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British Industrial History

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Robert Bonar

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Robert Bonar (c1888-1960)

of the East Indian Railway

1962 Obituary [1]

Mr Robert Bonar, who died on 19th October at the age of 72, spent much of his adult life in the service of railways in India and Egypt.

He was educated at Aske's School and Kirkcaldy High School and was apprenticed to Douglas and Grant Ltd in 1905. He attended the Kirkcaldy Technical School and Heriot Watt College during his training. He served in the Royal Engineers in the 1914-18 war and returned to Douglas and Grant in 1917, becoming Assistant Works Manager a year later.

In 1921 he was appointed General Manager of their Rangoon Branch and, after two years in Aden as Chief Designer for power plants with the Admiralty, he became personal assistant to the Deputy Chief Mechanical Engineer, Jamalpur Works, East Indian Railway.

Mr Bonar continued his career with the Company, remodelling the Jamalpur Workshops and finally becoming Chief Mechanical Engineer. In 1945 he obtained a similar position with Egyptian State Railways, later he became Inspector-General and, for one year before his retirement in 1948, he served as Technical Adviser to the Egyptian Government.

Mr Bonar was for many years a member of the Indian Advisory Panel. He became a Graduate of the Institution in 1913 transferring to Associate Member in 1917 and to Member in 1949. He was also a Member of the Institution of Locomotive Engineers.

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