Meek, Marshall

SUBJECT AREA: Ports and shipping
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b. 22 April 1925 Auchtermuchty, Fife, Scotland
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Scottish naval architect and leading twentieth-century exponent of advanced maritime technology.
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After early education at Cupar in Fife, Meek commenced training as a naval architect, taking the then popular sandwich apprenticeship of alternate half years at the University of Glasgow (with a Caird Scholarship) and at a shipyard, in his case the Caledon of Dundee. On leaving Dundee he worked for five years with the British Ship Research Association before joining Alfred Holt \& Co., owners of the Blue Funnel Line. During his twenty-five years at Liverpool, he rose to Chief Naval Architect and Director and was responsible for bringing the cargo-liner concept to its ultimate in design. When the company had become Ocean Fleets, it joined with other British shipowners and looked to Meek for the first purpose-built containership fleet in the world. This required new ship designs, massive worldwide investment in port facilities and marketing to win public acceptance of freight containers, thereby revolutionizing dry-cargo shipping. Under the houseflag of OCL (now POCL), this pioneer service set the highest standards of service and safety and continues to operate on almost every ocean.
In 1979 Meek returned to the shipbuilding industry when he became Head of Technology at British Shipbuilders. Closely involved in contemporary problems of fuel economy and reduced staffing, he held the post for five years before his appointment as Managing Director of the National Maritime Institute. He was deeply involved in the merger with the British Ship Research Association to form British Maritime Technology (BMT), an organization of which he became Deputy Chairman.
Marshall Meek has held many public offices, and is one of the few to have been President of two of the United Kingdom's maritime institutions. He has contributed over forty papers to learned societies, has acted as Visiting Professor to Strathclyde University and University College London, and serves on advisory committees to the Ministry of Defence, the Department of Transport and Lloyd's Register of Shipping. While in Liverpool he served as a Justice of the Peace.
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Principal Honours and Distinctions
CBE 1989. Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering 1990. President, Royal Institution of Naval Architects 1990–3; North East Coast Institution of Engineers and Shipbuilders 1984–6. Royal Designer for Industry (RDI) 1986. Royal Institution of Naval Architects Silver Medal (on two occasions).
Bibliography
1970, "The first OCL containerships", Transactions of the Royal Institution of Naval Architects.
FMW

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

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