William Archibald Summers was born in 1919 and entered the mining industry with the Ashington Coal Company in 1935 becoming a mining student with them three years later at Ashington Colliery. His mining education was undertaken at Ashington Mining School on a Miners’ Welfare Commission scholarship. He went on to gain his First Class Certificate of Competency in 1944 and in the same year became Manager of Bardon Mill Colliery;later moving on to Seghill Colliery and then to Hartley and Gloria Collieries in 1948, as Manager.
In 1951, he was appointed Area Mechanization Engineer for the Cumberland Area — one of the earliest of these appointments to be made by the NCB. He then held similar posts in the Northumberland Coalfield,prior to joining British Jeffrey Diamond (Dresser) Ltd – the Wakefield based mining equipment manufacturers – in 1965 and becoming the company’s Northern Regional Manager.
Summers’ son David obtained a First Class degree in Mining and a PhD at Leeds University and then went to the USA, eventually becoming a Professor at Missouri University of Science and Technology.
Summers was NEIMME President in 1982-83.
He died in 1998.
Summers, W.A., Edwards, A.H. & Hancock, J.K. Correlation of penetrometer tests with plough performance in Northumberland and Durham Division Colliery Guardian 211, 1965, 553-562
Summers, W.A. & Summers, D.A. Application of high pressure water jets to longwall mining Mining Engineer 139 1979-80, 915 – 924
Summers, W.A. The oldest miner of them all [Presidential address NEIMME] Mining Engineer 142 1982-83, 611-615