Workers Lunchtime


I’m on a quest. To fill that pure, unadulterated hour. Sandwiched between the two thick slabs of morning and afternoon. In my job I’m lucky enough to have an hour break for lunch and I’m looking for new bite-sized stuff to do.

I like the old, Victorian, philanthropic capitalists like local lad Titus Salt, the Lever brothers, Mr Cadbury, and the Rowntree family. Whilst counting their money they provided their workers with distractions, other than just combing wool, making soap or stirring chocolate.

These forward looking individuals knew that work wasn’t the be-all and end-all. The well-being of employees was on the agenda. Maybe it wasn’t just altruism, maybe they got more work out of a more content work force.

And those Victorian types were all for setting up societies to discuss big matters and learn more about each other and the world. From now on I’ll devote more of my lunchtimes to see what this city can offer its workers around noon.

So far I’ve been digging some mindfulness at the local Buddhist temple. Taken piano lessons again after a break of 20 years. I’ve got on my bike and cycled down river to see leaping Salmon. Discovered a lecture about magic lanterns (basically the demonic precursor to PowerPoint ). Went hunting for the grave of Pablo Fanque, Victorian circus impresario, whose name is immortalised in the Beatles song, Being For the Benefit of Mr Kite. The other week I attended a gathering of local philosophers in a pub to talk about Truth. So instead of window shopping and eating a pasty at the desk I’m going to look for lunchtime enlightenment through exploratory meanderings, lectures, travel, eating and leisure. And be back in an hour.


5 thoughts on “Workers Lunchtime

    • it is a great idea, but not mine. A friend has guest posted it after I was chatting to them about the idea that they had. I’m hoping they will post up some different things they get up to and be great if other people suggested some stuff as well

  1. I love the idea of using a lunch hour for something more constructive than just grabbing a sandwich. I’ve been pondering getting hold of a folding bike for my commute and also to do things at lunchtime like going for a spin for a bit to explore – it’d be useful to get to places I wouldn’t normally be able to make it to in an hour!

    Interested to hear what else you discover in your lunchbreak. Good idea for a blog series!

    • Cheers Dave, hopefully it might turn into an interesting series, it’s a mate of mine doing it and guest blogging

  2. I work in a drab little town called Port Talbot, a place dominated by the sights and smells of a steel works. On the face of it, not a lot of potential for lunchtime exploits, but on my bike, I have discovered that is far from the truth. I can be cycling along the NCR4, the coastal route around Swansea Bay within 10 minutes, glorious on sunny days. Or into Margam park, with it’s castle, abbey, orangery and nature reserve, with deer roaming the grounds. I can follow the local river to the sea, watching birdlife, from stonechats to herons, swans, and cormorants among a small flotilla of fishing boats. Or I can explore the urban park and churchyards of the great and powerful, but not so good, the exploiters if you will, who established the originally massive steel plant. Unemployment is very high, not a lot of hope here, yet another 400 jobs to go from the steel works, while the fatcats get ever richer. I am lucky enough to have a job, and a meal break, many here have neither. Sadly, many of them don’t consider having all day, to do what I try to do in my lunch hour, a luxury.

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