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Charles Lewis Eclair-Heath

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Charles Lewis Eclair-Heath (1867-1935), principal of Rutherford Technical College

1896 of the Municipal Technical School, SG Osborne Street, Hull.

1935 Obituary [1]

CHARLES LEWIS ECLAIR-HEATH was for sixteen years principal of Rutherford Technical College, Newcastle upon Tyne.

He was born in 1867, and served his apprenticeship from 1881 to 1888 in the Admiralty dockyard at Keyham, Devonport, after which he studied at the Royal College of Science, London, where he had the distinction of being a Whitworth Exhibitioner (1888), a Royal Scholar and a Royal Exhibitioner, and a Whitworth Scholar (1890).

He then joined Messrs. Earle's Shipbuilding and Engineering Company, Ltd., Hull, and was employed as a draughtsman until 1893, after which he turned to the teaching of engineering subjects, with which he was concerned for the remainder of his career.

His first teaching appointment was that of lecturer in mechanical and electrical engineering at the Central Science Schools, Sheffield; he later became chief lecturer and head of the department, holding this position for four years.

In 1897 he was appointed head of the engineering department in the Municipal Technical College, Hull. Here he designed and built a quadruple-expansion steam engine for experimental work, which was one of the very few engines of that type installed in technical and university colleges. In 1910 he commenced his association, as principal, with Rutherford Technical College. For eleven years he was also in charge of the engineering department, and he installed a large number of machines and much laboratory equipment, for experimental work.

During the War he equipped the workshops for the training of munition workers, and after 1918 he organized courses in several trades for training disabled men at the college. The number of students rose to over 2,500 in the time during which he was principal, and the staff finally numbered 100. In 1926 he retired awl lived at Bournemouth, where he died on 23rd November 1935.

He was elected an Associate Member of the Institution in 1896 and was transferred to Membership in 1925.

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