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John Gardner

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John Gardner (1821-1894)


1894 Obituary [1]

JOHN GARDNER, son of the late Harrie Gardner, Civil Engineer, was born on the 16th of December, 1821.

After serving a period of pupilage under his father, he was appointed about the year 1838 an Assistant Engineer on the London and Greenwich Railway. He held that post for three years and was then engaged in a similar capacity at the Newport Docks, Monmouthshire, and on the construction of a lock at Tottenham on the Lea Navigation.

For a time he acted as engineer to a large colliery-owner in Wales and was then engaged for four years, under Alfred Giles and the late P. W. Barlow, as Resident Engineer on the survey and construction of the Reading and Reigate Railway. On that line an effective girder, a combination of wrought and cast iron, was erected from his designs.

About the year 1850 Mr. Gardner started to practise on his own account. For some time he was engaged on various miscellaneous works, including the construction of a road viaduct in Scotland.

He was then occupied for some thirty years on work in connection with the projection and construction of railways. Among the lines for which he acted as engineer may be mentioned the Staines and Wokingham, the Merthyr and Abergavenny, the Nantwich and Market Drayton, the Ebbw Vale, and the Brynmawr and Blaenavon. The Welsh lines, owing to the physical features of the district, involved steep gradients, tunnels, viaducts and other heavy works.

Mr. Gardner also made surveys for projected lines from the Rhondda Valley to Newport and to Cardiff, and from Abergavenny to Brecon and to Monmouth. During the latter part of his professional career he was engaged in projecting and depositing parliamentary plans for railways from Windsor to Ascot, and from Ascot to Aldershot. Owing, however, to powerful local opposition the Bill for the construction of those lines was thrown out.

Mr. Gardner was compelled by ill-health to retire from active work in 1885. He lingered however for some years and died on the 15th of January, 1894. He was an engineer of ability, upright in all business transactions and much esteemed for the conscientious manner in which he carried out the works entrusted to his care. Mr. Gardner was elected an Associate of the Institution on the 6th of May, 1851, and was transferred to the class of Member on the 8th of February, 1870.


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