Burton upon Trent and District Engineering Society


Programme for 2021 season:

The plan is to commence our normal meetings with the AGM on 22nd October.

Thursday 24th September:

Virtual ZOOM webinar

“Wells and Water – Burton upon Trent" by Martyn Ralph

Everyone knows Burton for its beer, but long before Bass, Worthington and the others arrived in town, Burton was better known for its water. 

From the Middle Ages until the 16th Century when Henry VIII removed all sites of miraculous cures, Burton was a place of pilgrimage for those with skin and eye complaints.

This is a brief walk through the history of water in the town, and why Burton Water is so important for Pale Ale Breweries worldwide.

An email link to Zoom will be sent to all members who decided to Zoom with us previously. If any member who did not Zoom previously would like to, please confirm by email or telephone.

22nd October – AGM

Back-up will be a Zoom Webinar presentation by Richard Farman on the 1916 Zeppelin raid on Burton.

Until further notice all meetings and talks will be via Zoom

Wednesday 18th November at 7.30pm:

The annual social evening will take place Via Zoom, when the speaker will be Cath McAteer talking about the Russian winter and Christmas.

3rd December:

Space Engineering at the University of Leicester by Alexander Lodge – Leicester University Space Centre

7th January:

The ARC 2019 Portsmouth to Gran Canaria and then St Lucia – by Ian Jenkinson

Ian Jenkinson, a civil engineer and member of Carsington Sailing Club, will give a presentation about his experience of sailing across the Atlantic in the ARC2019. He embarked from Portsmouth to deliver Challenger 2, a 77 foot racing yacht, to the start line but, en-route, they encountered and sailed through a category 1 hurricane in Biscay. In Gran Canaria he transferred to a 46 foot Beneteau to sail with friends to the finish line in St Lucia, coming 3rd in the “Open All” class. 
He says “If I can do it then any club sailor can also make the crossing. All it requires is planning and the relevant RYA courses, they really do prepare you very well for this”. Ian will talk through how they prepared, what happened and what it felt like to arrive safely in the Caribbean.

28th January:

The Panama Canal – a history, construction, transit, its expansion and economy, an illustrated Zoom presentation by Peter Pallett, following his canal transit on MV Azamara in March 2015.

There will be a short history of the construction and ownership of the original canal and how it works, with views from Peter’s experiences during a daylight complete transit, including access to the ship’s bow-camera video. The construction of the expansion project, opened in June 2016, is also illustrated along with an explanation of its unique water saving system.

The talk concludes with the economics of the Canal and its competition.

Peter Pallett BSc, CEng, FICE, FCS is a retired chartered civil engineer having been a well known consultant, trainer and expert witness in his field of above ground temporary works. He has presented papers worldwide and, being based in Lichfield, is already known to the Burton-upon-Trent and District Engineering Society.

 25th February:

The equipment that makes up the canal – Sally Boddy – Canal and River Trust

Sally Boddy is the Regional Engineer for the Canal and River Trust in the West Midlands. With an area, which extends from Llangollen to Rugby, she will explore and introduce us to the many types of structures and marvels which combine to form the nation’s 2000 miles of canal network. She will provide an interesting insight into how these structures are managed and inspected, and will provide an insider view of how, in particular, the length of the Trent and Mersey Canal through Burton upon Trent is recorded.

25th March:

The modern whisky distillery – Rob Davies  Project Engineer Manager and Steve Mason – Project Manager

The talk will provide a brief history of Briggs in the town and then move on to Whisky Distilleries and new developments.

22nd April:

Josiah Wedgwood and the Lunar Society – a social network of the 18th century by Bernard Lovatt of Etruria Industrial Museum.

The Lunar Society was an 18th century social network of friends that many regard as being the founders of the modern world. Through his friendship with Erasmus Darwin, Bolton, Watt, Priestly and others Wedgwood was able to improve the materials and the manufacturing methods for pottery.

 The Etruria Industrial Museum is the home of Jesse Shirley’s Bone and Flint Mill which is situated at the junction of the Trent & Mersey and Caldon Canals close to the site of Wedgwood’s Etruria manufactory. It is the only remaining steam driven potters’ mill in the world and is used to illustrate the development in mechanics and science that not only advanced the design and manufacture of ceramics but played an important part in the industrial revolution.

6th May:

An introduction to the HS2 scheme and the phase 2a infrastructure to be constructed between Fradley and Crewe, presented by Nick Hilton (phase 2a Head of Early Works) and Ed Ashcroft (Phase 2a Lead Engineer).
Some of the engineering and environmental considerations related to the design, construction and operation of high speed rail infrastructure will be presented drawing on some examples of how similar construction challenges have been addressed on HS2 Phase One.