The Prescotian Webzine

British Insulated Calendar Cables and the Prescot Grammar Schools
It may not be apparent now, but Prescot was the centre of the cable in Britain. The "BI" as it was affectionately known dominated employment for some eighty years in the town. It contributed to everyone’s' lives either directly as employees or other traders who depended on the wages of the workers!

BICC Ltd (British Insulated Calendar Cables) was also a philanthropic company that provided its employees with a social club ( now the leisure centre on Warrington Road), Christmas parties for local children, convalescence home in Lytham to name but a few!

My father and his siblings were all proud of the BICC. I, myself, worked for five summers as a student in the Telephone Cables Division. Lots of PGS lads and PGGS lasses will have started their employment lives at the “BI”.

Sadly, it has all gone and the Name BICC has disappeared into Balfour Beatty Construction.

Apart from employment, investment etc ….. what did the BICC do for Prescot? (Monty Python answers on a postcard please!)

What was their level of support for the two grammar schools in the town, which the Directors must have seen as a great source of potential talent?

I recall the model railway club at PGS, one of the highlights in the Physics Lab was the donated ‘0’ gauge layout that had been used by BICC to get a huge slice of the Euston to Liverpool and Manchester Railway Electrification contracts. When this monster of a model was displayed, it took schoolboy’s breaths away! Sadly, thanks to renowned PGS arsonist, this layout did not survive into posterity.

Contributions from Prescotian Readers

Susan Kay writes "I was a proud recipient of the BICC 400th Anniversary Governors' Bursary, (set up in 1944), which provided an annual sum of 40 per year for each of my 3 years at university. Not a fortune but it certainly bought me a few books. And I got a very well paid holiday job at the end of my second year , working in the HR department, on the strength of it. Oh how I used to love walking across the foundry floor with the wages packets of a Friday...

I also remember that as a member of the choir, we were drafted in sometimes to sing at BICC directors' funerals ! 'Let us now praise famous men'... "

On this very website, we can see evidence of the support given by BICC to the schools, but I suspect that this is just the tip of the iceberg ……

Advertising in the Prescotian magazine as a potential employer

Providing speakers for prize-giving ceremonies, 1945 and 1969

Providing the social club hall for prize-giving when demand outstripped the old school hall

Offering initial computing skills seminars

Providing temporary classrooms after the aforesaid arson attacks

Technology Today' exhibition at the school with support from BICC

We look forward to more readers' contributions about the BICC and the Prescot Grammar Schools

Contact Us | Legal Stuff