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Peter Mills: Reminiscence
DOB: 1940Joined LEO: 1966
Role in LEO: Site Maintenance Engineer LEO III; System 4
Abstract: Born in Northern Island, father miner, mother textile worker, moved with large family to village in Northumberland, failed 11+, educated in local elementary school till age of 15 without any qualifications or certificates. One brother was an apprentice electrician at a local pit and attended Carlisle Technical College one day a week. Joe taking a peek at his brother’s books became interested and he too became an apprentice electrician at a local coal mine and attending Carlisle Technical College where he gained his ONC in mathematics and Electronics at the highest level.
In 1961 opted to join RAF as a Radar technician serving part of his time in Malta. On completing his service, having acquired a love for electronics, looked for a job with computers and in 1966 was taken on by EELM to train as maintenance engineer on LEO IIIs at Radley House. Notes the quality of training he received. "I loved every minute of the course”.
Moved to Scotland as site engineer on a LEO IIIs and System 4 machines. After a successful career left ICL in 1972 to work in a number of electronic companies, before setting up his own consultancy and completing an honours degree in mathematics at the Open University. Joe retired in 2009. Final words from a fascinating memoir: "For me, I think, LEO provided an environment and situation in which I could succeed in my own terms. I was doing work that I could understand, that I liked and that made sense to me. In a sense, that gave me an attitude of if I can understand and use a computer, I can learn to do anything. That’s a big thing to say about a company but I believe that, even then, it was a special sort of company with special people in it”.
Date : Unknown
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