ENGLISH ELECTRIC Busbodybuilders and lots more

English Electric

The English Electric Company Limited
Fate Merged with
General Electric Company plc
Successors General Electric Company plc
British Aircraft Corporation
International Computers Limited
Founded 1918
Defunct 1968
Headquarters Strand, London
Subsidiaries Napier & Son (1942–)
The Marconi Company(1948–)
Vulcan Foundry (1955–)
Robert Stephenson and Hawthorns (1955–)
English Electric Aviation (1958–)
English Electric Leo Marconi(1964–)

English Electric was a 20th-century British industrial manufacturer, initially of electric motors, and expanding to include railway locomotives and aviation, before becoming part of The General Electric Company GEC.

1918 The English Electric Company was formed as a public company, chaired by Sir Charles Ellis, who was also chairman of John Brown and Co. The company acquired: Coventry Ordnance Works and Phoenix Dynamo Manufacturing Co of Bradford.

1919 English Electric acquired Dick, Kerr and Co of Preston, which owned:

Dick, Kerr and Co‘s traction activities were concentrated in Preston and continued there until 1930.

English Electric also bought the Stafford works of Siemens Brothers Dynamo Works.

1920 10,000 employees .

1920 Working arrangement with Siemens Brothers and Co to reduce sales costs.

1921 Formalised the sales arrangement with Siemens Brothers and Co in the form of a joint venture English Electric and Siemens Supplies Ltd which had taken over the sales activities of the company and some of those activities of Siemens.

1924 Siemens Brothers and Co was a substantial shareholder in English Electric Co, as a consequence of the purchase of the dynamo works at Stafford.

1924 tram 57, one of a batch of six 70 seaters built by English Electric

1924 tram 57, one of a batch of six 70 seaters built by English Electric

1925 Had worldwide experience with the Fullagar diesel engine which the company had developed for land use and was proving to be a very reliable means of driving electricity generators

1926 EYB-EE3

1926 Some of the constituent companies, Phoenix Dynamo Manufacturing Co and Dick, Kerr and Co, had built flying boats during WWI. The aircraft department closed after the last English Electric Kingstonflying boat was built.

1927 See Aberconway for information on the company and its history.

1927 Also see Aberconway for information on the company and its history.

1927 One of the UK’s major electrical-machinery and plant manufacturers, others beings GEC, BTH,Metropolitan-Vickers, and C. A. Parsons and Co .

Late 1920s EE was in a parlous financial state. A complex financial reorganisation, apparently backed by American Westinghouse interests, was needed to save it.

1930 The manufacture of electrical equipment was moved to Bradford. Tramcar, bus body, and rolling stock production stayed at Preston.

1930 The man most associated with EE, George Nelson, became managing director.

1930s EE supplied equipment for the electrification of the English Southern Railway system, which gave it a strong position in the traction market.

1931 AEC Regal built with English Electric

1931 AEC Regal built with English Electric1931 AEC Regal with single deck English Electric 30 seat body

1931 AEC Regal with single deck English Electric 30 seat body

1931 AEC Regal-English Electric single deckers 203 (front, JN823) and 204 (back, JN824) thss203d


1931 AEC Regals 204, JN824 with English Electric body


1931 Daimler with English Electric B30D body ss203a


1931 v151-p294 1931 Veteran Southend AEC Regal 203, JN823 English Electric body


1933 EnV156-p626 1933.Double Deck Trolley Bus AEC and E. E. C.

1934. Tram Blackpool 249. Exhibit at Crich Tramway Museum.

1934. Tram Blackpool 249. Exhibit at Crich Tramway Museum.

1935 AEC 661T with English Electric H26-24R body


1935 Leyland TD4 as 115 with an English Electric H26-24R body


1935 Leyland TD4 as 117 with an English Electric H26-24R body.


1935 Leyland TD4 with an English Electric O26-24R body


1935 Leyland TD4 with English Electric body


1935 Leyland TS7 with English Electric C31F body


1935-vintage English Electric-bodied Leyland TD4


1935-vintage English Electric-bodied Leyland TD4a


1936 Leyland Tiger TS7 with English Electric B35C


1936 Leyland TS7 with an English Electric C32F body.


1936 Leyland TS7 with English Electric body


1936 Samuel Ledgard CUG841 seen here at Yeadon is a Leyland TS7 with an English Electric C32F body


1937 British Industries Fair Advert for domestic electrical goods; fuse gear and fuse fittings. Electric Cookers, fires, Water Heaters, Washing Machines, Iron, F.H.P. Motors. High Rupturing Capacity Industrial Fuse Gear. Distribution Boards, Fuse Switchgear, Overhead Busbar System. sub-station Fuse Gear. Rural Distribution Fuse Fittings. Cartridge Fuses. (Electricity: Industrial and Domestic Section – Stand No. Cb.609)

1937 AEC Regents with English Electric L27-26R body


1938 SOS SON with English Electric B38F body


1938 SOS SON f with English Electric B38F body


1938 Leyland TD6c which with an M.C.C.W. H28-24R body


1938 EnV165-p114 1937 Leyland TS8 with English Electric B35C body


1937 English Electric B35C bodied Leyland TS7


1937 AEC-English Electric double decker


1939 Thornes, Bubwith operated this ex-Northern General SE4, CPT921 with English Electric B40F body

1939 Thornes, Bubwith operated this ex-Northern General SE4, CPT921 with English Electric B40F body

1939 Acquired Samlesbury Aerodrome in Lancashire and starts construction of the Handley Page Hampden and Handley Page Halifax.

1940 Daimler COG5 - English Electric H28-26R

1940 Daimler COG5 – English Electric H28-26R1940 Daimler COG5 with English Electric H28-26R body

1940 Daimler COG5 with English Electric H28-26R body

1940 Leyland TB5 - English Electric H28-26R

1940 Leyland TB5 – English Electric H28-26R

WWII: development in the Guided Missiles Division at Luton on analog computers, based on thermionic valve technology and intended for military applications. The machine resulting from this development was code-named the Luton Analogue Computing Engine (LACE).

1942 The company took over Napier and Son, an aero-engine company, and this helped establish the company’s aircraft division. Company factories were converted to build the Handley Page Halifax heavy bomber.

1944 Producing 180 bhp engines for rail cars at the old Willans Works at Rugby.

1945 and after: EE invested heavily in aircraft design. W. E. W. Petter, the chief designer at Westland moved to English Electric to set up the new aircraft division, leading to major successes in the 1950s with the English Electric Lightning interceptor aircraft and the Canberra tactical bomber, which was still flying in 2005 in reconnaissance and other roles with many air forces, including the Royal Air Force.

1946 English Electric Co acquired the holding of Cable and Wireless in Marconi’s Wireless Telegraph Co. This reflected an intention to diversify the business from heavy electrical engineering to (what was seen as) the new field of electronics. As well as the whole of the share capital in Marconi’s Wireless Telegraph Co, this also gave EE 42% of Marconi International Marine Co and the entirety of Marconi Instruments Ltd. Established English Electric Valve Co to hold the ex-Marconi valve business.

1949 the National Physical Laboratory chose the English Electric Co as industrial partner in computer development, following its Automatic Computing Engine (ACE) project; industry was seen to be needed to improve reliability and performance of the machine. The new computer was called the Digital Electronic Universal Computing Engine (DEUCE).

1952 The Nelson Industrial Estate at Kidsgrove, Staffordshire was begun with construction of a building for electrical engineering on West Avenue which was the “main works” of English Electric

1953 Manufacturer of TV sets

1954 Production of the LACE computer was transferred to Kidsgrove but cut short by the increasing competition of digital computers.

1955 the first version of DEUCE was released, built at Kidsgrove.

1955 EE took over the Vulcan Foundry and Robert Stephenson and Hawthorns, both with substantial railway engineering pedigrees. EE also made steam turbines.

1955 Four industrial groups formed to exploit the information being made available by UKAEA on design of nuclear power “furnaces” – Industrial Atomic Energy Group involving AEI and John Thompson with electrical generating expertise from Metropolitan-Vickers and BTH; English Electric Co and Babcock and Wilcox; C. A. Parsons and Co and Head, Wrightson and Co; GEC and Simon-Carves Ltd.

1958 EE’s aviation business was set up separately, as English Electric Aviation Ltd.

1958 Establishment of a joint company with Automatic Telephone and Electric Co and Ericsson Telephones to develop and manufacture transistors in greater quantities called Associated Transistors.

1960 EE tried to take over one of the other major British electrical companies, GEC.

1960 Rights issue, to fund developments in electric power, EE’s share in the purchase of Hunting Aircraft and establishment of Associated Transistors; English Electric Valve Co‘s interests in transistors had been merged into that company also.

Early 1960s Under government pressure EE rationalised its aircraft division, which later became part of the new British Aircraft Corporation (BAC), English Electric having a 40% stake in BAC.

1961 Group with 22 subsidiaries. Employed 84,200 persons in the group

1961 English Electric Co acquired W. H. Dorman and Co.

1962 New wholly-owned subsidiary formed: English Electric Traction to bring all railway related activities under one management. These included The Vulcan Foundry, Robert Stephenson and Hawthorns and W. G. Bagnall.

1962 The Luton factory was closed; computer production was relocated to Stevenage, later to become part of ICL.

1963 New wholly-owned subsidiary formed: English Electric Diesel Engines to bring under central control all of its interests in diesel engines, including those in W. G. Bagnall and the Deltic division of D. Napier and Son .

1963 English Electric’s guided weapons division was taken over by BAC.

1963 LEO Computers was merged into a joint venture with English Electric which was named theEnglish Electric LEO Co.

1964 English Electric LEO Co became a wholly owned subsidiary of the English Electric Co. English Electric’s Marconi computer operations were merged with it, forming English Electric Leo Marconi.

1964 English Electric wash machine 1964 IMG 9474

1964 English Electric wash machine

1966 Acquired Ruston and Hornsby and Davey, Paxman and Co to become part of English Electric Diesel Engines Ltd

1966/7 Acquired J. G. Statter and Co, a small company involved in transformers and switchgear.

1967 English Electric took over transformer and switchgear company Combined Electrical Manufacturers Ltd, at the same time as AEI was also acquiring a company involved in transformers.

1967 Supplied the turbine generators for Retford power station.

1967 in the first deal arranged by the Industrial Reorganization Corporation, English Electric Co took over Elliott Automation to form the leading European group in computing and process control.

1967-1968 Failed bid for EE by Plessey Co.

1968 Details of their Mechanical Engineering Laboratory at Whetstone.

1968 Announce agreement to develop hydraulic turbo-machinery.

1968 English Electric Leo Marconi was merged with International Computers and Tabulators (ICT) and others to form International Computers Limited (ICL).

1968 English Electric Diesel Engines Ltd was renamed English Electric Diesels Ltd, which includedDavey, Paxman and Co, Dorman (Stafford), Napier, Kelvin (Glasgow), and English Electric.

1968 GEC took over English Electric Co

1968 One of the 2 new companies formed to design and build nuclear power stations was namedBalfour English Electric Nuclear

1969 Balfour English Electric Nuclear was renamed British Nuclear Design and Construction.

 Royal Air Force 1939-1945- Bomber Command C1180Royal Air Force 1939-1945- Bomber Command C1180
 Two Hampden bombers 9 April 1940

 Napier Deltic EngineNapier Deltic engine, cut away for display

 De Havilland Vampire T11 (DH-115) Point Cook Vabre

de Havilland Vampire T11


EKD EN80 (5)

 Preserved 1927 EN80 English Electric tram, the last example of a fleet of 20 once used by the Warsaw Commuter Railway

English Electric Canberra PR.9 of the RAF, 2006



English Electric Lightning F6, UK - Air Force AN1564287 Lightning arrowLightning diamondEnglish Electric Lightning formation Ysterplaat Airshow-2006-09-231930 London Post Office Railway 1930 Stock1930 London Post Office Railway Stock

1964 English Electric wash machine 1964 IMG 9474

1964 English Electric wash machine



 British Rail Class 83 E3035 on display at Doncaster Works open day on 27 July 2003.
50035 'Ark Royal' at Doncaster Works
 British Rail Class 50 50035 Ark Royal at Doncaster Works on 27 July 2003.
NZR EO class locomotive 03
Tgr za bell bay
Tasmanian Government Railways Za class locomotive at Bell Bay  in February 1978
1986 C1702 Busselton, 1986
There is so much more, but to much for this blog.
I Finish