Sales & Service
Thank you to Ed Thomson, Glamis Castle, Angus, Scotland for his
memories of work at SMT Sales & Services in Edinburgh from 1945 until 1952
when he pursued
a Military Career.
This was Ed's second job after leaving school. He lost his first
job as a decorator after a few months on discovery that he was red/green
£1:17s 6d per week
"I was about to register as
at the Shore Labour Exchange one day, when I met one of my ex-Wardie
schoolmates who told me there were vacancies with the SMT Sales
and Service at 39 Fountainbridge."
I hot footed it up there that
very day and succeeded in getting an interview with the General
Manager, Mr Cambage. I started about three days later on
My workplace was in the General Shop
on the second level, firstly dismantling salvageable parts from
accident damaged vehicles (cars were in very short supply after
the War) such as Armstrong Siddeley, MG, Talbot and Vauxhall"
Charge Hand was Alex Black who had the responsibility of driving
the 'Wrecker'. He also taught me to drive when I was 17. We
attended many road accidents and breakdowns in the City.
we had to recover Jimmy Logan the comedian from the Maybury when
he had just got married to Grace Pagan he wasn't in a mood to be
funny that day as he had an American Hudson Terraplane which we
were unable to repair for some weeks 'awaiting spares'."
My Car -
"Another workmate was Jim McNeill from
Brandon Terrace, He asked me, one day, if I'd like a car. There was to be
a sale of Government Surplus vehicles at Powderhall Stadium in July
I went to the sale and
became, for £12, the owner of a 1944 ex- National Fire Service
Austin utility in grey rust finish with 'AFS' on the doors! It only
had a few thousand miles on the clock and the canvas canopy was
covered in moss.
A couple of days later we borrowed the
Garage Salvage truck to tow it to my Uncle's garage in Inverleith
Terrace Lane where I had once worked. We added a second hand 6v
battery from the SMT garage and a gallon of then rationed
petrol. We connected the battery and the engine started at the
Of course it took some time to get
it roadworthy but it was already registered with a
London provincial number so it was soon on the road. I kept that
vehicle until 1950 and hardly spent a penny on it.
I was with the
SMT at various branches including Croall & Croall then in York
Place and also Roseburn Street. I left in 1952 to join the REME and
pursue a Military career."
Glamis Castle, Angus, Scotland: April 25, 2006
Thank you to Alex Dow who, after reading the comments above, sent
some of his memories of Broughton in the 1940s
"The mention of a Hudson Terraplane
brought back more memories.
As I was born in 1935, and was quite young
when I first encountered the Hudson Terraplane.
It seemed enormous to me,
having to take one or two steps to reach the back seat. Few car
aficionados have heard of it.
I traveled in one quite frequently,
delivering wedding cakes baked by my father during World War
II, and also in the later 1940s."
Alex Dow, Fife, Scotland:
September 8, 2006