John George Weeks

John George Weeks was born in Ryton-onTyne, County Durham, on the 6th of August 1843. He was the son of Richard Morce Weeks and was educated at home and Newcastle Grammar until 12. After this he attended Rossall Boarding School in Lancashire, leaving in 1859 at age 16 and top of his school in maths.

In 1860 Weeks began his apprenticeship as a mining engineer with Stella Coal Company under Robert and J. B. Simpson. In 1865 Weeks was made master sinker at Addison pit but left in the same year to be manager of Machen and Rhos Llantwit Colliery in South Wales. Here he remained for two years and in 1868 became manager of North Gawber and Willow Bank Collieries near Barnsley, a position he held until September 1872. He was then appointed head viewer and agent to Bedlington Coal Company Limited. Weeks became managing owner of Joseph Laycock & Company’s Seghill Colliery in 1883 and was mining advisor to Earl of Ravensworth.

Weeks was a member of the Local Board of the Urban District Council in 1876 and continued as member until 1913. He was appointed first representative on Blyth Harbour Commision. Frm 1879 until his death he was a member of Morpeth Board of Guardians. In 1894 Weeks was made justice of the peace, later becoming chairman of divisional court and member of licensing committee. He became a member of the Joint Committee of the Coal-trade Association of Northumberland in 1873 until 1913. Week was then made vice-chairman of Northumberland Coal-owners’ Association and held this office until death.

Weeks was elected as President of the North of England Institute of Mining and Mechanical Engineers in the years 1900 to 1902. He had become a member in 1865, elected to the Council in 1877, and served until death. He was also a member of the Council and of the Finance and Publications Committee of the Institution of Mining Engineers.

For many years, Weeks was an examiner for colliery managers’ certificates. He married Frances Mary in 1881, daughter of Thomas Hunter Rutherford, and together they had one son, Richard James Weeks, ¬†and two daughters.

Weeks died on the 8th of July 1916, after an illness of three months, and was buried in Ryton churchyard.

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