75: John Loaring


Manage episode 256955492 series 2312064
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My guest this week is John Loaring, whose claim to fame is that he invented PPI, and who was at Lampeter from 1964-67 while it made the transition from being an all-male theological college. He recounts how many of his contemporaries thought that having female students was an experiment that would fail and go away, and John recounts how he ended up going to Lampeter in the first place. We learn that he had previously been working for the Inland Revenue and as a porter for British Rail, and did train announcements at Cardiff General.
We talk about the days when we were paid to go to university. His father worked for the railway for 38 years but was always classed as temporary staff. He recalls the days when there was a lot of mental bullying depending on one’s background and we discuss the concept of stepping outside of one’s comfort zone. He was the first in his family to go to university, and we learn about the role that rugby and drinking played in his student days.
John used to write down what was on the radio and talks about fostering his musical loves at university and how he still plays the same music.
John went into banking after university where it mattered that he had a degree irrespective of its subject or classification. He taught English to civil servants without having had any teaching experience and we learn that he went from there to work for TSB in the Manchester area. He remembers the days of handwritten ledgers and then saw the move to computerization, and we find out why he thinks banking has gone downhill now.
He talks about the value of having a university education and thinking outside of the box and he relays some of the professions which his contemporaries went into, including teaching, the military and the Church. He had himself been Church-minded as a Methodist and we learn that the College was largely apolitical in his day and how it was largely an English college in a Welsh setting.
In the final part of the interview John talks about not forgetting the bad times and how Lampeter on a Sunday evening could be a miserable place. We learn why since retirement he tends to focus on the here and now and why he doesn’t think there is an awful lot to look forward to.
Please note: Opinions expressed are solely those of Chris Deacy and John Loaring and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of the University of Kent.