James George Weir

1887 - 1973

Industrialist and aeronautical pioneer. Born is Cambuslang (South Lanarkshire), the son of an industrialist and brother of William, who became 1st Viscount Weir (1877 - 1959), Weir trained as a engineer at the Glasgow and West of Scotland Technical College (which eventually became the University of Strathclyde). He joined the army in 1906 but became an enthusiast for flying. He gained one of the first Aviators' Certificates from the Royal Aero Club in 1910. He fought with the Royal Flying Corps (1914-16), was then transferred to special duties within the war office, reaching the rank of acting Brigadier-General by 1918. After the First World War, he remained with the Royal Air Force reserve with the rank of Air Commodore. He was awarded a CMG and CBE for his war service, and was also decorated by France and Italy.

He became a Director of his family engineering firm of G. & J. Weir (based in Cathcart), and with their investment set up the Cierva Autogiro Company, to develop and manufacture the autogyro, a forerunner of the helicopter with an unpowered rotor which gave lift. He was also appointed a Director of the Bank of England in 1935.

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