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British Industrial History

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Henry Burkinshaw

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Henry Burkinshaw (1881-1939)

1940 Obituary [1]

HENRY BURKINSHAW spent over twenty years in India, where he was responsible for pumping, winding, and hauling machinery for the Bengal coalfields, and all the machinery for the Bhinigoda Weir across the Ganges.

He was born at Wakefield in 1881 and received his education at King Edward VI School, Norwich, until 1896, and at the Knutsford Grammar School until 1897. He then spent a year in the engineering laboratory at the University of Cambridge as a private pupil of Professor Ewing and during the next three years attended Armstrong College, and Rutherford College, Newcastle upon Tyne.

He served his apprenticeship from 1898 to 1903 with Messrs. C. A. Parsons and Company, Ltd., Newcastle upon Tyne. He then joined the British Thomson Houston Company, Ltd., Rugby, and remained with this company as assistant steam turbine designer until 1905, when he was appointed resident engineer to the Lancashire Electric Power Company.

In 1907 he became power and mining engineer in the dynamo works of Messrs. Siemens Brothers and Company, Ltd., and in 1910 was appointed general manager of the firm's Indian branches. In 1916 he became attached to the military works department of the army headquarters at Simla and in the following year took over the post of controller of mechanical and electrical engineering for the Indian Munitions Board. He remained in this position until the end of 1918 when he started his own practice in Calcutta as a consulting engineer.

In 1926 he became managing director of Messrs. Marshall, Sons and Company (India), Ltd., engineers, of Calcutta, and in 1929 was appointed agent and chief engineer of the Madras Electric Supply Corporation, Ltd., and the Madras Electric Tramways 090-9, Ltd. He held this up until his death, which occurred on 22nd November 1939, and during the period he was in Madras he held the position of chairman of the Indian Road Transport Board. At one time he was also a member of the Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Employers' Federation of Southern India.

He was elected a Member of the Institution in 1920 and wits also a Member of the Institution of Electrical Engineers, and a past-president of the Institution of Engineers (India).

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