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Working at AP Leamington
I started employment with Automotive Products (AP) in June 1976 (a very hot year!) with the grand title of ‘Group Photographic Controller’ at their headquarters in Tachbrook Road. A vast site Such ...
Sir Frank Whittle, Inventor of the Jet Engine
Frank Whittle was born in Earlsdon, Coventry, in 1907. His family moved to Leamington Spa where he attended Milverton School and then Leamington College for Boys. He worked in his ...
Royalty Comes to Rugby
Royal visits don’t just happen … this much is revealed in the Willans Works engineering archives held here at Warwickshire County Record Office. Within the collection, a variety of records ...
The British Thomson-Houston Factory Site in Rugby today
Today (2015) most of the original British Thomson-Houston (BTH) factory buildings have been demolished but a few remnants have been incorporated into GE (interestingly a descendant of GEC who used to ...
War Memorial for British Thomson-Houston Workers in Rugby
This memorial commemorates former workers at the British Thomson-Houston factory who gave their lives during the two world wars. The inscription reads: ‘In Memory of the Men of the British ...
British Thomson-Houston Works at Rugby
The British Thomson-Houston (BTH) Company was founded in 1894 and production started at Rugby in 1900. The main factory buildings (on what used to be Glebe Farm) opened beside the railway ...
An Apprenticeship at British Thomson-Houston in the 1950s
I started a five year student apprenticeship at Rugby, straight from school and home in Sussex in 1956. Competition for a place was strong. I believe there were 1,200 apprentices ...
Willans Works Huts for Belgian Refugees
The project to catalogue the records of the Rugby engineering firm Willans and Robinson has uncovered many topical references to the First World War. Following the German invasion of Belgium on ...
Automotive Products, Leamington Spa
I started work with AP in Banbury, which opened in 1962 in 80 acres of land. It was built to increase capacity in the supply of spare and replacement parts, ...
Unlocking the Willans Works Engineering Records Via Cataloguing and Volunteers
Cataloguing the Willans Works archive material at Warwickshire County Record Office is revealing some interesting facts, partly because of the efforts of volunteers who are helping with the collection. Their ...
The Willans Works
The records of a Rugby-based engineering firm that pioneered the manufacture of steam engines and turbines for electricity generation are being catalogued by Warwickshire County Record Office in a project ...
A 1950s Apprentice in Rugby. Lodgings
Just two months into my first year at Coton House I was just getting used to motorbiking to work when the Suez crisis erupted and petrol rationing was introduced. Funds ...
A 1950s Apprentice in Rugby. Life in Town
After realising that I needed help from the apprentice welfare office, I was worried. I had in my mind that by failing to be self-supporting my whole future again threatened ...
Eagle Engineering of Warwick: Origins and History of the Original Site
Joseph Brookhouse (1759-1831) was in partnership with William Parkes and Samuel Crompton and together they owned a worsted manufacturing business in The Saltisford Warwick. The factory was established c. 1792 ...
An American in Rugby
Labour shortages caused by men joining the Armed Forces during the First World War led to many companies seeking help from overseas. One such organisation was Rugby-based engineering firm Willans ...
The Starley Family: Cycle Innovators in Coventry
A 500-mile cycling and walking network is being set up in the West Midlands and named the ‘Starley network’. This prompted me to investigate further: there’s a Starley statue I ...
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