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British Industrial History

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Frank Livesey

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Frank Livesey (1844-1899)

son of Thomas Livesey

brother of George Thomas Livesey


1899 Obituary [1]

FRANK LIVESEY, born on 6th July, 1844, was the younger son of the late Mr. Thomas Livesey, who was Secretary to the South Metropolitan Gas Co from 1839 to 1871.

The subject of this notice was educated at a private school, at Dulwich College, and in the Applied Sciences Department of King’s College, London.

In October, 1861, he was articled for three years to Joseph Fogerty, who was at that time engaged on the Coalbrookdale and Craven Arms Railways in Shropshire. He remained with Mr. Fogerty as an Assistant until 1868, when, in conjunction with his brother, George Thomas Livesey, he designed and superintended the erection of new works for the Tynemouth Gas Co, and of gasworks at Tudhoe in the county of Durham.

On the completion of the Tynemouth works he was appointed, in 1870, Engineer to that company, which post he held for three years.

Mr. Livesey’s connection with the South Metropolitan Gas Company began in 1873, when he was appointed Assistant Engineer under his brother, whom he assisted in the design of the first of the modern large gasholders, capable of containing 53 million cubic feet. The cost of the gasholders was thereby reduced by one half, or to less than 59 per 1,000 feet capacity. In 1882 he succeeded his brother as Chief Engineer, and although the new works at East Greenwich were planned by Mr. George Livesey, who had become Chairman of the Company, the detail work and the responsibility for their construction were mainly his.

The conception of the shallow tank saving a large amount in construction by keeping above the water-bearing strata - the diameter being ten times the depth, or 300 feet to 30 feet-for the twelve million cubic-feet gas-holder at East Greenwich was his, and he undertook the construction with the Company’s workmen.

He also rendered important services at the notable strike of stokers in December, 1889, although he did little outside work, his energy and strength being devoted to keeping the Company’s six stations, with their 3,000 to 4,000 men, in good working order.

Nr. Livesey died at Reigate on the 3rd Nay, 1899, at the age of 54.

He was elected an Associate of the Institution on the 7th December, 1869, and was transferred to the class of Members on the 4th December, 1883.


1899 Obituary [2]



1899 Obituary [3]



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