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British Industrial History

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Reginald William James

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Reginald William James (1863-1940)


1941 Obituary [1]

REGINALD WILLIAM JAMES whose death occurred on 14th November 1940 was a Member of the Institution for over fifty years, having been elected in 1889; he was also a Member of the Institution of Civil Engineers.

He was born in 1863 and educated at Merchant Taylors' School and Birkbeck College. He served his apprenticeship in the marine engine and boiler works of Messrs. J. Penn and Sons at Greenwich from 1879 to 1884, during which period he was also engaged on work in connection with the trial trips of various vessels. From 1885 to 1887 he was attached to the staff of Sir John Fowler, Bart., consulting engineer to the New South Wales Government, and took charge of large railway contracts and other constructional works.

He subsequently occupied a similar position under Sir A. Rendel, consulting engineer to the Indian State Railways. In 1888 he entered into partnership with Mr. J. C. Fell, a past-president or the Chartered Institute of Patent Agents, and practised in the City of London for fifty years as a consulting engineer and chartered patent agent.

Mr. James was for sixteen years the principal proprietor and editor of The Marine Engineer and Naval Architect, a periodical now known as The Marine Engineer and Motor Ship Builder. He was the first Mayor of Bromley, Kent, to be a native of the borough, and took an active interest in the provision of the municipal building. The many positions he held included those of chairman of the Land Drainage Committee of the Thames Catchment Area, and commissioner of sewers for that river from Lombard's Wharf to Greenhithe. He was chairman of the West Kent Main Sewerage Board, of which he was a member for nearly forty years, and was also vice-chairman of the Metropolitan Water Board, and a past-president of the Chartered Institute of Patent Agents.


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