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British Industrial History

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Henry Renton

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Henry Renton (1815-1851)

1837 Henry Renton of Bradford, an Engineer, became a member of the Institution of Civil Engineers.[1]


1852 Obituary [2]

Mr. Henry Renton was born in June, 1815, at Apperly Bridge, near Leeds, and after receiving a liberal education at Rawdon Academy, he became, at the age of fifteen, a pupil of his uncle, Thomas Rhodes (M.Inst.C.E.), at that time resident engineer for the construction of the St. Katharine's Dock, London.

In that position he had the good fortune to attract the notice of Mr. Telford, who being struck with his mathematical attainments, his proficiency as a draughtsman and surveyor, and his general abilities, took him into his office, where he remained for some time.

He was then employed as assistant to Mr. Rhodes on surveys, and in preparing plans for the improvement of the Rivers Shannon, Ouse, and Severn, the Harbours of Hartlepool, Berwick, and Limerick, as well as for several other works.

In 1839, he was appointed the principal assistant of Mr. Rhodes, on the works of the Shannon navigation, and on the completion of the plans and reports, he became resident engineer on some of the most important contracts, among which may be mentioned the Bridge at Banagher, Mellich Lock and Weir, the Canal, Locks, and Bridge at James Town, and many others.

He was then engaged on railway surveys, in England; and in 1846, became the resident engineer under Mr. Grainger (M.Inst.C. E.) on the Leeds and Dewsbury Railway, where the mode of execution of the Brent Tunnel at Horley, and the other works, gave great satisfaction.

He then practised in London as a Civil Engineer for a short time, but his health failing, he removed to his native place, where he expired, after a protracted illness, on the 16th June 1861; respected for his talents and integrity, and beloved for his warm-hearted kindness and amiable disposition.

Mr. Renton joined the Institution as an Associate, in 1837, was transferred to the class of Graduates in the same year, and to the class of Members in 1847; and contributed a paper and drawings descriptive of a self-acting wasteboard at Naburn Lock, on the river Ouse, for which he received a Telford Medal.


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