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Remembering the Association of Nottinghamshire Engineers and Surveyors

Posted onPosted on 26th Jul
Remembering the Association of Nottinghamshire Engineers and Surveyors

A Nottingham man is keeping alive the spirit of a former association for engineers and surveyors that would have celebrated its centenary in 2022.

Keith W. Vinerd was administrative assistant to the secretaries at the Association of Nottinghamshire Engineers and Surveyors, from 1965 to 1987.

The association was formed in 1922, but ceased around 2005. Highway engineers from all local authority areas in Nottinghamshire had been members over the years and Keith remembers it was a most active organisation in its day, playing a part in county life, both socially and professionally.

To mark what would have been the centenary, Keith has put together a brief summary of the history of the Association of Nottinghamshire Engineers and Surveyors.

He writes:

First known as “Notts.Surveyors’ Association”, the earliest reference states “At a meeting held on the 9th inst. at The Shire Hall, Nottingham of the surveyors to Notts. local authorities called by Mr J. Cracroft Haller, County Surveyor, to consider the questions of road engineering, it was unanimously agreed to form an association to meet regularly to discuss the various problems of roadway and municipal engineering and to attain, if possible, the most economical constructive methods.

Mr Haller was elected president and Mr A. J. Elliott, surveyor to the Carlton Urban District Council, secretary and treasurer.”

The year was 1922 and over the next 80 years informative visits were arranged to numerous projects and works, mainly within Nottinghamshire, and regular annual dinners were held at such venues as Grange Farm, at Toton, The Robin Hood Hotel at Newark, County Hall, and Nottingham Gateway Hotel.

For many years the annually elected post of president was held by the current County Surveyor, such as Mr C. I. Pennington and Mr Idris Jones, the last being Mr W. J. Roe, who held the post for the last few months pending the new appointment of a director of Planning and Transportation following local government re-organisation in 1974.

The post then passed to some of the boroughs such as Mr Peter G. Davison (director of Technical and Leisure Services, Broxtowe Borough Council), Mr Dick Huskinson (Borough Technical Services Officer, Chesterfield Borough Council, Mr Chris Groves (head of Engineering and Property, Gedling Borough Council) and Mr Charles R. Tyrie (director of Technical Services, Rushcliffe Borough Council) and then to bodies outside local government after which membership gradually dwindled.

The last attempt to arrange an Annual Dinner was in 2005 at Mansfield under the presidency of Mr John B. Mattinson, of SC Consulting (Midlands) Limited, which was abandoned due to lack of support.

Previous voluntary secretary and treasurer appointments have included Mr Ted Ashcroft, Mr Garth M. W. Drabble, the late Mr Richard D. Bloor, Mr Kevin Piecza, Mr D. Pat. Baldwin, Mr Tony P. Knowles and Mr Phil. G. Walker and assistants included Mr Derek A. Davison, Mr John C. Miles and Mr Gordon Bailey.

2022 would, therefore, have been 100 years since the association was formed and it seems appropriate to record this milestone.  For most of that period the association provided a forum for engineers and surveyors across the county to make acquaintances, to meet and to learn.

Thanks to the following for helping to compile this summary: P. Baldwin, J. R. Gostick, R. J. Hart, Dick Huskinson, A. P. Knowles, John C. Miles, Paul D. Ogden.