Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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William John Thomas Watts

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William John Thomas Watts (1875-1925)

1925 Obituary [1]

WILLIAM JOHN THOMAS WATTS was born in London on 6th February 1875, and received his early education at St. Paul's School, London, and at the Highbury Institute, with further technical studies at the Birkbeck College and at the Central Technical College.

He served his apprenticeship with Messrs. Betts and Co., Ltd., City Road, London, passing through both engineering and commercial departments.

On completing his terns, he spent three years with Messrs. Clark and Stanfield, of Grays, Essex, and then, in 1900, he became works manager with Messrs. R. Moreland and Son, Ltd., engineers, of Old Street, City Road, London.

About four years later he was appointed general manager with Messrs. Thomas Broadbent and Sons, Ltd., of the Central Ironworks, Huddersfield, with whom he remained for eleven years, eventually becoming a director. The designing and building of cranes of various types and of the heaviest capacities were special features of his responsibilities in this position.

Later on he became a director of the Falmouth firm, Messrs. Cox and Co., ship builders and repairers, and he then spent a further two years with Messrs. R. H. Green and Silley Weir, Ltd., ship repairers, Blackwall.

In 1919 he joined the firm of Messrs. Vosper and Co., Ltd., ship builders and engineers, of Portsmouth, as managing director and chairman, and these positions he held at his death. The reconstruction of the Research Ship "Discovery," which was undertaken by Messrs. Vosper and Co., was work to which Mr. Watts devoted for nearly two years his special attention.

His death occurred at Southsea on 22nd October 1925.

He became an Associate Member of this Institution in 1904, and a Member in 1909.

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