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David Bain

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David Bain (1855-1933)

1933 Obituary [1]

DAVID BAIN, C.B.E., was for many years carriage and wagon superintendent of the Midland Railway, prior to his retirement in 1919, and was responsible for many improvements in the rolling stock of that company.

Born at Isauld, Caithness, in 1855, he served his apprenticeship from 1875 to 1879 with Messrs. Neilson and Company, Glasgow.

From 1883 to 1887 he was engaged as a draughtsman in the Gateshead locomotive works of the North Eastern Railway. He then became manager of that company's carriage works at York, and in 1890 was appointed carriage and wagon superintendent. At this period dining and sleeping cars were beginning to make an appearance, and Mr. Bain was one of the most active in designing vehicles of these types.

After his appointment in 1902 as carriage and wagon superintendent of the Midland Railway, he designed and had built at Derby one of the largest carriage and wagon lifting shops in the world, remodelled the sawmill, and introduced electric power throughout the carriage and wagon works.

During the War Mr. Bain served on the staff of the Director-General of Munitions Supply and was awarded the C.B.E. for his services.

Mr. Bain had been a Member of the Institution since 1902.

He died on 18th September 1933.

1933 Obituary[2]


It is with regret that we note the death of Mr. David Bain, C.B.E., V.D., at his home at Bickley, Kent; on September 18. Mr. Bain, who was in his 79th year, had occupied the position of carriage and wagon superintendent of the old Midland Railway, at Derby, for 17 years. A Scotsman by birth, he received his education first at Isauld School, and afterwards at Reay School, Caithness. After a preliminary training in general joinery at Caithness, he was apprenticed to Messrs. Neilson and Company, locomotive builders, Glasgow, in 1875. After spending four years in the works, he was engaged in the drawing office for another four years. While at Glasgow he studied mechanics, machine construction and steam engineering under Professor Rowden at the Andersonian College, now embodied in the Royal Technical College, Glasgow. In 1883, Mr. Bain came south to take up the position of leading locomotive draughtsman in the locomotive works of the North Eastern Railway, at Gateshead. Four years later he was promoted to the position of works manager of the carriage works of the North Eastern Railway, at York, and was appointed assistant carriage and wagon superintendent upon the retirement of Mr. Elliott, in 1890.

On February 1, 1902, Mr. Bain was offered, and accepted, the position of carriage and wagon superintendent of the Midland Railway Co, at Derby, and continued to hold this appointment until his retirement in 1919; he was succeeded by his assistant, Mr. R. W. Reid. During his tenure of office, Mr. Bain visited the United States on two occasions, on behalf of his Company, to study American methods. For many years an enthusiastic volunteer, Mr. Bain was successively attached to units in Lanarkshire, Durham, the West Riding of Yorkshire,, and Derbyshire, and was the recipient of the Volunteer Officers’ Decoration. He retired in 1907 with the rank of Major, and for some years afterwards occupied a seat on the Territorial Force Association of the County of Derby. During the war, he was attached to the Ministry of Munitions, and for his services to his country was made a C.B.E. Mr. Bain became a member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in 1902."

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