Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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Charles Anthony Holbrow

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Charles Anthony Holbrow (1863-1950)

1952 Obituary [1]

"CHARLES ANTHONY HOLBROW, whose death occurred on 27th December 1950 at the age of eighty-seven, was one of the pioneers of the electrical industry. He was educated at Uppingham School and the City and Guilds of London College. In 1884 he began an apprenticeship with the Telegraph Construction Company, Ltd., East Greenwich, transferring later to the Great Western Railway's electric lighting works at Paddington as assistant engineer. In this connection it is interesting that Mr. Holbrow was the last surviving member of the group of engineers, including Messrs. Gordon and Frank Bailey, who worked at the old Paddington power station and at Manchester Square, where the first steam turbine was erected.

On the conclusion of his training in 1888 Mr. Holbrow joined the staff of the Metropolitan Electric Supply Co as engineer-in-charge of the Whitehall and Manchester Square stations, and subsequently served as resident engineer in the Willesden works of the same company. In 1901 he joined J. G. White and Company, Ltd., London and New York, and went to Australia in that year to supervise the erection of a large power plant in Kalgoorlie. In 1903 he went to Holland for the same firm, and was in charge of the light-railway contract for the Amsterdam-Haarlem line. Two years later he took up an appointment as engineer to the South Wales Power Co. In 1907 he began a connexion with the firm of C. A. Parsons and Co, Heaton Works, Newcastle upon Tyne, which lasted until his retirement thirty years later. Mr. Holbrow had been an Associate Member of the Institution since 1901."

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