Wightman, Frank 1913 - 1989


Frank Wightman attended Devonshire Street primary school, Ardwick and Birley Street Central School, Beswick. He undertook technical training at Newton Heath Technical College. On leaving the Technical College in 1927, Whightman started working for George Saxon, Openshaw, Manchester.

From 1943 he worked for a period at Beyer, Peacock & Co Ltd, locomotive engineers of Gorton, Manchester and later Hick Hargreaves of Bolton, mill engine manufacturers. Wightman’s work in looking after mill engines came at a time when the cotton mills of Lancashire and surrounding areas were beginning to close. Wightman recognised that the mills and mill engines were significant to the region’s textile industry heritage. Wightman worked with Dr Richard Hills, who set up the North Western Museum of Science and Industry, to save redundant mill engines and transfer them to the museum’s working steam collection.

Wightman died in 1989.