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Meet our people: Martin Barron
12 October 2018
Martin is a Reprints Team Leader in our English Language Teaching (ELT) division.
As an organization, OUP has been around for hundreds of years and has a wealth of history and interesting stories, many of which feature our people. This year, one of our employees celebrated his fortieth year of working for the Press. And in fact, OUP runs in Martin’s family.
He was born in the hospital that used to be opposite our Oxford office, grew up in a house owned by OUP, and the Press was his first job straight after leaving school. Both his father and grandfather worked for OUP before him and his son recently started here too. In total, four generations of his family have accumulated 125 years of service with the Press.
Having been here for such an impressive length of time, Martin recalls some of the changes OUP has seen over the years: ‘The single largest change I have seen is the physical printing moving out of the Great Clarendon Street site. The building used to be very different with the printing presses in it. My first job at OUP was working in the warehouse at Jordan Hill. I was on site the day we got the first container of books printed in China. At 17-years-old, I couldn’t understand how they could get things printed that far away, ship them here, and it still be cheaper than printing them in Oxford. We really were on the cusp of major change, yet no one had any idea how big an impact it would have.’
It is not uncommon these days to work for several different companies over the course of your career, but for Martin that was never something he considered. He explains: ‘There are not many places where you effectively have multiple companies under the same roof, which is the case here at OUP. Each division seems like a separate company, but at the same time you keep the feeling of working at the Press. This allows you to take advantage of different opportunities to progress your career, without having to leave the organization.’
Peter Marshall, Managing Director of ELT, added: ‘This is the first, and probably only, time in my career where I will get to acknowledge and congratulate someone on achieving this milestone. I don’t know many other companies that this would happen at, and I think it says something very special about OUP.’
PICTURE: Martin on his forklift truck in the OUP warehouse in 1981