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Thomas Meik


1812 - 1896

Civil Engineer. Born in Duddingston (Edinburgh) into a family which came from Coupar Angus (Perthshire), Meik was educated at the High School and University of Edinburgh. He became an apprentice under John Steedman, who was then building the Hutcheson Bridge in Glasgow. Meik then took a position with the Ordnance Survey of Ireland and, from 1833-45, worked for the New River Company under William Chadwell Mylne (1781 - 1863) bringing clean water to London. He was also responsible for various bridges in SE England. Between 1845 and 1867, he worked for the River Wear Commission and was tasked with the building of docks, bridges and warehouses. In 1868, Meik began a partnership which enabled him to leave operations in Sunderland in the charge of a former apprentice and move to Edinburgh. In Scotland he was responsible for new docks at Ayr and Burntisland. He took his sons Patrick (1851 - 1910) and Charles (1853 - 1923) into the firm, which went on to build harbours at Bo'ness and Eyemouth, together with a branch railway to the latter. This firm continues to operate today as the Halcrow Group, taking its name Sir William Halcrow, who joined Meik as an apprentice. It is now one of the UK's largest engineering consultancies with a turnover of £400 million (2008) and more than 7000 employees.

Meik retired in 1888. He died at his home in Newbattle Terrace, Edinburgh, and lies buried in Duddingston Kirkyard.


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