William Preston Bates (1887-1943)
1944 Obituary 
WILLIAM PRESTON BATES was born in 1887, and after a brief preliminary training at the Wilmington Iron Works, U.S.A., served his apprenticeship with Messrs. Babcock and Wilcox, Ltd., from 1906 to 1910, during which period he received his technical education at the Regent Street Polytechnic. He continued with Messrs. Babcock and Wilcox for a further three years, gaining experience in the drawing office and erecting department, and then proceeded to South America where he was employed as a constructional engineer by the Chile Exploration Company.
In 1916 he returned to England and served for three years in the explosives department of the Ministry of Munitions. A year later he was engaged by the Burma Corporation, Ltd., for duties as engineer in Burma and acted as chief engineer from 1927 until 1932, when he returned to this country and went into practice as a consulting engineer, establishing the firm of Knapp and Bates, mechanical and metallurgical engineers, at Harrow. In addition, since 1932 he had been a director of the Denver Equipment Company, Ltd., London, a position which he held up to the time of his death, which occurred on 9th December 1943.
Mr. Bates was elected a Graduate of the Institution in 1909 and was transferred to Associate Membership in 1915.