• Welcome to this forum . We are a worldwide group with a common interest in Birmingham and its history. While here, please follow a few simple rules. We ask that you respect other members, thank those who have helped you and please keep your contributions on-topic with the thread.

    We do hope you enjoy your visit. BHF Admin Team

Midland Red Early Days

JulesB

New Member
Re: Hugh Hamilton Gregory.

2010-06-24 11:11:14
[We are almost certain that Hugh Hamilton Gregory (1881 – 1953) was the hitherto elusive "H H Gregory" who was employed as Midland Red motor engineer in November 1905. Here is a brief biography. As usual, corrections, additions and comments are welcome. It would be good to learn more about Hugh Gregory's career. And a picture would be good! :rolleyes:]


Hugh Hamilton Gregory (HHG) was born at Poplar, London, on 27 June 1881. His parents were Alfred John Gregory (AJG) and Jennie Hamilton Gregory née James (JHG).

AJG (c 1860 – 14 July 1927) was born at Studley Park, Kew, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. He was the son of engineer George Johnston Gregory (born c 1807) and Ann(ie) Gregory. AJG trained as a medical doctor (he was to acquire the qualifications MD, BS and DPH). In 1880 AJG married JHG at St Luke's church, Lower Norwood, Kent. JHG was born about 1859 in Chicago and later became a British subject. By 1881 they were living with AJG's parents (also older sister Florence A Gregory and younger brother photographer Frederick Gregory) at 13 Clifton Road, Deptford, Kent.

By
census night (5 April) 1891, HHG and his parents were living at 184 Knights Hill, Norwood, London. Later that year the family moved to Cape Town, Cape Colony (Cape of Good Hope), South Africa. AJG was involved in the administration of the 1891 Cape Colony census, and was registered in Cape Colony as a doctor in 1892. In July 1895 George Turner MB MRCS LRCP (c 1845 - 12 March 1915) was appointed Medical Officer of Health (MOH) for Cape Colony, and soon afterwards AJG was appointed his assistant. After Turner became MOH for Transvaal in 1900, AJG was formally promoted to MOH for Cape Colony. By this time he had become very prominent in Cape Colony affairs. Van Heyningen (1989) describes him as "the most influential medical figure at the Cape until Union in 1910". He continued in his position until perhaps 1913, and moved back to Britain some time after retirement. He died at Metcalfe's Royal Hydro, Richmond, Surrey. Further information about AJG's work in Cape Colony can be found in the 1906 and 1989 references (see "Sources" below).

HHG attended South Africa College, Cape Town, and matriculated in 1899. On 9 October of that year he entered St Johns College, Cambridge University, where he remained for eight terms, leaving in 1902 apparently without a degree. He qualified as a mechanical engineer, and in November 1905 he was employed by the fledgling Midland Red as Engineer, replacing George Pollard who had moved on to the London Motor Omnibus Co Ltd as Second Engineer. By the end of 1907 Midland Red had decided to dispense with motor buses, and probably in the early part of 1908 HHG left Midland Red for a position with the Royal Automobile Club (RAC). By 1910 he was lodging at 29 Cleveland Road, Barnes, London. In the 1911 census HHG described himself as "Technical Advisor to the Secretary of RAC". In this role he registered several patents in 1910-1914 for "motor vehicle windscreens", "fuel consumption measuring device" and "motor vehicle trailers". By 1912 he was Head of the Technical Department of RAC, and was an associate member of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers. In the first quarter of 1913 he married Ruth Gladys Shoyer (born at Clapham Junction second quarter 1894) at Richmond, Surrey. His wife was the eldest child of Post Office telegraph operator Richard Howell Shoyer (born c 1871) and Ruth Alice Shoyer n
ée Cowper (b c 1873). Possible offspring include: John H Gregory (born fourth quarter 1913 at Richmond, Surrey); Mary R Gregory (born third quarter 1915 at Richmond, Surrey); Barbara A Gregory (born first quarter 1920 at Lewes, East Sussex); Julian B Gregory (born second quarter 1921 at Reigate, Surrey). By 1914 the family were living at "Muizenberg", 20 (?) Gerard Road, Barnes. [Muizenberg, now a beach-side suburb of greater Cape Town, was a holiday town for the Cape Colony élite in the late 19th and early 20th centuries; AJG and JHG had owned a holiday home there.] Early in World War 1, HHG became involved in the technical organisation of Red Cross hospitals and ambulances. By January 1916 he was appointed advisory officer to the Board of Customs and Excise in relation to tariffs on motor car imports, though he remained Head of the RAC Technical Department. At this time it was said of him in the press: "Nobody has a more complete and thorough knowledge of the motor industry from the inside".

We hear nothing about HHG's later life and career until his death in the second quarter of 1953 at Winchester, Hampshire.

Sources:

Cape of Good Hope. Report of the Select Committee on the Contagious Diseases Act. Cape Town: Cape Times Ltd, 1906.
The Straits Times (4 January 1916).
[Peter Hardy]. Fleet History PD2. The Birmingham and Midland Motor Omnibus Company Limited. Part I 1904-1933. London: PSV Circle and Omnibus Society, 1961.
E B van Heyningen. "Agents of Empire: The Medical Profession in the Cape Colony 1880-1910". Medical History. Volume 33 (pp 450-471). 1989.
Lloyd's research in British censuses, registers, etc. [Thanks Lloyd for that painstaking work! :)]
Heather Vallance's research in Cape Town records and elsewhere. Her Sarah Ann Smith website is well worth a visit: it contains a page on AJG. It appears that Sarah Ann Smith's brother Hugh Smith (who was living in Poplar by 1882) was HHG's godfather. [Thanks Heather for your kind (and continuing) assistance! :)]

I know this post was a long time ago, but if you're still interested in Hugh Hamilton Gregory please get in touch. He was my grandfather :)
 

BrianDicks

proper brummie kid
Re: Hugh Hamilton Gregory.

Hi, I know this is a bit cheeky, but have you a photo at all of Hugh Hamilton Gregory that you would be willing to share please ? I am one of the previously mentioned Wythall researchers on early Midland Red and having spent 'EONs' on these early gents, are now looking for suitable pictures to illustrate what was going on around this time. Thank you
 

mikejee

Super Moderator
Staff member
Rose
All the images were lost after action that was taken after some hacking a few years ago (this is noted on the front page of the forum). Many of them have been replaced, and we are trying to replace more, but it is a a lot of work. If you could point us to the particular post(s) in question (there are 1400 on this thread) then possibly we could do something about them .
 

Laurielythgoe

New Member
Re: Women Bus Drivers (Again!)

Hi i know the post about Doreen Barnett was awhile ago but I've only just come across it
the woman in the video is neither Doreen or her daughter i can confirm this as I'm one of Doreens granddaughters
Laurie Lythgoe
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
I have just come across this news item in Bus and Coach Magazine


Johnsons Coach & Bus Travel has relaunched its X20 bus service with three new Enviro400 double-decks in an order worth more than £600,000.



The X20 route from Stratford-upon-Avon to Birmingham was started by Johnsons 100 years ago with a horse and cart transporting goods. In the 1920s they began moving fare-paying passengers and 10,000 commuter journeys are now made on the route every month

Surely the X20 is the successor to the 150 Birmingham to Stratford operated by Midland Red and Stratford Blue. Can anyone throw any light on this claim?
 

Lloyd

master brummie
Johnson's first motor bus, a 1922 Garner, was signwritten "Birmingham - Stratford - Warwick - Leamington", and until the 1930 road traffic act there was no licensing to stop companies competing over the same route.

Johnsons 1922 Garner.jpg
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
Johnson's first motor bus, a 1922 Garner, was signwritten "Birmingham - Stratford - Warwick - Leamington", and until the 1930 road traffic act there was no licensing to stop companies competing over the same route.

Thanks Lloyd. I have always been impressed by Johnson's modern buses and coaches when I have travelled on them.
 

norton bob

proper brummie kid
hi everyone I'm looking for help the picture I have posted is from 1955 and my first home that's me mom and me standing at the back of our bus, my mom assures me it was a midland red as it was dark red with midland red down the sides before me mom and dad painted it blue (said it looked more homely) I know it's not much to go on but I'd love to know the make and model so I can try and find a picture of what I lived in, in my early years thank you, Bob
 

Attachments

  • img053.jpg
    img053.jpg
    42.1 KB · Views: 33

Lloyd

master brummie
Yes definately a Midland Red, chassis was their own make (assembled at Bearwood Garage in those days) which used the name "SOS", the meaning of which is unclear, and the body is to their design but could have been built by one af several coachbuilding companies. Without knowing a registration number, or seeing the front, it is difficult to pinpoint the exact model but I would think it was one of the early 1930s "ON" models, like the one illustrated below. When disposed of they were £5 without engine & gearbox, or £25 to drive away.
 

Attachments

  • 1515  HA 9466.jpg
    1515 HA 9466.jpg
    61 KB · Views: 36

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
there you go bob i had a feeling that lloyd would know and what a great photo to go with the info...thanks lloyd:)

lyn
 

norton bob

proper brummie kid
Lloyd you've just made my day thank you so much and thanks Lyn, my moms birthday today (83) so we all went out for a meal can't wait to show her this pic. and Lloyd your pretty much spot on my dad paid £28 for the bus and drove it on the site in 1954 where we lived then in Grosvener road Aston once again thank you, Bob
 

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
oh im so pleased for you all bob...that old bus must have meant a lot to your family..if i were you i would print that photo off and frame it for your mom...just a thought:)

lyn
 

norton bob

proper brummie kid
sorry about putting that in twice just got so excited I'm proud of me mom and dad and the fact I started off in a bus. I have just called my sister to have a look to show mom that photo can't say thank you enough Bob
 

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
bob dont worry about the double post i can delete one of them.. i totally understand how excited we can get when finding a photo that means so much..i am still getting over finding one i was after for years and i found it 5 years ago..still brings a tear to the eye even now but i have it framed and hanging on the wall..have to say i think its wonderful how your parents adapted that bus...thats what i call true brummie grit...bit late but best wishes to your mom on her birthday

lyn
 

DavidGrain

master brummie
If only I had had £28 in 1954. Oh and somewhere to park the bus. And a driving licence, I was only 10 at the time. I saw many of those single deckers but not sure if I ever rode on one. I remember the pre-war FEDDs, the double deckers, they were on all our local services before the SHA double deckers came in about that time.
 

oldMohawk

master brummie
I can remember sometimes riding in them on my way home from Handsworth Tech around 1950. I used to get a No 5 tram from Soho Rd and wait at a bus stop in Alma St. When we saw one coming up the hill from Summer Lane we were embarrassed at having to get on an old 'boneshaker' and not a modern bus .... but you're like that when you're young !
 

norton bob

proper brummie kid
hi David Oldmohawk, my dad drove that bus onto a site in Grosvener road Aston it cost 8s 1d rent per week and we lived in it for three happy years . Hi Lloyd I've put two pictures in of my uncles bus that was next door to us again would you have any idea of what it was many thanks Bob
 

Attachments

  • img050.jpg
    img050.jpg
    39.7 KB · Views: 28
  • img052edit.jpg
    img052edit.jpg
    45.7 KB · Views: 30

Lloyd

master brummie
No sorry, its only a short bus and not one I recognise - certainly not Midland Red. Its of a type called 'normal control' where the driver sat behind, rather than alongside, the engine so is possibly from a small country operator who didn't need large buses. I've overlaid the two photos to give a better idea of the bus's size, but need more visible to be able to identify it.

ODD caravan 3.jpg
 

Hugh Gregory

New Member
Re: Hugh Hamilton Gregory.



I know this post was a long time ago, but if you're still interested in Hugh Hamilton Gregory please get in touch. He was my grandfather :)
HHG was also my grandfather. HHG separated from his wife and their daughters went with her while his only son Julian lived with him. Julian was a Chartered Mechanical Engineer and I am a Chartered Civil Engineer (ex Aston Uni) so engineering is in the blood. Another Julian Gregory was born in Birmingham just two months ago and is HHG's great great grandson. HHG in later years lived in Hampshire next door to my parents and had dogs, foxes and badgers in his house - they went in and out thro' the dog flap. I do have a photo of him as an old man if anyone wants a copy - not sure how well it will scan. I also have the original USA patent docs for his single wheel trailer dated 21/08/1917 and I wondered if the buses ever pulled these trailers. I know in rural Hampshire in the war the buses were powered by gas and I believe towed trailers ( albeit not single wheel ones). Incidentally I also have an original order for and brochures for these single wheel trailers. HHG appeared to be quite good at marketing and also took out patents around the world. Apparently HG was not easy to work with which was said about his father Alfred and probably the next two generations as well!! HHG's sofa is currently in Birmingham complete with badger claw marks in its leather. I am intrigued who JulesB is!!
 
Top