Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 148,101 pages of information and 233,633 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.
Edward Hayes, Senior (1818-1877) of Edward Hayes (Stony Stratford)
1877 Obituary 
THE LATE Mr. EDWARD HAYES.- In our impression of the 31st ult. we recorded the death of Mr. Edward Hayes, engineer, Stony Stratford.
Mr. Hayes played a not unimportant part in the introduction of agricultural machinery, and a few particulars concerning his career will, we think be read with interest.
Mr. Hayes was born in Manchester, in 1818, in which city he was apprenticed to Messrs. Kennedy. Soon after the completion of his indentures he accepted an appointment on the then London and Birmingham Railway, at the newly opened locomotive works at Wolverton, Mr. Bury, from the firm of Bury, Curtis, Kennedy, of Liverpool, being locomotive superintendent.
Mr. Hayes did not remain very long there, leaving Wolverton to establish an engineering works of his own at Stony Stratford. Though commenced thirty years ago on a comparatively small scale the Watling Works have earned a good reputation. Steam and railways were things unknown in Stony Stratford when Mr. Hayes first settled there in 1847, and on opening his works for the manufacture of engine and machinery, the farmers said of him, first that he could not make a steam engine, and when it was nearly finished, that he would never be able to make it go.
He met with considerable difficulties in persuading farmers that an engine would be of use to them, but he succeeded at last. Since these early days Mr. Hayes successfully introduced many useful inventions, as for example, his steam power windlass, patented in 1857, and which took the silver modal of the Royal Agricultural Society of England, at their Leeds meeting in 1861.
He was also the inventor and patentee of an arrangement by which the surface condensers of marine engines could be supplied with condensing water without the assistance of any circulating pumps, the action of the screw propeller being employed to this end.
A self-moving anchor used in steam cultivation is also included among his his patents, and at the time of his death other important projects were in progress. Mr. Hayes steam cultivating machinery was highly approved by the farmers in the counties bordering the locality in which Watling Works is situated.
In former years Mr. Hayes was also connected with steam traction on common roads, and his works wore often visited by such men at the Duke of Sutherland, the Earl of Caithness, and Mr. J. K, McConnell, late locomotive superintendent of the Wolverton works of the London and North-Western Railway, who took much interest in the subject.
A prominent feature at the Watling Works from the commencement has been the training of young men in the profession of mechanical engineering, and we understand that many of Mr. Hayes' old pupils are now occupying loading positions.
Of late years - since 1860 - the branch of engineering that has received most attention at the hands of Mr. Hayes has been the building of steamers for coasting, canal, and river work at home and abroad.