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Frederick Ashmead

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Frederick Ashmead (1825-1898), Borough Engineer of Bristol


1899 Obituary [1]

FREDERICK ASHMEAD, born in Bristol on the 4th May, 1825, was the second son of the late Mr. G. C. Ashmead, land agent and surveyor, of that city.

He was educated in Bristol, and, after serving articles to Mr. Underwood, a local architect, joined the engineering staff of the South Wales Railway, now part of the Great Western Railway system. He was first stationed at Newport, and was subsequently appointed Resident Engineer on the construction of the Bridged and Neath section of the line.

About the year 1851 Mr. Ashmead returned to Bristol, and became an assistant to the late Mr. Armstrong, the then City Surveyor.

On the death of that gentleman in 1854, Mr. Ashmead was appointed Surveyor to the Local Board of Health, and Then that body was merged in the Sanitary Authority he was appointed Borough Engineer. During his term of office, which extended over forty years, Mr. Ashmead designed and carried out a new system of drainage for the city, laying intercepting sewers to take the drainage, which formerly emptied itself into the Rivers Avon and Frome, and to carry it ultimately to the Bristol Channel. In 1875, at the Bristol meeting of the British Association, he read an interesting Paper on the drainage of the city.

In 1894 Mr. Ashmead retired from the post of Borough Engineer, his services being retained, however, as Consulting Engineer in connection with the important question of the sewage disposal of the city, still under consideration.

Mr. Ashmead died at Upper Belgrave Road, Durdham Down, on the 23rd August, 1898, only ten days after the death of his wife, to whom he had been married nearly fifty years. He was a sound and able engineer, gifted with considerable foresight, and the city of Bristol is in no small degree indebted to him for the way in which he carried out the duties of his office.

Mr. Ashmead was President of the Incorporated Association of Municipal Engineers in 1877. In manner he was retiring and mod&, courteous and straightforward, and he gained the respect of those who sometimes differed from him in opinion.

Mr. Ashmead was elected a Member of the Institution on the 4th April, 1865.



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