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Thomas Walley

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Thomas Walley (1872-1947)


1947 Obituary [1]

"IT is with great regret that we record the death of Mr. Thomas Walley, which occurred on October 1st at his home at Sidcup, Kent, after only a few days' illness. For the past twenty-two years Mr. Walley had been a member of the editorial staff of our contemporary, Engineering.

Thomas Walley was born at Blackburn on June 5th, 1872, and after education at private schools was apprenticed in December, 343 1887, to Westray, Copeland and Co., Ltd., marine and general engineers, Barrow-in-Furness. When his apprenticeship bad been completed in 1893, Mr. Walley remained with the firm for a short time as a junior draughtsman, and then joined the staff of the Naval Construction and Armaments Co- now Vickers-Armstrongs, Ltd.- as a draughtsman, being engaged on experimental work as assistant to Mr. Alfred Blechynden.

In 1897, Walley left Barrow to take up an appointment in the works of John Penn and Sons, Greenwich, where he was concerned with the organisation of the Belleville boiler department. Subsequently, the firm amalgamated with the Thames Ironworks, and he became personal assistant to Mr. G. B. Young, the general manager...Read More


1949 Obituary [2]

"THOMAS WALLEY, M.I.Mech.E., familiar to many members of the Institution, died at his home in Sidcup on 1st October 1947, after an illness of only three days. Mr. Walley was born in Lancashire in 1872, and trained in the marine branch of engineering.

His career commenced with apprenticeship to the firm of Westray, Copeland and Co, of Barrow-in-Furness, and was followed by service with the Naval Armament and Construction Co (now Vickers, Ltd.), where he became personal assistant to the engineering manager, on experimental work. In 1905 he transferred his services in a like capacity to John Penn and Sons, Greenwich, combining his duties with those of chief draughtsman.

Subsequently he moved to Cochran and Co, Annan, as joint manager. In the course of these appointments he was associated with a variety of work, including design and shop production of much naval and other machinery, and especially with the development of the Blechynden and Belleville boilers, etc. While with Messrs. Cochran and Company, having been "reserved" and refused permission to join up in a Territorial unit, he obtained a commission in the R.N.V.R. of which he remained very proud all his days. He had the opportunity of specializing in naval mining, and this led to his selection for attachment to the Italian Admiralty for special service in the Adriatic. This, however, was cancelled on his being chosen as one of a small group of officers charged with the preparations for the Zeebrugge raid - on which work his ability, perseverance, and self-possession won the commendation of his immediate superiors, and also drew a generous tribute from Sir Roger Keyes.

On demobilization in 1919, he returned to Messrs. Cochran and Company, in his former capacity. In 1925, Mr. Walley became connected with the editorial staff of Engineering and, with little previous experience of technical journalism, soon proved to be well fitted for it. His all-round mechanical work, and his capacity for taking pains, together with his great skill as a draughtsman, had equipped him to handle a wide range of subjects in a thorough manner. He was ever ready to probe the intricacies of new developments, as much for their interpretation to others in the columns of the journal he served, as for his own personal enlightenment and pleasure. He was versatile and willing and possessed unstinted loyalty and reliability. He would handle any matter in his charge with quiet efficiency and dispatch. He was possessed of high ideals which, without advertising, were readily discernible. Among members of the Institution he will be remembered for his unassuming friendliness and courtesy. He became a Member of the Institution in 1926, serving for many years on the Committee of Management of the Benevolent Fund, and was a Member of the Institution of Naval Architects, and other bodies.


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