Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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William George Bishop

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William George Bishop (1874-1946)

1947 Obituary [1]

"WILLIAM GEORGE BISHOP spent nearly the whole of his professional career in South Africa where he was in the service of the Government railways as a locomotive engineer for thirty-eight years.

He was born in 1874 and served his apprenticeship from 1889 to 1895 in the Swindon locomotive shops of the Great Western Railway, meanwhile attending the railway company's technical classes. After some experience as a draughtsman in Canada and the United States he began his long connection with the South African Railways in 1896, and was employed in a similar capacity under the chief locomotive superintendent, Cape Government Railways, for five years.

In 1903 he was made district locomotive superintendent at Port Elizabeth, and took over the duties of principal of the Cape Government technical classes in that area. After holding a similar position at De Aar he returned to Port Elizabeth as assistant superintendent.

During the war of 1914-18 he served in the Engineering Corps of the Union Defence Force with the rank of captain. Subsequently he was transferred to Bloemfontein as mechanical superintendent on the staff of the assistant general manager with supervisory control over the East London and Port Elizabeth system. His final position, which he held from 1926 until his retirement eight years later, was that of locomotive superintendent at Durban.

Mr. Bishop, whose death occurred on 8th May 1946, was elected a Member of the Institution in 1908. He was also a Member of the Institute of Transport, who awarded him the Railway Engineering Gold Medal in 1921, being the first member to be thus honoured."

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