Dr David Osborne Davies CEng FIMMM (Obit)

Fellows' Lounge
20 Dec 2010

Dr David Osborne CEng FIMMM was born in Tredegar, South Wales, in 1927 and was educated at Tredegar Grammar School and University College, Cardiff. He graduated with a Batchelor of Science Honours degree in Mining Engineering, and gained a PhD in Engineering at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow.

After graduating, he was trained on the National Coal Board’s Management Training Scheme and, following a number of junior Management posts in the Board’s No 6 Area, South Western Division, he was appointed Undermanager at Mardy Colliery, No 4 Area, South Western Division, in 1955.


Working in academia

Four years later he entered academia, firstly at Coalville Mining and Technical College, Leicestershire, and then at Heanor Technical College (now South East Derbyshire College), Derbyshire. In 1967, he joined the University of Strathclyde as a Lecturer and was subsequently promoted to Senior Lecturer. During his time at the University he visited the USA, Canada, Germany, France, Zambia and South Africa. He has also been Visiting Professor at EI Fateh University in Libya and at the State University of Virginia, USA. David retired from academia in 1992.

During his academic career, he presented several papers to the Mining Institute of Scotland (MIS). He was co-author of two papers published in The Mining Engineer – ‘Conclusions from Strata Mechanics Investigations conducted by Cardiff and Strathclyde Universities at Longwall Faces’ (March 1982) and ‘Application of the Roof-Strata-Tilt approach to Pack Design in an Arch-shaped Roadway’ (September 1984).

Roles within IOM3

David joined the Institute in 1948 and was elected a Fellow in 1978. He was a member of the MIS Council from 1979-2002, serving as Honorary Secretary from 1992-99. In 1989/90, David was Branch President. As well as sitting on the Council of the former Institution of Mining Engineers, he was a member of the national Secretaries Committee and the Mining Legislation Committee. In 2004, David received an award for Outstanding Service to IOM3.

Throughout his membership of the MIS he participated and supported the activities of the Institute. His encouragement of young engineers was instrumental in advancing the professional development of mining engineers in Scotland. Some of his students went on to become President and all recall the important contribution he made to their careers.

Despite suffering major illness and debility over several years, David overcame his personal difficulties to actively participate and support Institute activities over 30 years. He was a much admired example of a true professional in every aspect of his life.

Unfortunately, David died suddenly this year and is sadly missed by relatives, friends and colleagues from the Institute and the University of Strathclyde. He is survived by his wife Valerie and two married daughters, Sarah and Jane.