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British Industrial History

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John Milburn

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John Milburn (1838-1907) of Hawkshead Foundry, Quay Side, Workington.

1907 Obituary [1]

JOHN MILBURN was born at Staleybridge on 9th January 1838, and was the son of Mr. Thomas Milburn, founder of the business to which Messrs. Taylor Lang and Co., machinists, of that place subsequently succeeded.

After finishing his apprenticeship he entered the service of his relations, Messrs. Milburn and Sons, ironfounders, of Staleybridge, and was largely employed in the superintendence of the erection and fitting of the ironwork of some of the most important railway stations throughout Lancashire. His services were also requisitioned in regard to the laying of the water mains of some of the neighbouring towns, including those of the Manchester Corporation.

In the autumn of 1869 he commenced business for himself in Workington as an ironfounder and engineer, erecting the premises known as the Hawkshead Foundry and Engine Works. To these he added the Havelock Road Engineering Works in 1897. He was chiefly concerned in the manufacture of machinery for water works and for many of the ironworks and collieries abounding in West Cumberland.

For some years he acted as chairman of the Workington Local Board, and for two years in succession was mayor of the borough after its incorporation, filling the latter office during the late Queen's Diamond Jubilee year. He took a leading part in obtaining the Charter of Incorporation of the town, and was one of the first aldermen, retaining that position until his death. He was also a Member of the County Council. Amongst his other public offices were those of a Governor of the Workington Infirmary and Chairman of the Infirmary Committee from the inception of that Institution.

His death occurred on the 31st October 1906; in his sixty-ninth year, whilst on a visit to Harrogate.

He became a Member of this Institution in 1874.

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