Forrester, George

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b. 1780/1 Scotland
d. after 1841
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Scottish locomotive builder and technical innovator.
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George Forrester \& Co. built locomotives at the Vauxhall Foundry, Liverpool, between 1834 and c.1847. The first locomotives built by them, in 1834, were three for the Dublin \& Kingstown Railway and one for the Liverpool \& Manchester Railway; they were the first locomotives to have outside horizontal cylinders and the first to have four fixed eccentrics to operate the valves, in place of two loose eccentrics. Two locomotives built by Forrester in 1835 for the Dublin \& Kingstown Railway were the first tank locomotives to run regularly on a public railway, and two more supplied in 1836 to the London \& Greenwich Railway were the first such locomotives in England. Little appears to be known about Forrester himself. In the 1841 census his profession is shown as "civil engineer, residence 1 Lord Nelson Street". Directories for Liverpool, contemporary with Forrester \& Co.'s locomotive building period, describe the firm variously as engineers, iron founders and boilermakers, located at (successively) 234,224 and 40 Vauxhall Road. Works Manager until 1840 was Alexander Allan, who subsequently used the experience he had gained with Forrester in the design of his "Crewe Type" outside-cylinder locomotive, which became widely used.
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Further Reading
E.L.Ahrons, 1927, The British Steam Railway Locomotive 1825–1925, The Locomotive Publishing Co., pp. 29, 43, 50 and 83.
J.Lowe, 1975, British Steam Locomotive Builders, Cambridge: Goose \& Son.
R.H.G.Thomas, 1986, London's First Railway: The London \& Greenwich, B.T.Batsford, p. 176.
PJGR

Biographical history of technology. - Taylor & Francis e-Librar. . 2005.

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