Born at Swansea, 24 January 1885, son of James C. Soulsby, marine surveyor. He was educated at Jarrow-on-Tyne and apprenticed there to naval architecture at the works of Palmers' Shipbuilding Co. He worked for a while with John Thornycroft and Co., a firm specialising in naval destroyer construction at Chiswick, before returning to Jarrow for five years. He married, 1911, Margaret Dickinson; they had no children. His long and distinguished career in the ship-repairing industry began in 1912 when he went to Cardiff as assistant manager to Cardiff Channel Dry Docks and Pontoon Co. In 1919 he went to Newport as manager of C.H. Bailey Ltd., returning in 1928 to Cardiff as general manager of all the works of the Channel Co. operating in Cardiff, Newport, Barry and Avonmouth, until it was amalgamated with the Mountstuart Co. 3 years later. He then became general manager and eventually chairman (1947) of the combined enterprise, Mountstuart Dry Docks Ltd., retiring in 1961. He was also chairman of Stothert and Pitt Ltd., 1946-59, and of several societies associated with the docks. During World War II he was appointed by the Admiralty to the key post of regional director of merchant shipbuilding and repairs in the Bristol Channel and the north-west of England, 1941-47, and in recognition of his services he was knighted in 1944. He died at his home, 77 Roath Court Road, Cardiff, 9 January 1966.
Published date: 2001
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