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British Industrial History

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G. W. Volckman

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G. W. Volckman (1873-1931)

1931 Obituary[1]


We regret to have to record the death, in a nursing home in London, on the 15th inst., of Mr. G. W. Volckman, who was connected with much civil engineering work in this country and abroad. Mr. Volckman was born in 1873, receiving his early education at Dulwich College from which he passed to King’s College where he took a two years’ engineering course. In the ensuing nine years he was successfully an assistant under Mr. G. W. Manton, Mr. W. J. S. Binnis, and Sir J. Wolf Barry and Partners. Under the first he was connected with excavation and training works on the Mersey locks giving access to the Bridgewater and Runcorn Docks, and docks at the Royal Dockyard, Portsmouth. Subsequently he was engaged on the staff of Messrs. Price and Reeves on the Notting Hill Gate-Marble Arch section of the Central London Railway, and next was in charge of the construction of a 41 mile main line section of the South Eastern Railway. Subsequently he was engaged on widening of the L. and N. W. and G. W. Joint line from Chester to Birkenhead.

In 1902 he took charge of the sinking of caissons at the site of the then proposed Avonmouth Docks, and later of the sinking of the Sloane street Station shaft of the Piccadilly Tube railway. Between 1902 and 1907 he acted as engineer and manager in charge of the Bermuda Dockyard extension for the Admiralty, and in the latter year he visited Canada to report on Lake ports. tin 1908, he took up the position of engineer for the Montreal, Ottawa and Georgian Bay Canal Company, and in 1910 was engineer to the Dominions Dry Dock Company for which he designed docks at Quebec and St. John, 1,000 ft. long, 120 ft. wide and with 35 ft. of water over the sill. In 1910-1912, as chief engineer for Messrs. Macarthur Perks and Company, Ottawa, he was responsible for the design and construction of concrete piers at Havana, and also for suction dredging and reclamation for Messrs. Barclay Parsons and Klapp, of New York. He next turned his attention to railway work on the Pacific coast, as engineer to the same firm, which had obtained the work for 120 miles of Southern Pacific Railway main line in Oregon. Later, work included the design of docks for Ascension, Paraguay, Port of Spain, Trinidad, &c. In 1928, he took up an appointment as chief engineer and representative in India and the east, of Sir Alexander Gibb and Partners.

He joined the Institution of Civil Engineers as a Student in 1892. In 1925, he was made a full member. He was also a member of the Engineering Institute of Canada, and of the American Society of Civil Engineers."

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