Confidential waste sacks

It was a fearful anti Nazi campaigner who created the forerunner of the paper shredders which rumble away every day in the Crow warehouse destroying confidential information.

Adolf Ehinger’s anti Nazi leaflets were found in his rubbish bin by a prying neighbour who threatened to report him to the authorities.

Fortunately the neighbour’s words were just an empty threat. But Herr Ehinger was understandably rattled and set about finding a way to shred leaflets before they reached the dustbin.

He based his design on a hand operated pasta maker he had in his kitchen, making a machine large enough to shred an A4 piece of paper and then adding a motor.

After the war he set up a factory to produce the shredders and selling mainly to government departments.

Separately and 26 years earlier an American Abbot Augustus Low of New York invented a paper shredder but his design never left the drawing board.