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British Industrial History

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John Brunton

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John Brunton (1812-1899).

1812 Born the son of William Brunton and his wife Ann Elizabeth Button

1840 Birth of their only child, William Alexander Brunton

1899 Obituary [1]

JOHN BRUNTON, born in Birmingham in the year 1812, began his engineering career as a pupil in the works of Harvey and Co of the Hayle Foundry, Cornwall.

On the expiration of his pupilage he was engaged for two years on the construction of a colliery railway in South Wales.

He was next employed for several years under George and Robert Stephenson on the London and Birmingham Railway, and on the Manchester and Leeds Railway.

After a brief period of work on the Maryport and Carlisle line, Mr. Brunton practised on his own account in Scotland for four years.

He then came south again and carried out work for Hutchinson and Ritson, contractors, in connection with railways in Wiltshire, Somersetshire and Dorset.

During the Crimean War he was engaged under I. K. Brunel in the erection of army hospital buildings in Turkey, and in the provision of water-supply and landing-piers for them.

In 1857 Mr. Brunton was appointed Chief Resident Engineer on the Scinde Railway. The line to be constructed was from Karachi to Kotri, a distance of 108 miles, and the work was commenced in April, 1858, and completed in 1862.

In the following year Mr. Brunton presented to the Institution an account of the construction of the line, for which he was awarded a Telford Medal and Premium.

His next work was the survey of the Indus Valley Railway, on the completion of which, in 1866, he returned to England.

In 1850 Mr. Brunton took an office in Westminster, where he practised for twenty years. During that time he acted as engineer to some slate quarries in Wales and carried out various tramway and other works. The last years of his life were spent in retirement at Leamington, where he died on the 7th April, 1899, at the age of 86. Mr. Brunton during his residence in London frequently attended the meetings of the Institution.

He was elected an Associate on the 3rd February, 1857, and was transferred to the class of Members on the 21st April of the same year.

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