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Vickers
Vickers
was a famous name in British engineering that existed through many companies from 1828 until 1999.

Contents

1 History

1.1 Early history 1.2 Vickers, Sons & Company 1.3 Vickers, Sons & Maxim 1.4 Vickers
Vickers
Limited 1.5 Reorganisation 1.6 Merger with Armstrong Whitworth 1.7 Nationalisation 1.8 Vickers
Vickers
plc 1.9 Current status of Vickers

2 See also 3 Bibliography 4 Footnotes 5 External links

History[edit] Early history[edit] Vickers
Vickers
was formed in Sheffield
Sheffield
as a steel foundry by the miller Edward Vickers and his father-in-law George Naylor in 1828. Naylor was a partner in the foundry Naylor & Sanderson and Vickers' brother William owned a steel rolling operation. Edward's investments in the railway industry allowed him to gain control of the company, based at Millsands and known as Naylor Vickers
Vickers
and Company. It began life making steel castings and quickly became famous for casting church bells. In 1854 Vickers' sons Thomas (a militia officer known familiarly as 'Colonel Tom') and Albert (la) joined the business and their considerable talents – Tom Vickers
Vickers
as a metallurgist and Albert as a team-builder and salesman – were key to its subsequent rapid development. "Its great architects," the historian Clive Trebilcock writes, "Colonel T.E. (1833–1915) and Albert (1838–1919) Vickers... provided both inspired technical leadership... and equally astute commercial direction. Both men were autocrats by temperament, but neither shunned advice or avoided delegation; each, but particularly Albert, had a marked gift for the selection of talented subordinates."[1] In 1863 the company moved to a new site in Sheffield
Sheffield
on the River Don in Brightside. Vickers, Sons & Company[edit] The company went public in 1867 as Vickers, Sons & Company and gradually acquired more businesses, branching out into various sectors. In 1868 Vickers
Vickers
began to manufacture marine shafts, in 1872 they began casting marine propellers and in 1882 they set up a forging press. Vickers
Vickers
produced their first armour plate in 1888 and their first artillery piece in 1890. Vickers, Sons & Maxim[edit]

Vickers, Sons & Maxim's Naval Construction Works (ca. 1900)

Name plate: Vickers, Sons & Maxim Wolseley Siddeley

Vickers
Vickers
bought out the Barrow-in-Furness
Barrow-in-Furness
shipbuilder The Barrow Shipbuilding Company in 1897, acquiring its subsidiary the Maxim Nordenfelt Guns and Ammunition Company.[2] at the same time, to become Vickers, Sons & Maxim. Ordnance and ammunition made during this period, including World War I, was stamped V.S.M. The yard at Barrow became the "Naval Construction Yard". With these acquisitions, Vickers
Vickers
could now produce a complete selection of products, from ships and marine fittings to armour plate and a whole suite of ordnance. In 1901 the Royal Navy's first submarine, Holland 1, was launched at the Naval Construction Yard. In 1902 Vickers
Vickers
took a half share in the famous Clyde shipyard John Brown and Company. Further diversification occurred in 1901 with the acquisition of a proposed business which was incorporated as The Wolseley Tool and Motor Car Company and in 1905 the goodwill and patent rights of the Siddeley car. In 1911 a controlling interest was acquired in Whitehead and Company, the torpedo manufacturers. Vickers
Vickers
Limited[edit] Main article: Vickers
Vickers
Limited

1914 advertisement in Jane's presenting Vickers
Vickers
broad naval capabilities

In 1911 the company name was changed to Vickers
Vickers
Ltd and expanded its operations into aircraft manufacture by the formation of Vickers
Vickers
Ltd (Aviation Department) and a Vickers
Vickers
School of Flying was opened at Brooklands, Surrey on 20 January 1912. In 1919, the British Westinghouse electrical company was taken over as the Metropolitan Vickers
Vickers
Electrical Company; Metrovick. At the same time they came into Metropolitan's railway interests. Reorganisation[edit] A reorganisation during 1926 led to the retention of the rolling stock group: Metropolitan Carriage wagon and Finance Company and The Metropolitan - Vickers
Vickers
Company and the disposal of: Vickers-Petters Limited, British Lighting and Ignition Company, the Plywood department at Crayford Creek, Canadian Vickers, William Beardmore and Co, and Wolseley Motors.[3] Merger with Armstrong Whitworth[edit] Main article: Vickers-Armstrongs In 1927, Vickers
Vickers
merged with the Tyneside
Tyneside
based engineering company Armstrong Whitworth, founded by W. G. Armstrong, to become Vickers-Armstrongs, Ltd. Armstrong Whitworth
Armstrong Whitworth
had developed along similar lines to Vickers, expanding into various military sectors and was notable for their artillery manufacture at Elswick and shipbuilding at a yard at High Walker
High Walker
on the River Tyne. Armstrongs shipbuilding interests became the "Naval Yard", those of Vickers
Vickers
on the west coast the "Naval Construction Yard". Armstrong Whitworth Aircraft was not absorbed by the new company. In 1928 the Aviation Department became Vickers
Vickers
(Aviation) Ltd and soon after acquired Supermarine, which became the " Supermarine
Supermarine
Aviation Works (Vickers) Ltd". In 1938, both companies were re-organised as Vickers-Armstrongs
Vickers-Armstrongs
(Aircraft) Ltd, although the former Supermarine
Supermarine
and Vickers
Vickers
works continued to brand their products under their former names. 1929 saw the merger of the acquired railway business with those of Cammell Laird
Cammell Laird
to form Metropolitan Cammell Carriage and Wagon (MCCW); Metro Cammell. Nationalisation[edit] In 1960 the aircraft interests were merged with those of the Bristol, English Electric Company
English Electric Company
and Hunting Aircraft
Hunting Aircraft
to form the British Aircraft Corporation. This was owned by Vickers, English Electric and Bristol (holding 40%, 40% and 20% respectively). BAC in turn owned 70% of Hunting. The Supermarine
Supermarine
operation was closed in 1963 and the Vickers
Vickers
name for aircraft was dropped in 1965. Under the terms of the Aircraft and Shipbuilding Industries Act BAC was officially nationalised in 1977 to become part of the British Aerospace
British Aerospace
group, which exists today in the guise of BAE Systems. The Aircraft and Shipbuilding Industries Act also led to the nationalisation of Vickers' shipbuilding division as part of British Shipbuilders. These had been renamed Vickers
Vickers
Armstrong Shipbuilders in 1955, changing again to Vickers Limited
Vickers Limited
Shipbuilding Group in 1968. This division was privatised as Vickers
Vickers
Shipbuilding and Engineering Ltd (VSEL) in 1986, later part of GEC's Marconi Marine. It remains in operation to this day as BAE Systems
BAE Systems
Submarine Solutions. Vickers
Vickers
plc[edit]

The Vickers
Vickers
works in Cross Gates, Leeds

Main article: Vickers
Vickers
plc With their steelworking operations also nationalised into British Steel Corporation the remnants of Vickers
Vickers
became Vickers
Vickers
plc. In 1986, Vickers
Vickers
acquired the armaments manufacturer Royal Ordnance Factory, Leeds, which became Vickers
Vickers
Defence Systems. Other acquisitions included automotive engineers Cosworth
Cosworth
in 1990, waterjet manufacturer Kamewa in 1986 and Norwegian marine propulsion and engineering company Ulstein in 1998. 1998 also saw the sale of Rolls-Royce Motors and Cosworth
Cosworth
to Volkswagen Group
Volkswagen Group
for £430 million, beating out BMW's offer of £340 million. Current status of Vickers[edit] Vickers
Vickers
remained independent until 1999 when the then Vickers plc
Vickers plc
was acquired by Rolls-Royce plc
Rolls-Royce plc
who sold the defence arm to Alvis plc, which became Alvis Vickers. Vickers plc
Vickers plc
and the subsidiaries retained by Rolls-Royce were renamed Vinters in March 2003.[4] The Vickers
Vickers
name lived on in Alvis Vickers, until the latter was acquired by BAE Systems in 2004 to form BAE Systems
BAE Systems
Land Systems. BAE Systems
BAE Systems
announced on 31 May 2012 that the ex Vickers
Vickers
Defence Systems factory on Scotswood Road, Newcastle would close at the end of 2013. The callsign Vickers
Vickers
is still used by the corporate flight department of BAE Systems
BAE Systems
Maritime Submarines, based at Walney Airfield, Cumbria.[5] See also[edit]

Canadian Vickers, a Vickers
Vickers
subsidiary from 1911 to 1944 Oto Melara, an Italian weapons manufacturer, originally a joint venture between Vickers
Vickers
and Terni Steelworks Supermarine Vickers
Vickers
hardness test Vickers
Vickers
machine gun

Bibliography[edit]

Vickers: Against the Odds 1956–1977 by Harold Evans.[6] Anon (1898), Vickers, Sons and Maxim Limited: Their Works and Manufactures, "Engineering", London Richardson, Alex (1902), Vickers
Vickers
Sons and Maxim Ltd: Their Works and Manufactures, Ships, Guns, Engines etc. Offices of Engineering, 35 and 36, Bedford Street, Strand, W.C., London; illustrated with 70 engravings (photo engravings) Scott, J.D. (1962), Vickers: A History, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, London

Footnotes[edit]

^ Trebilcock, Clive. The Vickers
Vickers
Brothers: Armaments
Armaments
and Enterprise 1854–1914. London: Europa Publications, 1977 pp. 27, 33, 35, 43, 45–8, 127–9. ^ Submarine Heritage Centre ^ City Notes The Times, Saturday, 30 April 1927; p. 18; Issue 44569. ^ Rolls-Royce plc. The "Principal subsidiary undertakings" Retrieved 12 June 2006 Archived 5 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine. ^ Member of staff ^ Detail taken from a copy of Vickers: Against the Odds 1956–1977 published by Hodder and Stoughton London in 1978

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Vickers.

Companies House accessed 22 June 2006 Vickers
Vickers
Air-raid Shelter Vickers
Vickers
Photographic Archive Biography of Thomas and Albert Vickers The Vickers
Vickers
company canteen at Crayford, Kent, expected to become a restaurant with flats above

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As of 1 July 1935

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Companies and former companies based in Sheffield, England (or with a significant presence)

Modern manufacturing and distribution companies

Ancon Clark Wilson Benesch Berkart Henry Boot Bramah Engineering Catterly Laser Cutting Co. Corus Group Davey Markham JF Finnigans Firth Rixson Fletchers Bakery Sheffield
Sheffield
Forgemasters
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Company M J Gleeson Group Plc Hendersons (Sheffield) Ltd Kelham Island Brewery) Land Pyrometers Arnold Laver Northern Foods Outokumpu
Outokumpu
formerly (Avesta Polarit)t/o / BSC Stainlesst/o ROM Reinforcement Ronseal
Ronseal
Paints SIG plc Tinsley Bridge Wincro Metals

Modern retail and service industry

Atkinsons Stores HSBC Irwin Mitchell John Lewis PlusNet Powerminster Sheffield
Sheffield
Hallam University Tuffnells Parcel Express University of Sheffield Williams Fastners WANdisco Zoo Digital

Traditional heavy industry (steel and engineering)

BOC t/o British Steel Corporation
British Steel Corporation
p Brown Bayley Steels Newton, Chambers & Company NCK-Rapier Cammell t/o Coopers (Fastners) Chesterfield Cylinders Cravens Daniel Doncasters Ltd Davey McKeet/o Davey Lowevyt/o Trafalgar House Engineering t/o Edgar Allen & Company t/o English Steel Corporationn Firth Brown Steelsn Firth Vickers Laycockst/o Samuel Sheffield
Sheffield
Forgemasters Thomas Ward Tinsley Wire Industries Ltd (TWIL) t/o Sanderson Kayser

Cutlers - silversmiths - surgical instruments

Arthur Price B.Braun-Downs Surgicalt/o Richard Carr (Silversmiths) James Dixon & Co. Durham Duplex Harrison Bros & Howson Hutton Mappin and Webb
Mappin and Webb
t/o Martin Hall Needham, Veall & Tyzack Joseph Rodgers Swann Morton Surmanco Skidmore Taylors Eye-Witness Ltd Thornton (Impants) Vinerst/o Walker & Hallt/o Thomas Wostenholm

Tool manufacturers

Dormer (Tools)r Footprint Tools Henry Taylor Tools Neepsend Stanley Tools
Stanley Tools
(Sheffield)r Atkinsons (Saws) Easterbrook Allcard & Company G & J Hall Ketona (Shears) Joseph Marples Moore & Wright James Neil (Tools) Niloc Osborne Mushett Paddley & Venables Record Ridgeway Rabone Chesterman Shardlows The Sheffield
Sheffield
Twist Drill Company Spear & Jackson Thomas Turner & Co. (Files & Knives) Tyzacks Sons & Turner(Saws) Thomas Flinn & Co. Standall Tools Steadfast (Tools) Tyzack Machine Knives

Miscellaneous formerly Sheffield
Sheffield
based companies

Batchelorst/o Dyson Refractoriest/o Stones Breweryt/o Trebor Bassett
Trebor Bassett
Sweetst/o Richardson Sheffieldt/o Thorntons
Thorntons
Chocolates r S.H. Wards Breweryt/o

Defunct

English Steel Corporation Samuel Fox and Company Hadfields Limited Samuel Osborn & Company Jessop Saville & Company Sheffield
Sheffield
Coal Company Simplex Cars Steel, Peech and Tozer United Steel Companies Vickers Limited
Vickers Limited
Vicker, Son & Maxim William Jessop & Sons Yorkshire Engine Company

See also

Economy of Sheffield List of companies in Sheffield

t/o - Taken over, n - Nationalised, p - Privatised, a - Active, d - Defunct, h - High tech, e - E-Commerce, f - Financial services r

.