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Aird, Sir John, first baronet (1833–1911), civil engineering contractor, was born on 3 December 1833 in Greenwich, the second son of eight children of John Aird (1800–1876), contractor, and Agnes (d. 1869), daughter of Charles Bennett of Lambeth. His grandfather Robert Aird...

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Brassey, Thomas (1805–1870), civil engineering contractor, was born on 7 November 1805 at Buerton, near Audlem, Cheshire, the son of John Brassey, landowner, and his wife, Elizabeth. He had two brothers and one sister. Brassey attended Mr Harting's school in Chester and then, at the age of sixteen, was apprenticed to a land surveyor and agent named ...

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Foley family (per. c. 1620–1716), ironmasters and government contractors, traces its origins to Richard [ii] Foley (1579/80–1657), baptized on 28 March 1580 at Dudley, Worcestershire. His father, Richard [i] Foley, was a nailer, an occupation which at this date provided a decent living and in which ...

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Griffiths, Sir John Norton-, first baronet (1871–1930), public works contractor, was born on 13 July 1871, at Williton, Somerset, son of John Griffiths (1825–1891), builder, and his wife, Juliet Avery (1831–1926). He was educated at Colet Court, Kensington, and Latymer School, Edmonton. At fifteen he was articled to an architect but soon enlisted in the ...

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Laing, Sir John William (1879–1978), builder and civil engineering contractor, was born on 24 September 1879 at 21 Newcastle Street, Carlisle, the third but only surviving son of John Laing (1842–1924) and his wife, Sarah, née Wood (1845–1924). His father was the son of ...

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McAdam, John Loudon (1756–1836), builder and administrator of roads, was born in the west-coast town of Ayr, at 22 Sandgate, on 21 September 1756, the youngest child and second son of James McAdam of Waterhead (c.1718–1770), and his wife, Susannah Cochrane (...

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McAlpine family (per. c. 1870–1967), civil engineering contractors, came to prominence with Sir Robert McAlpine first baronet (1847–1934). He was born on 13 February 1847 in Newarthill, Lanarkshire, the second of four children and elder son of Robert McAlpine (1816–1853), a colliery manager, and ...

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Peto, Sir (Samuel) Morton, first baronet (1809–1889), contractor for railways and public works, was born on 4 August 1809 at Whitmoor House, Woking, Surrey, the eldest son of William Peto (d. 1849) of Cookham, Berkshire, farmer, and his wife, Sophia, daughter of ...

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Wade, George (1673–1748), army officer and road builder, was the third son of Jerome Wade of Kilavally, co. Westmeath, whose father, William Wade, had served as a major under Cromwell. Wade's first commission, dated 26 December 1690, was as ensign in Captain Richard Trevanion's...