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British Industrial History

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William T. Lockett

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William T. Lockett (c1887-1960) of the Middlesex Main Drainage Department

1960 Obituary [1]

THE death occurred, on February 23, of Mr. William T. Lockett, a former chief chemist of the Middlesex Main Drainage Department and a past-president of the Institute of Sewage Purification.

Mr. Lockett who was seventy-three, achieved considerable distinction in the field of sewage purification. Following research work earned out at Manchester with Fowler and Ardern, he discovered, in 1914, the activated sludge process of sewage purification. It was a discovery which can be claimed to have revolutionised sewage treatment; the process has been adopted by all the largest public health authorities in the world during the last forty years.

Mr. Lockett was a graduate of the Honours School of Chemistry of Manchester University; he obtained his M.Sc. in 1909, later becoming a Fellow of the Chemical Society.

He started his career in local government in 1907 with the Manchester Corporation and, apart from the war years, remained there until 1935, when he was appointed chief chemist at the then new Mogden works of the Middlesex County Council.

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