When I started my apprenticeship in the early 1960s at the Islington Railway workshops. it was common place for those who had decided to take a superior path at work to join the Civilian Military Forces (CMF) and on their Parade Day they wore their Army uniform to work and would walk around all day in their well pressed attire and their shiny boots.
The great thing for those blokes was they did bugger all work on that day.
A group of us Rebels decided we needed to put a end to this show of Elitism and we encouraged one of them (the Little Pom with the Big Boots) to hide from the Boss by climbing inside the fire box of one of the old steam boilers and in so doing we would place a cover over the hole to keep him safe.
Now, when I think about it he must have been a bit dim.
Little did he know that on the way in we had painted the heels of his shiny boots with bright yellow paint and with much encouragement and a bottle of Coke to keep him hydrated we shut the cover.
The young Rebels then grabbed a armful of cotton waste doused it in Kero (kerosene) and set it alight under the fire box grate .
Black smoke was billowing out of the fire box and being obviously anxious about not killing the Little Pom with the Big Boots, we opened the fire box door and out he came very black in colour and coughing his guts up.
Needless to say the Little Pom didn’t wear that Army clobber to work again and neither did his other CMF mates who all had their big booted heels painted that same day .