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Vernon Ingram Norbury Williams

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Vernon Ingram Norbury Williams (1878-1936)

1936 Obituary [1]

VERNON INGRAM NORBURY WILLIAMS had an unusually wide experience in the production of gauges and small tools for engineering purposes.

He was born in 1878, and in 1892 obtained a scholarship at Manchester Technical School, where he studied until 1895.

He then commenced his apprenticeship at Messrs. Follows and Bate's works, Gorton, where he was engaged on general engineering work and tool-making.

In 1898 he entered Messrs. Sir W. G. Armstrong, Whitworth and Company's works, and was employed on the construction of machinery for gun manufacture, and on hydraulic work. He gained extensive experience as a foreman and later as engineering representative during 1900-2 with Messrs. William Ayrton and Company, Messrs. Vickers, Son and Maxim, and Messrs. Bradbury and Company, Ltd., of Oldham, after which he returned to Messrs. Armstrong, Whitworth as assistant works manager for tools and experimental work.

He held this position until 1915, when he was appointed technical manager of the Small Tools and Gauge Departments.

In 1919, acting on the instructions of Sir Percy Girouard, he converted the firm's shell factory at Openshaw into a new small tools and gauge factory, and became technical manager of the new works and of the Crucible Steel Department. Subsequently he carried out additional duties as chief inspector for the Admiralty at the Openshaw works and also acted in a similar capacity for the Air Ministry.

He also served on four panels and two subcommittees of the British Engineering Standards Association, and was particularly concerned with specifications for taps, dies, milling cutters, and small tools. He also delivered lectures on the subjects of small tools and fine measurements before several engineering institutions.

In 1928 Mr. Williams was appointed works manager of the Engineer's Tools, Saws, and Files Departments at Messrs. Thomas Firth's Atlas and Norfolk Works. Sheffield. Largely owing to his policy the firm, having meanwhile amalgamated with Messrs. John Brown, Ltd., decided to extend the departments, and he was associated with the design, construction, and equipment of a block of new workshops in the Atlas and Norfolk Works, opened in 1934, entirely for the manufacture of small tools, saws, and files.

Mr. Williams was elected a Graduate of the Institution in 1900. He was transferred to Associate Membership in 1904, and to Membership in 1919.

His death occurred in Sheffield on 19th September 1936.

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