When we arrived in Plymouth one of the first things we were advised to do was sign on as unemployed. Much to our dismay the Unemployment Office counted the money we had spent on airfares as “earnings” despite the fact we had obviously spent it. We were also made to spend the £750 we had brought with us before they would consider our application. It didn’t take long before that money was gone and if I recall correctly it was calculated how long it was supposed to last and it was weeks and weeks before we could claim. Despite the two of us not having a job, there was a determination to honour our tithe so this we diligently paid on our unemployment earnings. I believe God blessed our commitment and Amanda soon landed a job with Debenhams. We found that we could live within our means and we managed to avoid financial trouble. We even managed to purchase an Austin 1100 to run around in, and get to Church on Sunday. It was 18 months before I landed my first job. We have struggled at times but have always been determined to live within our means. When we tried to save there always seemed to be something we needed money for – another car, bed, washing machine etc. but in those early years we never had to borrow money to replace those things.
Moving to Harwell Court, Frankfort Gate.
There came a time when the house we were living in was going to be sold and it worried us that we might have to find expensive accommodation that we could not afford having meagre earnings. After a Court hearing the Council was obliged to house us and we accepted the offer of a 2 bed flat in Harwell Court, which overlooks Frankfurt Gate. Praise the Lord. This suited us down to the ground! Amanda was working at Debenhams and I was working at Marks and Spencer. We could both walk to work. Also, our working hours ended up being designed just for us. Amanda worked a normal day and my day started at 1pm at M&S. I dropped Teressa off at Nursery School in the morning and Amanda picked her up in the afternoon after work. Later on that would include Joseph as well.