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British Industrial History

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Charles Gainer Smith

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Charles Gainer Smith (1880-1948)

1949 Obituary [1]

"Air Commodore CHARLES GAINER SMITH, C.B., C.B.E., R.A.F. (ret.), had a long record of service in the Royal Air Force, in the course of which he rose to important administrative posts.

He was born in 1880 and received his practical training at the engineering works of Messrs. Stothert and Pitt, in Bath, from 1896 to 1901, and concurrently attended classes at the Bath Technical School. After four years' experience as buyer for the Glasgow Electric Crane and Hoist Co he returned to Bath and successively held positions as works manager to Messrs. William Parham, Ltd., heating engineers, and as manager for Messrs. Gainer and Cambridge, horticultural engineers. In 1911 he became deputy manager to the British American Tobacco Company, Ltd., at Bristol, but after holding this post for four years he was commissioned in the Royal Flying Corps and served in France, being subsequently responsible for the repair of all R.A.F. transport at St. Omer. In 1919 he was appointed equipment officer and promoted to the rank of squadron leader, his promotion to wing commander following two years later. He was made deputy director of equipment in 1928 with the rank of group captain and from 1930 he took over the duties of deputy director of stores. In this capacity he was responsible to the air member of the Ministry for estimates and the supply, distribution, and maintenance of mechanical transport, in addition to the administration of R.A.F. stores depots. In 1938 he was posted to headquarters, maintenance command, at Andover, as officer in charge of administration with subsequent promotion to the rank of air commodore. For his services he was made C.B. in 1946. Commodore Gainer Smith, whose death occurred' on 11th October 1948, was elected a Member of the Institution in 1931."

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