The First Six Years by H.Cooch


“THE FIRST SIX YEARS 1951-1957 ”
by H. COOCH, A.M.I.E.E., Hon. Secretary

Foreword by Dr. D. Watson, President 1956-57

I Particulars of the Association.
II History of Inauguration.
III Presidents.
IV Officers.
V Members of Committee.
VI Talks by Guest Speakers.
VII Talks by Members.
VIII Visits to Works.
IX Annual Suppers.
X Summer Outings.
XI Reminiscenses by the Hon. Secretary.

October, 1957.

The Association of Retired Engineers has now completed the sixth session since its formation in the year 1951, and I am pleased to have this opportunity of submitting an introduction to the record of its activities during that time. As members we can take pride in the fact that this is the first Association of its kind to become known to the Chartered Engineering Institutions. A report on the Association was published in ‘Engineering’ of February 19th, 1954 and a statement in the report that “ possibly the success of this Association may suggest the formation of similar bodies in other parts of the Country ” can be accepted as a very worthy compliment to the founder members of our Association.

Now that the Association has been functioning for a period of six years, perhaps it is easy for us to accept its remarkable success and the large increase in membership just as a matter of course but one can scarcely think it possible that any of our founder members had forseen such an outstanding development.

Our first and very sincere congratulations must go to Mr. Cooch, our Honorary Secretary who initiated the idea and who has attended 100% of all the functions of the Association.

At that time he would be faced with uncertainties such as “ would there be a sufficient number of retired electrical engineers living in Worthing and its surrounding districts to form such an Association, and if so, would there be a sufficiently large percentage prepared to become members We are pleased to remember that Mr. Cooch considered the possibilities reasonably good and that he invited six electrical engineers to discuss its formation.

We extend our hearty congratulations to those members on their decision to go forward and to the sixteen members of the l.E.E. who attended a meeting at a later date and decided to extend invitations to retired corporate members of the Institutions of Civil and Mechanical Engineers and engineers with similar qualifications. This important decision by our founder members has not only made it possible for the Association to increase its membership to 85 but it has extended the facilities of the Association to retired men with experience in one or more of all the important branches of engineering.

Mr. Cooch has given detailed particulars of the activities of the Association all of which have been well supported by members.

In conclusion, I am taking this opportunity of expressing my sincere thanks to Presidents, Officers, Members of ‘Committee, Guest Speakers, Members who have given talks and submitted reports on visits, Officials at Works we have visited, Mr. & Mrs. Cooch for their kindness in arranging for all Committee Meetings to be held at their home and Mrs. Cooch for her kind hospitality on all such occasions, Mr. Kemsley and Mr. Winkworth for their assistance with films, slides and projector equipment, the ladies for giving us their support at the Annual Suppers and Summer Outings, and members for a good percentage attendance at all functions of the Association.

DAVID WATSON, President, 1956-57.


The Association was formed in 1951 and is for retired engineers, mainly those who are, or who have been, corporate members of the Institutions of Civil, Electrical, Mechanical, Structural or Municipal Engineers, and who reside in the Worthing district.

Object—The main object of the Association is to help engineers to associate with other retired men with similar interests.

Meetings with Talks—These are held during alternate winter months. The Talks are usually on engineering subjects, and are presented in a manner to interest all the members, irrespective of the branch of engineering in which they have specialised.
At one meeting each season a guest speaker is invited to tell members of new developments in some branch of engineering.

Visits to Works—On alternate months members visit works of interest in the locality.

Annual Supper—This is held early in the winter and lady guests are invited. The supper is followed by a Cine show or lantern slides of holiday scenes or similar subjects.

Summer Outing—Ladies are invited to join the members in an outing to some place of interest in the district.

Membership Book—This contains a list of the Officers, the Rules, Programme for the current season and a list of the members giving a brief description of their work before retirement. It is re-printed annually and a copy supplied to each member.

Record of Activities—Contains a summary of the Talks, a description of works visited and other activities during the season. Several copies are made and circulated to all members in rotation. Back copies are available for loan to members.

Informal Meetings—During the winter season members meet every Monday for morning coffee at a Worthing Cafe where a table is reserved.

Technical Press Notices—References to the Association and its activities are contained in the following technical publications: ‘Engineering’ (February 19th, 1954) ; ‘Chartered Civil Engineer’ (May 1955) ; ‘Chartered Mechanical Engineer’ (September 1955) ; ‘Journal of the Institution of Electrical Engineers’ (Jan. 1956) ; ‘Teknikeren’ (Danish), (October 1955).

On November 21st, 1951, Mr. H. Cooch of 31 Shermanbury Road, Worthing, Sussex, invited six fellow members ot the institution of Electrical Engineers to discuss the formation of an Association of members of the Institution who were retired and resided in the Worthing district. These were Mr. P. H. W. Bush, M.I.E.E., M.I.Mech.E., Mr. W. H. Nottage, B.Sc., M.I.E.E., F.lnst.P., Mr. W. C. S. Phillips, B.Sc., M.I.E.E., F.lnst.P., Mr. H. C. Sharp, M.I.E.E., Lieut. Col. R. E. Stace, R.E., A.M.I.E.E. and Mr, A. E. Tattersail, M.I.E.E.

Draft Rules, as prepared by Mr. Cooch, were discussed and it was agreed that all retired corporate members of the l.E.E. residing in the Worthing district, should be invited to attend a general meeting.

On December 14th, 1951, sixteen members of the l.E.E. met to discuss the matter and as a result the Association was formed, rules approved and Officers elected.
The members present at the meeting were :—
Mr. P. F. W. Bush, M.I.E.E., M.I.Mech.E.
Mr. H. Cooch, A.M.I.E.E.
Mr. H. M. Dowsett, M.I.E.E., F.lnst.P.
Mr. W. R. Hackworth, M.I.E.E.
Mr. C. H. J. Hook, A.M.I.E.E.
Mr. H. F. Jay, A.M.I.E.E.
Mr. A. C. Kemsley, M.I.E.E.
Mr. A. E. Loos, M.I.E.E.
Mr. W. H. Nottage, B.Sc., M.I.E.E., F.lnst.P.
Mr. W. C. S. Phillips, B.Sc., M.I.E.E., F.lnst.P.
Mr. J. H. Robinson, A.M.I.E.E.
Mr. Boydell Shallis, M.B.E., A.M.I.E.E.
Mr. H. C. Sharp, M.I.E.E.
Lieut. Col. R. E. Stace, R.E., A.M.I.E.E.
Mr. H. C. Tisdall, B.Sc., Wh.Sc., A.M.I.C.E., A.M.I.E.E.
Mr. A. H. St. C. Watson, M.I.E.E.

The Officers elected were : President—Mr. W. C. S. Phillips ; Hon. Secretary—Mr. H. Cooch ; Hon. Treasurer—Mr. H. C. Sharp ; Committee—Mr. P. F. W. Bush, Mr. H. M. Dowsett, Mr. A. C. Kemsley, Mr. W. H. Nottage, Mr. Boydell Shallis and Mr. A. H. St. C. Watson.

At this meeting it was agreed that retired corporate members of the Institutions of Civil and Mechanical Engineers, and engineers with similar qualifications, should be invited to join the Association.

As a result of the decision to admit engineers other than electrical, the membership increased rapidly to 35 and the Committee decided to hold a further meeting, on February 22nd, 1952, so that new members could join in the discussions on the future activities of the Association.

At this meeting it was agreed to have meetings with Talks and Visits to works on alternate months during the winter.

The Committee, under the Chairmanship of the President, Mr. W. C. S. Phillips, organised the activities accordingly and Annual Suppers and Summer Outings, to which ladies are invited, and informal weekly meetings for morning coffee were also included in the Programme.

By August 1957 the membership had reached 85. Of these 30 were corporate members of the Inst. C.E., 40 —I.E.E., 23—I.Mech.E., 7—I.Struct.E. and 3—I.Mun.E.

The area covered by the present membership includes Worthing, Rustington, Pulborough, Steyning, Shoreham, Hove and Brighton.


1951-52 W. C. S. PHILLIPS, B.Sc., M.I.E.E., F.Inst.P.
Formerly Head of the Electrical Engineering Dept., Borough Polytechnic, London. Mr. Phillips gave his Presidential Address at the First Annual General Meeting in October, 1952. He reviewed his experiences over fifty years and pointed out the advantages of technical education.

1952-53 E. J. BUCKTON, B.Sc., Wh.Ex., M.Inst.C.E., M.I.Mech.E., M.Cons.E.
Formerly Senior Partner, Rendel. Palmer & Tritton, Consulting Engineers, Westminster. Mr. Buckton did not give an Address on his election as President in October, 1952, but in December, 1952, he gave a Talk on a ‘Driving Efficiency Scheme’. Mr. Buckton presented to the Association the first printed Membership Book which is so much appreciated by members.

1953-54 J. BIBBY, D.Eng., M.Sc., M.I.Mech.E.
Formerly Chairman, Wellman, Bibby & Co., Consulting Engineers, Marine Engines, London. In his Presidential Address he gave interesting details of his engineering experience, especially in reference to consulting work on marine engines. Mr. Bibby was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Engineering by Liverpool University in July, 1955. The Association lost a keen member and true friend when he died in September, 1956.

1954-55 H. M. DOWSETT, M.I.E.E.. F.Inst.P.
Formerly Research Manager and later Principal, Marconi School of Wireless Communications. His Address was entitled ‘Some Reminiscences of an early Pioneer in Radio Communications’ and gave information on his association with Signor Marconi dating back to 1897, and the use of Radio in the Boer War. During his year of office members were able to congratulate Mr. and Mrs. Dowsett on their Colden Wedding, July 25th, 1955.

1955-56 H. J. NOWLAN, I.S.O., M.Inst.C.E., M.I.Struct.E.
Formerly Deputy Civil Engineer – in – Chief, Admiralty, London. His Presidential Address was entitled ‘Notes on the Mulberry Harbour’. Mr. Nowlan was on the Committee dealing with this outstanding engineering achievement in World War 11 and was able to give members first-hand information.

1956-57 D. WATSON, M.Sc., Ph.D., A.C.C.I., D.I.C., Wh.Ex., M.I.Mech.E.
Formerly Principal of Gloucester Technical College. The title of Dr. Watson’s Address was ‘The old order changeth, yielding place to new’. He gave a brief survey of engineering from the very early days to the present atomic work. Also some very interesting information on the possibilities and limitations of space travel.

IV OFFICERS, 1951 TO 1957

Hon. Secretary

1951 to present date H. COOCH, A.M.I.E.E.
Formerly Senior Technical Officer, Research and Development of electrical equipment for Aircraft, R.A.E. Farnborough and London.

Hon. Treasurers

1951-52 (3 months) H. C. SHARP, M.I.E.E.
Formerly Managing Director, Considere Con- Crypto Ltd.

1952-56 BOYDELL SHALLIS, M.B.E., A.M.I.E.E. Formerly Prncipal Assistant, Chief Engineers Dept.,
London County Council.

1956 to present date N. FREER KELSEY, B.Sc. A.M. I.C.E.
Formerly Mechanical & Electrical Engineer, Chinese Engineering & Mining Company.

Hon. Auditors

1952 Prof. A. H. JAMESON, M.Sc., M.lnst.C.E. Formerly of King’s College, London.

1952-55 T. CURR, O.B.E., M.I.Mech.E., M.I.C.E. Formerly General Manager, South Metropolitan Gas Co., London.

1955 to present date W. H. NOTTAGE, B.Sc., M.I.E.E., F.lnst.P.
Formerly Chief of Patents Dept., Marconi Wireless Telegraph Co., and Associated Companies.

V COMMITTEE, 1951 TO 1957

1951-52 Boydell Shallis, M.B.E. A.M.I.E.E. Elected Hon. Treasurer, 1952.

1951-52 P. F. W. Bush, M.I.E.E., M.l.Mech.E. Formerly Transmission Engineer, S.W. England & S. Wales, Central Electricity Board.

1951—53 H. M. Dowsett, M.I.E.E., F.inst.P. President 1954-55.

1951-53 A. H. St. C. Watson, M.I.E.E. Formerly Deputy Sub-Area Manager, North- met Sub-Area, Eastern Electricity Board.

1951-54 A. G. Kemsley, M.I.E.E. Formerly Distribution Engineer, City of London Electric Lighting Co.

1951-54 W. H. Nottage, B.Sc., M.I.E.E., F.inst.P. Elected Hon. Auditor, 1955.

1952-55 W. Fyffe, M.lnst.C.E. Formerly Chief Engineer, Port Trust, Madras, India.

1952-55 H. R. Lewis, M.lnst.C.E., M.I.Struct.E. Formerly Consulting Engineer.

1953-56 D. Watson, M.Sc., Ph.D., M.l.Mech.E. President 1956-57.

1954-56 E. Young Harrison, M.lnst.C.E., A.M.l.Mech.E. Formerly Engineer and Manager, Scotland and N. Ireland, Limmer and Trinidad Lake Asphalt Co. Ltd., Glasgow.

1953-57 H. S. Scott, A.M.I.E.E. Formerly with South Eastern Electricity Board.

1954-57 H. T. Moody, M.I.E.E. Formerly Chief Engineer, Rangoon Electric Tramway & Supply Co.

1955 R. C. Moon, A.M.I.C.E.. M.I.Mun.E., A.M. I.W.E. Formerly Borough Surveyor & Water Engineer, Nuneaton.

1955 H. E. Steinberg, M.lnst.C.E., M.I.Struct.E. Formerly Managing Director, Considere Constructions Ltd.

1956 C. M. Bunbury, I.S.O., M.lnst.C.E. Formerly Chief Engineer and Government Inspector of Railways and Harbours, Kenya and Uganda.

1956 L. S. Winkworth, A.M.I.E.E., A.M.I.Mech.E. Formerly with Holloway Bros. (London), Ltd.


From 1951 to 1953 meetings were held at Oliver’s Cafe, South Farm Road, Worthing, 1954 to 1956 at the Baronial Hall, Norfolk Hotel, Worthing and 1956 to 1957 at the Conference Room, Adult Education Centre, Worthing.

The Talks are quite informal and presented in a manner to interest all members irrespective of the Branch of engineering in which they had specialised.

They are mostly given by members but once each season a guest speaker is invited to tell members about modern developments in some branch of engineering.


1953 “Television” by Mr. Alan C. Spicer of Messrs. Barnes and Spicer Ltd., Radio Specialists. Mr. Spicer described how television works and gave a brief history of its development. By the use of a television receiver and separate oscillator he illustrated the operation of the various controls.

1953 “Atomic Power” by Dr. W. D. Allen, B.Sc., Ph.D. of the Atomic Research Establishment, Harwell. The development of nuclear power and some of the problems involved in its application, were explained.

1954 “New Refuse and Salvage Piant” by Mr. C. H. Kempton, A.M.I.C.E., F.R.I.C.S., M.I.Mun.E., Borough Engineer and Surveyor of Worthing. Mr. Kempton described the new plant then under construction for Worthing Corporation.

1954 “The efficient Use of Fuel” by Eng. Rear Admiral Sir Sidney O. Frew, K.B.E., C.B., Chief Fuel Engineer, Ministry of Fuel and Power. Sir Sydney remarked on the development made in the use of fuel during the past 250 years and described some of the present day developments in appliances for domestic and commercial purposes.

1955 “New Work on Shoreham Harbour” by Mr. Peter A. Scott, B.Sc., M.lnst.C.E., Partner of Sir Wm. Halcrow & Partners, Consulting Engineers, Westminster. Mr. Scott described the alterations to Shoreham Harbour then in hand to make it suitable for larger ships to meet the increase in demand for coal.

1956 ‘‘The Skylark High Altitude Research Rocket” by Dr. E. B. Dorling, Ph.D., B.Sc., of the Guided Weapons Dept., Royal Aircraft Establishment, Farnborough. The Rocket under construction to carry research instruments to an altitude of 100 miles, was described.


“Shoreham and its Harbour, Old and New” by Prof. A. H. Jameson, M.Sc., M.I.C.E. The changes in Shoreham since the 13th Century and the gradual development of the Harbour.

“Driving Efficiency Scheme” by E. J. Buckton, B.Sc., Wh.Ex., M.I.C.E., M.I.Mech.E., M.Cons.E. A scheme evolved and submitted to the Ministry of Transport, to improve car driving on the roads.

“Sand Travel on the Coromandel Coast of India” by W. Fyffe, M.I.C.E. The geology of the district, its rivers, ocean currents and beach travel, and their effect on Madras Harbour.

“Camouflage in War Time” by G. Palmer, B.Sc., F.C.S. The camouflage of Installations against bombing attacks and the camouflage of the aircraft itself during two World Wars.

“Textiles and Textile Machinery” by F. C. Crawshaw, A.M.I.Mech.E, A.T.I. The evolution of the Textile industry from its early beginning in Britain to modern times, illustrated by numerous slides.

“ Demolition and Reconstruction of Rangoon Power Station” by H. T. Moody, M.I.E.E. Mr. Moody, who was Chief Engineer, described how he demolished his Power Station and reconstructed it again before and after the Japanese occupation in the second World War.

“Seadromes” by H. R. Lewis, M.I.C.E., M.I.Struct.E. The design of a floating platform for landing aircraft in mid-Atlantic.

“Production of Gliders for air transport in War Time” by A. E. Hayward, B.Sc. (Former A.M.I.C.E.). Large quantities of gliders were manufactured during the second World War by many firms who were not used to this class of work.

“Railway Electrification at Home and Abroad’’ Dy A. T.Dover, M.I.E.E., A.M.Amer.I.E.E. The various systems in use, their advantages and disadvantages and the system which would be used for future British main line electrification.


“Siting and Design of Harbours” by E. J. Buckton, B.Sc., M.I.C.E. This Talk was on the subject of Mr. Buckton’s recent Vernon Harcourt lecture to the Institution of Civil Engineers.

“Opencast Coal Mining” by J. C. Melvin, B.Sc., A.M.I. C.E. The process of Opencast Coal Mining mainly in reference to the Northumberland and Durham areas.


A brief description of the Works visited appears in the “Record of Activities” for each year. Apart from the first three visits the Notes for the Record were prepared by the members mentioned.


Goring Automatic Telephone Exchange. This was our first visit and 22 members attended.

Brighton Locomotive Works. Locomotive building has been carried out at these works since 1852.


Lancing Carriage Works. This is the main depot of the Southern Section, British Railways, for the repair of carriages and for the construction of certain parts of new ones.

Brighton Post Office. Notes by F. C. Crawshaw, A.M.I. Mech.E., A.T.I. The chief point of interest was the ‘Transorma’ letter sorting machine which was demonstrated.

Brighton ‘B’ Power Station. Notes by E. Zoller. The Station will eventually have a capacity of 360,000 k.w. At the date of the visit the station was mostly under construction with a small part supplying power.

Beeding Cement Works. Notes by W. Fyffe, M.lnst.C.E. The works belong to the Associated Portland Cement Manufacturing Co. The whole process of the manufacture of cement was demonstrated.


Southdown Maintenance Depot, Portslade. Notes by H.L.Bray, A.M.I.Mech.E. The Depot carries out repair and maintenance work on the coaches, buses, etc. of the Southdown Motor Services Ltd., totalling about one thousand vehicles.

Allan West & Co., Brighton. Notes by A. T. Dover, M.I.E.E., A.M.Amer.I.E.E. The firm manufactures control gear for all sizes and types of electric motors.

Ricardo & Co., Shoreham. Notes by Dr. D. Watson, M.Sc., Ph.D., M.I.Mech.E. The firm carries out research and experimental work on petrol engines, etc.

Crawley New Town, Sussex. Notes by J. F. Breeze, B.Sc., M.I.Mech.E., A.M.I.C.E. This town was built to provide work and housing for 60,000 people from the London area.


C.V.A, Jigs, Moulds and Tools Ltd, Hove. Notes by C. W. Cole, A.M.l.E.E. Manufacturers of high-grade Machine Tools, Small Tools, Lathe and Drill Chucks, Jigs, Moulds, etc.

Refuse Disposal Plant, Worthing. Notes by H. Bolton, M.I.Mech.E. These are the works previously described in a Talk by Mr. C. H. Kempton, the Borough Engineer.

Gas Works, Portslade. Notes by E. A. Harmes, M.I.Cas E., M.I.Struct.E. This is a modern plant with continuous action vertical retorts.

Printing Works, Southern Publishing Co., Brighton. Notes by Dr. E. Hughes. D.Sc., Ph.D., M.I.E.E. The firm publishes several daily and weekly papers and produces all kinds of printed work.


Budds Farm Sewage Disposal Works, Havant. Notes by W. Fyffe, M.lnst.C.E. These works were completed in 1953 and were the most modern in the country.

F. G. Miles Ltd., Shoreham Airport. Notes by J. Drummond Frier, A.R.C.Sc., D.I.C., Wh.Ex., F.R.Ae.S., M.I.Mech.E. Mainly manufacturers of special development components for various aircraft firms.

Kemp Town Brewery, Brighton. Notes by C. Palmer. B.Sc., F.C.S. The whole process of brewing by this old established firm, from preparation of the malt to the bottling, was demonstrated.

New Harbour Work, Shoreham. Notes by C. M. Bunbury, I.S.O., M.lnst.C.E. Members examined the work which had been described to them in a previous Talk by Mr. P. A. Scott of Sir Wm. Halcrcw & Partners, the Consulting Engineers.


Brighton Corporation Waterworks. Notes by T. Muir Thomson, M.I.Mech.E., M.I.W.E. Two Pumping Stations were visited, one at Falmer with steam-driven pumps and the other at Balsdean with electrically driven pumps.

C.V.A. Jigs, Moulds & Tools Ltd., Hollingbury Works, Brighton. Notes by C. W. Cole, A.M.l.E.E. This is the second factory of the well-known tool manufacturers, visited by members.

Repair Shops, S.E. Electricity Board, Brighton. Notes by C. F. Wells, M.I.E.E., A.M.I.I.A. Repairs are carried out on domestic electrical appliances of over a million consumers in the South Eastern Area.

Clark’s Bakeries, Hove. Notes by J. A. Troughton, A.M.l.E.E. The bakery is equipped with modern machinery and supplies bread, cakes, etc. to the 47 Branches of the firm in the district.


Ladies are invited to the Annual Suppers — so called because it is intended that they shall be quite informal.

The first Annual Supper was held at the Regency Restaurant, Worthing on the 28th January, 1953, with the President, Mr. E. J. Buckton, in the Chair. Members and their guests numbered 42. After supper cinema films of views at home and abroad were shown by Mr. A. G. Kemsley.

The second Annual Supper was held at Mitchell’s Arcade Cafe, Worthing on the 26th February, 1954, with the President, Dr. J. Bibby, in the Chair and 49 present. After supper coloured travel slides were shown by Mr. J. L. Hitchman (arranged by Mr. Kemsley).

The third Annual Supper was held at the Berkeley Hotel, Worthing on the 26th November, 1954, with the President, Mr. H. M., in the Chair and 55 present. Followed by a cinema show of holiday films by Mr. Boydell Shallis.

The fourth Annual Supper was held at the Berkeley Hotel, Worthing on the 24th November, 1955, with the President, Mr. H. J. Nowlan, I.S.O., in the Chair and 62 present. This was followed by a description of the North of Scotland Hydro Electric Scheme with cine-films in colour, by Mr. A. G. Kemsley.

The fifth Annual Supper was held at the Chatsworth Hotel, Worthing on the 29th November, 1956, with the President, Dr. D. Watson, in the Chair and 65 present. A presentation of handbag and flowers was made to Mrs. H. Cooch to mark appreciation of her help to the Association. Coloured slides of British holiday scenes were shown by Mr. and Mrs. W. F. Moore (relations of Mr. H. Bolton).


Ladies are invited to the Summer Outings.

1952. Lancing College.
The first summer outing was on the 27th )une, 1952, when a party of 35, including lady guests, visited Lancing College and the Chapel. The Head Master, Mr. F. C. Doughty, M.B.E., M.A., welcomed the party and joined us for tea in the Sports Pavilion at the conclusion of the visit.

1953. Houses of Parliament.
On the 11th June, 1953, a party of 23 visited the Houses of Parliament by the invitation of Brigadier 0. L. Prior-Palmer, D.S.O., who however was unable to meet us. After being conducted over both Houses the party had lunch at the Paviour’s Arms, Page St., Westminster.

1954. Cowdray Park.
On the 25th June, 1954, a party of 41 went by coach to Cowdray Park, where Mr. H. R. Lewis conducted us round the ruins of the old Cowdray House. Tea was taken at the Manor House Cafe, Midhurst.

1955. Petworth House.
On the 16th June, 1955, two coaches were required to take a party of 61 to Petworth House, where we saw a wonderful collection of paintings, furniture and sculpture in the State Rooms. Tea was served at the 13th Century Hotel, The Angel, Petworth.

1956. Guildford Cathedral and Compton.
Our first all day outing was on the 1st June, 1956, when a party of 51 visited Guildford New Cathedral in the morning, a picnic lunch on the Hogs Back and Compton in the afternoon, followed by tea at Newlands Corner Hotel.

1957. Penshurst Place and Tunbridge Wells.
On the 4th June, 1957, a party of 62 visited Penshurst Place after a picnic lunch in the Park. Tea was taken at the Cadena Cafe, Tunbridge Wells followed by a visit to the Pantiles.


The last five years of my work before retirement was spent in London during the War so it is easy to understand that towards the end of that period my one wish was to get away from it all. For a few years after retirement I enjoyed having no definite occupation and then boredom set in. I began to realise how much I missed the pleasure of engineering work and especially the contact with other engineers. It was apparent to me that there were many other retired engineers in the district who felt the same way and so the Association was formed.

To help engineers to associate with other retired men having similar interests, seems to be the best way to describe in a few words the object of our Association.

Many of our members have made friends through the Association and many have found old friends and associates amongst the members. These incidents are continually occurring — a member finds another who worked for the same firm, lived in the same town, was at the same college and even school but the most striking incident occurred at one of our Suppers when two members discovered that they were at the same college and their wives at the same school.

Members can help to foster the friendly spirit by making themselves known to other members, especially new ones, who live near to them or have the same hobby or recreation.

Another way is to drop in for coffee at Fullers any Monday morning during the winter. When this idea was first started Mr. Fyffe and I were the only two for some time but now it has become a very popular feature of the Association.

Most of us who have been retired for some time are amazed at recent developments in engineering — jet engines, television, atomic energy and even space travel for research instruments. We may not know very much about these subjects but are very interested nevertheless, hence the introduction of the yearly guest speaker. We should be very pleased to welcome friends, or better still, sons of members to tell us about new developments in any branch of engineering.

The Association does not pretend to find jobs for members but some enquiries are received, although not always appropriate. A London newspaper recently rang up to say it was putting on an Atomic Exhibition and asked if one of our members would like to spend three weeks on a stand. The condition was that he must be able to answer questions on Atomics.

The reference to the Association in ‘Engineering’ and Institution Journals has had far reaching effects and letters have been received from different parts of the country, and abroad. An engineer in Scotland asked if particulars of the Association could be sent to his father who had retired and lived in the South . . . ‘it’s just what he needs’. Perhaps the most interesting was a letter from a retired Danish Civil Engineer who said he was concerned with the ‘problems and conditions’ of retired engineers and asked for information. Later an account of our Association appeared in the Danish Technical Publication ‘Teknikeren’.

The most popular ‘Talks’ at our meetings appear to be those when the member just talks to us about his subject and it is for this reason I usually tell members that their ‘Talk’ should not be a ‘Technical Paper’.

From the letters sent to me by the Managers of Works we have visited there appears to be no doubt that they are really pleased to see us. Suggestions by members for visits to works are always welcome.

In the Foreword, Dr. Watson has thanked the ladies and I would like specially to emphasise this. The ladies do help very much to foster that friendly spirit amongst members and I would just like to remind them that an easy way is to turn out their menfolk on Monday mornings to join the coffee meetings.

And last of all I would like to thank all the members for their help — always willingly given — and for their appreciation of the Association so often expressed — it is the members themselves who make the success of an Association such as ours.

Gadd’s Printing Works, Ltd., Worthing