PEOPLE – DAVIES B.O. Alderman Mayor etc – Shipbrokers Dinner Tributes.doc

Accreditation Cleveland Standard 07/03/1936



   Sincere tributes from all sides on his generous and strenuous efforts in commercial and civic life, his never-failing patience and his willingness ever to assist his colleagues, tributes in which admiration was mingled with almost reverential respect, were paid to Alderman B. O. Davies, of Redcar and Middlesbrough, at a complimentary dinner given in his honour by the Middlesbrough District Chartered Shipbrokers at the Grand Hotel, Middlesbrough, in recognition of his election as President of the institute of Chartered Ship brokers.

   Prominent ship brokers and industrialist, the Mayors of four Boroughs including the Mayor of Redcar (Councillor J. W. Farren), were present at the large gathering of the Middlesbrough Association, presided. He presented to Alderman Davies a framed enlarged photograph of officers, past officers and founder-members of the Middlesbrough Association of which Alderman Davies was president for the first three years of its existence.
The valuable work done for Redcar by Alderman B. O. Davies was pointed out by Councillor W. H. Crosswaite, chairman of the Tees District Development Board, when he proposed the principal toast of the evening, that of “The Guest.” It was largely the result of the active interest which Alderman Davies took in public affairs of the town that Redcar was granted a charter.
Shortly after arriving on Tees-side some 45 years ago said Councillor Crosthwaite, Alderman Davies displayed an interest in the respect in public life, and became a member of the old Redcar Urban Council. His contribution in that respect was outstanding and largely as the result of his efforts. Redcar was granted a charter. His work was recognised in that he was appointed Charter Mayor holding that office for three consecutive years


   In the wider field of service on the North Riding County Council, his efforts had been no less praiseworthy. He had paid special attention to the more urgent questions of the day, such as the health service. Again as a member of the Tees Conservancy Commissioners, he had been active in urging a widening and deepening of the river, while he had been instrumental of guiding the work of the Tees Pilotage authority, of which he was chairman.
For his services to Finland the President of that country had invited Alderman Davies with the First Class of the White Rose, but undoubtedly his great work had been in connection with the Ship brokers Association. He was a founder member of the Middlesbrough association and its first president, and it was due to his efforts up and down the country that the Institute had been formed.
Councillor Crosthwaite also paid a personal tribute to Alderman Davies when he said, “He is a man whom I am proud to call my friend. I should like to publicly record that fact that my entry into this business which carries my name was entirely due to Alderman Davies. In face of some unofficial opposition he succeeded in placing a stepping stone under my feet. Neither he nor I could have guessed at that moment where that step might lead.”
Alderman Davies had left a sick bed and had to reply to the tributes sitting down. He referred to the missionary work which led to the formation of the Institute, pointing out that the ship broker played a vital part in the shipping industry and should be a man of ability and high character. The path of the ship broker has not been too easy since the War, for with the rest he had suffered from the depression in trade barriers and the disturbed political conditions.
A very hopeful outlook regarding trade in the district was expressed by the four Mayors who responded to the toast of “The Trade of Tees-side,” which was proposed by Councillor J. Wesley Brown, president of the Tees-side Chamber of Commerce.
“Probably no man has paid a more important part in the trade of Tees-side than Alderman Davies” said the Mayor of Middlesbrough (Councillor A. Elstrop) They were meeting under very happy conditions. For many years it had been deplored that trade in the district was at a very low ebb, but it was possible now to feel with gratitude that things were moving forward. There were signs that trade was improving.
Tees-side had a great future and is might be that the interests of trade would best be served by a closer relationship between the various authorities. “We cannot exist as separate units and trade depends a good deal one upon another,” he said.


   The Mayor of Thornaby, (Councillor J. L. F. McGann) contended that a spirit of co-ordination existed among neighbouring boroughs of Tees-side. This was shown by what was transpiring in connection with the Tees Development Board. There were some excellent sites available on Tees-side for industrial purposes if the Government might be prevailed upon to assist intending purchasers in relieving them of the cost of the sites.
“We have the man power to assist in their production,” concluded Councillor McGann.
The Mayor of Redcar (Councillor J. W. Farren) told the gathering that Tees-side was very fortunate at having a borough like Redcar on its doorstep. Every Mayor, Councillor, and citizen was proud to see the bogey of unemployment fading into the distance.
Mr. J. Bolton (local secretary) was in charge of the arrangements.


dean June 15, 2010 People & Characters