Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

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William Roberts (of Millwall)

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1856. Improvements in pumps.
1861.

Engineer of Millwall, Poplar, E., London (1866)

1852 George William Lenox, of Billiter-square, in the city of London, Chain Cable Manufacturer, and William Roberts, of Millwall, Poplar, Foreman to Messrs. Brown, Lenox, and Co. of Billiter square aforesaid, applied for letters patent for the invention of improvements in machinery for raising and lowering cables and other chains [1].

1852 William Roberts, of Millwall, Poplar, Foreman to Messrs. Brown, Lenox, and Co. of Billiter-square, applied for letters patent for the invention of improvements in machinery for stopping and lowering cables and other chains[2].

1857 Double action twin pump and usction plate invented by W. Roberts of Millwall Cable Works described and illustrated [3]. It was made by Brown, Lenox and Co of Millwall. An example was used in the yacht Undine, and another was used by Young, Son and Magnay to pump out their graving dock at Limehouse.

1862 Tested his pumps for use in a ship-borne fire engine[4]

1862 A self-propelling steam traction and fire engine was made by Mr. W. Roberts, of Messrs. Brown, Lenox, and Co.'s works, Millwall, for Messrs. C. J. Mare and Co[5]. It was the first self-propelled fire engine built in Europe. It had three wheels, and attained a speed of 18 mph. It could also be used for winching purposes[6]

1863 Made a fire engine called "Princess of Wales"


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. London Gazette 22 October 1852
  2. London Gazette 22 October 1852
  3. The Practical Mechanic's Journal, 1 Dec 1857
  4. The Engineer 1862
  5. The Engineer 1862
  6. 'British Steam Fire Engines' by Ronald Henderson, Amberley Publishing, 2016. This book includes a contemporary photograph of the fire engine.