Charles Inglis (engineer)

Sir Charles Edward Inglis, OBE, FRS (31 July 1875 – 19 April 1952) was a British civil engineer. He served in the Royal Engineers during the First World War and invented the InGLis Bridge, a reusable steel bridging system. He returned to Cambridge University after the war as a professor and head of the Engineering Department. He has been described as the greatest teacher of engineering of his time and has a building named in his honour at Cambridge University.

About Charles Inglis (engineer) in brief

Summary Charles Inglis (engineer)Sir Charles Edward Inglis, OBE, FRS (31 July 1875 – 19 April 1952) was a British civil engineer. He was educated at Cheltenham College and won a scholarship to King’s College, Cambridge. He served in the Royal Engineers during the First World War and invented the InGLis Bridge, a reusable steel bridging system. He returned to Cambridge University after the war as a professor and head of the Engineering Department. He spent his later years developing his theories on the education of engineers and wrote a textbook on applied mechanics. He has been described as the greatest teacher of engineering of his time and has a building named in his honour at Cambridge University. He died in 1952 and was buried at St Paul’s Cathedral, London, with his wife and three children. His funeral was held at St Andrew’s Church, Cambridge, where he was buried with his first wife, Florence, and their two children. He is buried in the family grave, next to his wife’s parents, in the grounds of St James’ Palace, London. He also had a brother, John, who died in the Second World War, and a sister, Mary, who later became a doctor. He had a son, Charles, who became a well-known author and author-at-large. He wrote a number of books on the history of engineering and was a member of the Royal Society and the Royal Institute of Civil Engineers. His father, Alexander, was an Admiral in the Navy and had captained HMS Belliqueux at the Battle of Camperdown in 1797.

His grandfather, John Ingl is also a former Royal Navy Admiral and was the son of a newspaper proprietor, John Frederick Feeney. His elder brother was the historian John Alexander In glis FRSE, who was born in Scotland in 1875. He married Florence in 1894 and had three children, including a daughter, Mary. He worked as an apprentice for the civil engineering firm of John Wolfe-Barry & Partners. In 1901 he was made a fellow Engines, Balancing Balines, after writing a thesis on the treatment of the general treatment of locomotives. In 1916 he was placed in charge of bridge design and supply at the War Office and, with Giffard Le Quesne Martel, pioneered the use of temporary bridges with tanks. He retired from military service in 1919 and was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire. He went on to become an associate of the Institution of Civil. Engineers and won the Institution’s Miller Prize for his paper on The Geometrical Methods in Investigating Mechanical Problems. In 1953 he was knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for his services to engineering. He later became the head of Cambridge University’s Engineering Department, which became the largest in the university and one of the best regarded engineering schools in the world. His death in 1952 was followed by the publication of a book on the effects of vibration on structures and materials.