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British Industrial History

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Arthur Wildman Burnett

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Arthur Wildman Burnett (1844-1890)


1891 Obituary [1]

. . . . He was articled for five years, from 1863 to 1867, to J. F. Latrobe Bateman. His great natural ability soon made itself evident, and Mr. Bateman, on the completion of his pupilage, engaged him as an assistant and entrusted him with important duties.

He was chiefly associated with hydraulic engineering, and took part in the preparation of the scheme for supplying London with water from Wales, and also investigated the causes of the Shannon floods, and assisted in the designing of the works for the prevention of them. He was also engaged during this period as assistant in laying out and designing the Halifax, Dewsbury and Heckmondwike, Batley, Blackburn, Ashton Stalybridge and Dukinfield, and Dundee Waterworks, and others of minor importance.

In 1867 he carried out a survey of the River Mersey at Runcorn, and in 1869 was appointed resident engineer on the Manchester Waterworks in the Longdendale Valley. This position he filled for four years, being occupied in finishing the construction of the works, and in surveying for the scheme for bringing the water of the Thirlmere Lake to Manchester.

In 1874 he was sent by Mr. Bateman to Ceylon to lay out a scheme and collect materials for a report on the supply of' Colombo with water. On his return the following year he again went to Manchester, where he acted as principal assistant to Mr. G. H. Hill until 1882, when he accepted the post of Chief Resident Engineer at Colombo, under Mr. Bateman as consulting engineer, for the carrying out and construction of the waterworks for the Crown Agents of the Colonies. After overcoming great difficulties these works were finally completed in February, 1890.


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