Half Century Hit In Quick Time

Stuart Cross Chief Design Engineer at Don Valley Engineering Ltd, retired after over half a century with the same company.

Stuart-Cross From leaving school to start as an apprentice, Stuart has been a key player in helping Don Valley Engineering evolve into the company it is today; ‘A global leader in the Screening and Separation technology of bulk materials handling’. Barry Smith, Chairman of the Don Valley Group presented Stuart with a cheque collected by his colleagues and friends at Don Valley Engineering Ltd.

Stuart will be sadly missed for his knowledge and expertise, but has left a legacy of experience with his team to continue to carve out future success. Barry Smith commented –

“I can remember when I started work at Don Valley, this guy had already been there 10 years and was one of the established engineers who knew what they were doing and he was producing drawings that were a work of art and I envied his ability, as did everyone.

In those days, everyone stood at their drawing boards, pencils and pens in hand, slide rules at the ready, drawing on half elephant tracing paper working in feet and inches. Trying to work out what 13 pitches at 2 & 7/16” was in total. Slopes were worked in gradients and all calculations were done in long hand because the first electronic calculators were a few years off being invented.

So there we all were in the drawing office on Wheatley Hall Road, cigarette in hand, drawing whatever we were building at the time. So the lads in the workshop could build it and our steel erectors could put it up. At the time we were drawing what someone else had designed, never dreaming that one day we might actually have learned enough to design something ourselves. It was just a job that we enjoyed and enjoying the company around us with the people that we were working with.

People came and people went over the years. DVE changed and adapted to whatever it was needed as at the time and some of us hung around, because we were doing ok and were still enjoying what we were doing and the people we were working with. So we helped look after DVE and DVE looked after us. Then one day someone tells you that you have been here 25 years and what seems like a few years later, its forty, then in Stuarts case its fifty years and you start thinking about hanging your boots up and calling it a day.

Stuart has finally decided to do that after 55 years, he is the longest serving member the company has had and it is a record that will never be surpassed. I know he has enjoyed his time here because he chose to stay and not to leave.

DVE will be a strange place without Stuart, because no one, past or present here to today has ever known DVE without Stuart. He will be sorely missed and I hope he will visit often, because there will always be a warm welcome anytime he wants to check up on us.”

Stuart said “ I am now ready to retire and am looking forward to having the time for me and my wife to enjoy life together. I have a long list of things to do, so I will not get bored. First is my conservatory refurbishment and garden.”

Stuart’s second love, Cricket, will allow him to continue to be a keen member and supporter of Sprotborough Cricket Club and he hopes to spend many a happy day watching the village team and reminiscing about the good old days.

We wish Stuart a long and happy retirement and look forward to seeing him again soon.

The Don Valley Team

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