Bert had been unemployed for a year after being made redundant from closed factory Fosters' Foundry in December 1980 and applied for a job at Longshaw's after a tip from Len Fairclough that they were looking for men. Unfortunately, while claiming the dole, he had accepted paid work from his neighbours and this had been discovered by the DSS. His first day at Longshaw's coincided with his court appearance and works manager Mr Swift admitted that they wouldn't have employed him had they known this fact. Nevertheless Bert started for work on 27th January, relieved to be in full-time employment again.
However his luck was still against him as he broke his arm at the Foundry at the end of the year and by March 1983 his sick pay was halved by the firm. The same month Bert was informed that he had suffered a mini-stroke, meaning that his time at the company was effectively finished. He died ten months later after a long period of sickness.