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British Industrial History

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John Arthur Saner

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John Arthur Saner (1864-1952)

1911 Living at Highfield, Northwich, Cheshire: John Arthur Saner (age 46 born Kingston-upon-Hull), Consulting Civil Engineer, Inland Navigation - Own Account. With his wife Ethel Maude Saner (age 46 born (?), East Yorks) and their two daughters Ethel Mary Caroline Saner (age 14 born Northwich) and Phyllis Marguerite Saner (age 10 born Northwich). Married 18 years with three children. Four servants.[1]


1952 Obituary [2]

JOHN ARTHUR SANER, who died on the 20th February at the age of 87, was born on the 11th August, 1864.

He was educated privately and then for three years was an articled pupil of the late R. A. Marillier of the Hull Dock Company.

At the age of 21, he was appointed. Assistant to the late L. B. Wells, Engineer to the River Weaver Trustees and, when the latter retired two years later in 1887, he became Resident Engineer and, in 1888, Engineer.

In 1919 he was appointed General Manager in addition, and when he retired in 1934 his services as a consulting engineer were retained until the River Weaver Navigation Trust came under the control of the British Transport Commission.

During his forty-five years as Engineer, he was responsible for extensive, schemes of construction and alteration involving bridges, locks, sluices, embankments, and docks. He installed electrical plant for swing-bridge operation, converted the Anderton Boat Lift from hydraulic to electrical power, and rebuilt the Hale Head Lighthouse. He also reported on schemes for improving the waterways from Birmingham and Stoke-on-Trent to the Mersey estuary, and inspected numerous reservoirs as required by the (Safety Provisions) Act of 1930.

His association with the Institution was long and active. Elected an Associate Member in 1890, he was transferred to full membership six years later. He was awarded a Telford Medal for a Paper entitled “On Waterways in Great Britain” in 1906, and subsequently wrote two other Papers and was awarded a Telford Premium. He delivered Vernon Harcourt Lectures in 1913 and 1534, and was President of the Manchester Local Association of the Institution from 1905 to 1906.

In addition to the professional and engineering activities just outlined, he served on a variety of civil administrative boards and committees, ranging from the Upper Mersey Navigation Commission to the Boy Scouts Association. From 1883 to 1921 he served continuously in the Volunteers and the Territorials, being gazetted Honorary Colonel in 1906. When placed on the retired list in 1921 he retained his seat on the Territorial Association. In 1937 he was appointed Deputy Lieutenant for the County Palatine of Chester. His services were recognized by the award of the Order of the Bath in the 1939 Birthday Honours.

He was married in 1892 to Miss E. M. Jameson, and is survived by his son and two daughters.


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