going to be able to afford the £100 just to get to tribunal. We

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are looking at how we can toughen up processes to make it easier for the

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authorities to take action. It strikes me that for an employer who

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wants to get around the minimum wage it is fairly easy, because the finds

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are not great and the person earning below minimum wage cannot afford to

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take it any further. That is why I have been trying to move the system

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forward and in future, naming forward and in future, naming and

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shaming will be a much bigger part of the action. So we will see

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change? Oh, yes. So if an employment law firm in Liverpool is turning

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away hundreds of people, but does tell you there was a problem? If

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that is the case, why don't they bring it to the Revenue and Customs

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or to me on and I will try to ensure more action is taken? Programme is

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half an hour. Based on your salary, you have earned £32,000 during our

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programme. Someone on the minimum wage has earned just over £3. Is

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that fair? No, there are differentials. I certainly want to

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see upward movement in the minimum wage but we do not at the same time

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want to bring so much pressure on small firms, some of which have just

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survived through this very difficult period, and pitched them out of

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work. Last week the Labour Party said it would increase the £5,000

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fine for firms not paying minimum wage to £50,000. Vince Cable did not

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promised he would follow suit but he said we would see tougher action

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against rogue employers in future. If you have any views on that story

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or you know a story we should be covering, please contact us.

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You can do so via Facebook or Twitter. Coming up: A dying art. The

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distinctive slate roofs which could become a rarity in Lincolnshire.

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This year sees the 50th anniversary of one of the best movies ever made

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in Yorkshire. Filmed right here in Bradford, it starred Tom Courtenay

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and an up—and—coming actress at the time, Julie Christie, and it paints

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a picture of Bradford when the 1960s were just getting into full swing.

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Up you can't beat a good film, can you? And this is one of the best. It

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was made 50 years ago in Yorkshire. To fully understand the impact Billy

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Liar had, I am going to take you back to 19 six D3. The North had

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suddenly become fashionable. For a lot of people, this was the year the

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60s began. 50 years ago, Bradford was the

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backdrop for a film which told the story of Billy Fisher — an office

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boy for a local undertaker who escapes into a fantasy world far

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away from his everyday life. Billy was played by a young actor from

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Hull, Tom Courtenay. For me, it was the boy, because I was that. I was

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very lucky. It was very personal to me. The script was written by two

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writers from Leeds, Keith Waterhouse and Willis Hall. And the whole film

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was rooted in the West Riding. The film—makers came here to Bradford.

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It was a city that was starting to look very different, and social

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attitudes were about to change as well. Times were changing, and Billy

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Liar's Yorkshire locations showed how the film industry was adapting

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too. Billy Liar very much was a movie that was made on location. It

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proved to be bold that you could make it outside, outside of London,

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in the provinces. It is also a time capsule. It shows a Bradford that

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does not exist any more. It shows the Victorian architecture that made

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the city what it was has been swept away. In many ways, in the 50 years

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since the movie was finished and filmed here, the city has changed

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absolutely. In 1963, Helen Fraser was a young actress straight out of

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drama school. She got the part of Barbara, who wants to marry Billy

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and settle down. Billy? It was very exciting, my first big film, and

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Bradford is not like it was today. It was a very noisy city, and we

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used a lot of it for the locations, including the street. Sometimes I

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think you are avoiding me. We are supposed to be in gauge. A lot of

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young men saw themselves in billy. Battalion excavation mark A section

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of the film was shot in Leeds — a victory procession through a

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demolition site in Armley. Amateur cameraman David Chapman filmed the

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sequence being shot, in a slum clearance area where terraces of

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back to back houses were being pulled down. It was very busy. There

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was a tremendous number of people there, and really quite exciting.

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Chapman got easy access to Tom Courtenay, as well as Billy Liar's

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director, John Schlesinger. There he was with Tom Courtenay on this horse

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and he was asking Tom Courtenay to make some funny faces. For Rita

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Mallison and Jean Jacques, it was a taste of stardom. They were extras,

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playing women soldiers. They answered a newspaper ad for women

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who were six feet tall. But they spent most of the day hanging around

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— Tom Courtenay had the same problem. I like filming now, I

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hardly do any. I like it much better than I used to do when I was

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younger. There was a lot of waiting around, but now that is my favourite

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part. When the film was released, Rita and Jean found they weren't on

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screen for long. The first couple of times I don't think I could even see

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myself. But eventually, you pin it down. It has been a talking point

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for years. David Chapman shot another piece of Billy Liar footage

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in front of Leeds Town Hall. As Tom Courtenay reviews a parade, there's

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a dark—haired actress beside him called Topsy Jane. At the time,

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Topsy Jane was riding high. In The Loneliness of the Long Distance

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Runner, she'd worked well with Tom Courtenay. It is nice appear. Now,

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the two young stars were being reunited. What are we going to do

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when we get back to Nottingham? Do you remember an actress called Topsy

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Jane? She was an earth mother type. But, after a few weeks filming,

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Topsy Jane dropped out. Topsy Jane became ill, she had a nervous

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breakdown, she had to leave the movie. And they had a real problem

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because they had to either cancel everything or refilled it. The part

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went to a newcomer who became one of the '60s' biggest stars, Julie

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Christie. Sections of Billy Liar had to be re—shot. Sometimes the gaps

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still show. When Julie Christie's character first arrives in Bradford,

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there's snow on the ground. But she's greeted by Courtenay in

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brilliant sunshine. You've got Julie Christie playing Liz, who

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personifies the swinging 60s. The 60s with a decade of the pill,

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burning your bra, sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll. As soon as she is on

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screen, she lifts it to another level. What was your first reaction

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when you heard you had been awarded the winner? I don't know what

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happened, I had a blackout from the moment I heard Christie. Within

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three years, Christie would win an Oscar for her role in the film

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Darling, also directed by John Schlesinger. Topsy Jane never made

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another movie. If Julie Christie was the swinging '60s, Helen Fraser's

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character came from a different era. In Undercliffe Cemetery, Billy tried

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to talk their relationship through. I know what you mean, we must be

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patient. We would only regret it. Just have one more energy tablet.

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She was rather old—fashioned but she had the right ideas and she longed

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for a little cottage in the country. She was not your archetypal 60s rock

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chick, was she? No. There were parts in the film, they were a bit saucy.

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The fantasy scenes. Billy kept having dreams. We could have... One

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of the dreams was what he would like Barbara to be really like. I was

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measured for a black lace corset and a negligee and I had to walk towards

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swinging an orange on a ribbon. I had to shoot it three times because

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I could not be sexy enough. I was such an innocent little girl! 50

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years on, Billy Liar is still part of some people's lives. Billy's home

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is a real house, in a real street. And it's in Baildon. Its owners are

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proud that their home was part of the film. I have got to ask, do you

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like the film? I love it. We have got the film, I have been to the

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cinema to see it. That is one of the reasons I wanted the house. Your

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custodians of a little piece of British film history, aren't you? It

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is nice that you are maintaining a bit of history. We are maintaining a

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few things like the wallpaper, we have got 50—year—old wallpaper. It

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still looks really good. Do you make them sit and watch Billy liar when

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people come round? It is compulsory, they have to watch it.

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So that's Billy Liar. A film Yorkshire can be proud of — with a

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lot of happy memories. Here in Bradford's Little Germany,

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many of these 19th—century warehouses made from stone, have

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been preserved and restored in recent years. But over in rural

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Lincolnshire, there is a distinctive slate roofing material which is in

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danger of dying out completely. We have been finding out more.

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As someone who is passionate about our heritage, I have always felt you

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should be able to stand anywhere in the country and know what part of

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Britain you are in. And where Cambridgeshire, Northamptonshire and

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Lincolnshire and Rutland converge, you can do just that. It is the

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stone buildings that make this distinctive honey coloured

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landscape. I just love the building materials around here, that golden

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yellow limestone. Look at the roof, organic, natural looking. It really

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blends into the landscape. The distinctive stone slate used to make

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these routes, it is only found around here. This is the village

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that gives it its name, Collyweston. But the unique character that

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Collyweston slate gives the local buildings is at risk. And with it,

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the extraordinary heritage that has gone to make this area so special.

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This is the type of stone that goes to make Collyweston slate. It is

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just wonderful, look at the colour variation. It is really

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fine—grained, it has got silica sand and it. Really superb, hard wearing

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stuff. This stone is such a perfect roofing material that this was once

:21:31.:21:36.

home to a thriving mining industry. Hundreds of men would split their

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time between farming in the summer and mining in the winter. A mine

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shaft in the middle of an industrial estate. It is getting cold, from

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this height down, it is getting really cold. I am on my way down to

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meet mine owner and Slater Claude Smith. Follow me. This is the

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entrance to a closed slate mine. This is incredible, I didn't expect

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anything like this. This mine opened in 1846 and spreads out beneath the

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entire industry state. The scene of Collyweston stone is not even high

:22:20.:22:25.

enough for me to stand up in. What we are standing on is quite sandy,

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and it starts above this and goes up to how high? So that is the top of

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it? That's all it is. He showed me how the stone is mind through brute

:22:44.:22:48.

force coupled with an intimate knowledge of the stone, including

:22:48.:22:53.

the peculiar sound can make. So what about this thing I can read about

:22:53.:22:57.

that Mac this thing I have read about it clicking or talking. They

:22:57.:23:05.

used to say it talk to you. You are perfectly safe. It is estimated that

:23:05.:23:12.

there is enough Collyweston stone in this mine to roof 3000 houses. No

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new slate has been produced here for decades, however. The mines had all

:23:19.:23:24.

fallen into disuse by the late 1970s. They would need massive

:23:24.:23:27.

investment to bring them back into production. That lack of new slate

:23:27.:23:33.

means there is a limited supply for new buildings and repairs. Recycled

:23:33.:23:38.

slate, salvaged from demolished buildings, is used. But this supply

:23:38.:23:42.

is dwindling so there is a real danger that people will be forced to

:23:42.:23:48.

reroof with foreign materials. Here is a classic example, a lovely old

:23:48.:23:53.

barn, maybe 18th century. At some point in the past, they smack slate

:23:53.:24:00.

roof has been slipped —— stripped. You might think roofing materials

:24:00.:24:05.

are not important, but if we lose these local distinctions, everywhere

:24:05.:24:08.

just begins to look the same. We lose the skills to maintain the

:24:08.:24:12.

places we love as well. The tragedy is, when that happens, we don't just

:24:12.:24:16.

change the look of a place, we change its heritage, its history

:24:16.:24:20.

will stop the story of the miners and the slaters who built places

:24:20.:24:27.

like this. This man knows the problem only too

:24:27.:24:31.

well. He is one of an increasingly rare bleed, —— increasingly rare

:24:31.:24:38.

bleed, —— increasingly rare breed. This piece of log would have been

:24:38.:24:44.

weathered and if you look closely, you can see all the veins in the log

:24:44.:24:46.

there. chance to work on new stone like

:24:46.:24:55.

this. The biggest problem is we can't get enough new slate. If there

:24:55.:25:01.

is not enough been produced, we tend to go to reclaim. Most of it is

:25:01.:25:07.

reclaim here. We make up the shortfall is that way. We need to

:25:07.:25:12.

find a way of producing Collyweston slate again. To keep the industry

:25:12.:25:18.

going? It is not just the difficulty in mining the stone, because it

:25:18.:25:21.

might be possible to get sufficient quantities from quarries. But

:25:21.:25:25.

traditionally, once the stone was brought out, it was left outside for

:25:25.:25:29.

at least three winters so the frost could expose the natural joints.

:25:29.:25:35.

Today, that is not commercially attractive. English Heritage is

:25:35.:25:39.

working on a scientific solution. Locked away in here, we have four

:25:39.:25:44.

pallets of stone which are being artificially grown. The art —— the

:25:44.:25:51.

idea being to speed up the process. So the idea is to give nature at

:25:51.:25:59.

helping hand? Yes. The stone has been extracted from a local quarry

:25:59.:26:04.

to experiment with the idea. The stone is thoroughly saturated before

:26:04.:26:09.

going into the freezer. So how are the experiments going? I will show

:26:09.:26:21.

you over here. This is log that has been in probably once. It is all

:26:21.:26:24.

still still very thick, no noticeable

:26:24.:26:32.

heading plain showing up. If you look at the stone here, you can see

:26:32.:26:39.

very clearly that it is beginning to appear much cleaner. When we get to

:26:39.:26:44.

the slot, which has had at least three cycles, if you look at the

:26:44.:26:51.

thickness of that. So we're getting there? That's right. We have a lot

:26:51.:27:00.

of work to do. It was very successful in the lab. There is a

:27:00.:27:14.

lot more work. I hope we can find a solution to this problem, because it

:27:14.:27:18.

is absolutely unthinkable that we should lose this great tradition. I

:27:18.:27:24.

have come to meet up again with Sean, who was re—roofing are barred

:27:24.:27:32.

with Collyweston slate. This roof looks absolutely beautiful. Thank

:27:32.:27:39.

you, appreciate that. I can see how these diminishing courses work. How

:27:39.:27:44.

long does it take you to do reflect this? Two, three slaters, about six

:27:44.:27:52.

or seven weeks. We have more work going on. We have got a roof just

:27:53.:28:06.

starting that needs levels. You can have a go yourself. Can I? They sit

:28:06.:28:13.

better that way. I have got to get this right. They have got to match

:28:13.:28:20.

the bottom. Leave a little bit of a gap. Hopefully this will still be

:28:21.:28:29.

here in centuries' time. I hope they will. Let's hope so.

:28:29.:28:38.

That's all from us tonight here in Bradford. Make sure you join us next

:28:38.:28:45.

week. We will be meeting the Rugby League players suffering with health

:28:45.:28:49.

problems. Visiting an often overlooked area of the Pennines and

:28:49.:28:54.

reminding people of the super clubs of the 1960s.

:28:54.:28:59.

Toby Foster presents the stories that matter to us in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. This week, Chris Jackson meets the northern workers tackling bosses who don't pay the minimum wage, archaeologist Ben Robinson reports on the threat to a vital part of Lincolnshire's heritage and Toby Foster goes back to Billy Liar's Bradford.


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