This year marks The Welding Institute’s centenary but the origins actually lead back to an inaugural meeting held in 1922. On the 26 January 1922, 20 men met together at the Holborn Restaurant in London to converse on the establishment of a new welding society.
This meeting, which was organised by Mr Charles Raggett, saw 16 of the men sign the Memorandum of Association, of whom just seven described themselves as ‘engineers.’ The other nine signatories were mainly drawn from commercial management staff of welding supply manufacturers and merchants – although one was certainly an M.I. Mech.E.
The establishment of a new institution was not the only success, as the institution also brought those from acetylene and arc welding together under one team.
Proceedings from this inaugural meeting discussed the creation of a “comprehensive welding society” and the decision to form a new society, which gained support from a range of persons and firms alike.
With a desire that “every welder should have an opportunity for keeping in close touch with the developments of the industry,” it was hoped that those joining would take an active interest in the proposed society.
It was also stated that these welders should seek a “certificate of proficiency” and that circulating information promoting the industry and training welders was also paramount.
The meeting led to those invited becoming founders, and also gained recognition from the American Welding Society who sent their “cordial good wishes.”
While small in number, this meeting set the foundations for what would become today’s internationally-recognised Institute and you can see images of the full proceedings from this inaugural meeting, below…
View the full Inaugural Meeting Proceedings PDF here.
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