Swansea and Port Talbot Docks History

George Jones - Chief Mechanical Foreman, Swansea Docks

We were surprised and delighted to receive an e-mail from Australia in 2008. It was from Angie Smark, granddaughter of George Jones, who was Chief Mechanical Foreman at Swansea Docks until his retirement in 1972 after 48 years service. George was a well-known figure on the docks at Swansea, and is fondly remembered by all his former colleagues.

George’s children and some of his grandchildren – including Angie – were born on the docks where he and his family lived, firstly in Dock House adjacent to the old Prince of Wales Dry Dock and, later, in the Bungalow on the north side of the Prince of Wales Dock. Upon his retirement George emigrated to Sydney, Australia where, Angie tells us, after many happy years, he passed away in 1984.

George’s retirement was quite an occasion, and was celebrated with friends, family and colleagues at a function in the Railmen’s Club in Wind Street, Swansea (see article in next column). George was presented with an album containing photographs of various locations on Swansea Docks, and of many of the people with whom he worked. These photos, taken by our colleague Viv Howells, are still in the family’s possession, a selection of which are shown below:

Bessie Bevan presenting flowers to George's wife Vi.

The Engineering staff in 1972 gathered together on the occasion of George's retirement.

Includes left to right :- Ken Hughes, Gareth Evans, Gwyn Nicholls, Ernie Tovey, Harold Hardy, Tommy Lloyd, Cyril Allen, John Ware, Billy Owen, George Copham, Jack Taylor, John Grey, Cliff Harvey, Dennis Grant, Phil Davies, Albert Wastell, George Jones, Hugh Bevan, Frank James, Joe Banfield and George Morgan.

Bill Lewis and George Jones.

Bill King presenting a cheque to George Jones on his retirement. Left to right :- Bill Lewis, Bill King (Docks Manager Swansea & Port Talbot), Keith Langdon (Docks Engineer) and George Jones

George's granddaughter Angie (our contributor) and her brother on West Wharf, Prince of Wales Dock

Nearly the same view as the photo above taken in 2008

Mechanical & Electrical foremen and Planning Office staff - standing L to R:- John Godden, Emmett Molloy, Cyril Davies, Harold Twells, Charlie Grey and Viv Howells. Seated L to R:- Dick Jones, George Jones, Jack Taylor and Norman Jenkins

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