Harland and Wolff - Shipbuilding and Engineering Works

Alec Blair (Foreground), Maurice Magowan (Background) - Electrical Drawing Office Circa. 1980

Electrical Drawing Office EL/DO

When one realizes that the electrical generating capacity on one of the large ships we build is sufficient to meet the needs of a town the size of Donaghadee, or a rural area like Tandragee, then one has some idea of the scope of the work of the Ship’s Section of the Drawing Office who have to produce the necessary electrical installation drawings.

In the preparation of drawings the Ship’s Section, under Section Leader Jim Baxter, works in close co-operation with Eric Gunion’s Forward Planning Section to ensure that as much as possible of the electrical installation can be incorporated during the weldment stage of ship construction.

Right-hand men in the Section are Geoff Kennedy and Frank Ellis. Geoff is a “hi-fi” enthusiast whose off-duty aim is to reproduce sonic perfection. Frank, an ex-Merchant Navy man, now happily anchored at home after seven years spent at sea in the Far East, knows from experience what a reliable electrical supply means at sea.

In waters somewhat nearer home - Grove Baths to be exact - Ken Page practises life-saving. Ken recently completed the Candidate Teachers’ Course at the Belfast School of Life-saving and by his enthusiasm is hoping to enrol many volunteers for the next Course.

ED/DO houses three members of the Clan Campbell. Billy, Jim (Senior) and Jim (Junior), all unrelated. The latter is guitarist in the “Cascades” Group, well known at the H&W Staff Club dances. Jim (Senior), a Bangorian, spends all his “leisure” time at the moment on house restoration and redecoration.

Clerk Jimmy Rourke, is a dedicated radio “ham”, and has spoken to people in almost every part of the world. Jimmy, who has chatted to that Royal “ham” King Hussein, has an ambition to “get through” to either Clipperton Island, in the Pacific, or to the South Sandwich Islands, near the Antarctic Continent, two of the few places with which he has not yet made contact.

The D.O’s other clerk, Roy Beers, is something of an expert judge of race horses and has helped many of them into the world. Most of his spare time, since boyhood, has been spent in and around stables watching and working with blood stock.

Apprentices John Beckett, Eric Gray and Jim Owens are all working hard for their final examinations, though Eric still finds time to clear his head hill- walking in the Mournes.

In the “extra-mural” activities of the draughtsmen, dedicated youth work is not forgotten, and Alec Blair puts much hard work and effort into running the 63rd Belfast Cub Pack at Glencairn.

Friendly rivals and fellow golf club members at Carnalea are draughtsmen Billy Coalter and Jack Crockard. Both aspire to get their handicaps down to single figures, which both believe possible, but not probable. Jack is Hon. Auditor of the ELDO Investment Club, members of which “dabble” in the Stock Market, and asserts — “we are not making a fortune, but we do manage to keep our heads well above water.”

Completing the ED/DO picture are typists Margaret Cleland and Betty Finlay. Both thoroughly enjoy their work, and wouldn’t like to work in any other Department.

Electrical Chief Draughtsman - Jimmy Patterson

Left to right - Geoff Kennedy, Jim Baxter, Jack Fairley ( Eld ships manager ) & Jim Patterson

Top floor of the Administration building - The Electrical Drawing Office overlooked the Queen's Road