Dictionary of Irish Architects 1720 - 1940

Railway engineer. Arthur William Forde was born on 12 July 1821, a son of the Rev. Arthur Brownlow Forde, of Maghull, Lancashire, and Co. Down. When he was fifteen, he was articled for five years to JOHN GODWIN JOHN GODWIN , engineer of the Ulster Railway, and from 1840 until 1843 he was employed by WILLIAM DARGAN  WILLIAM DARGAN on the extension of the Ulster Railway from Lisburn to Portadown, and on the Belfast Waterworks. He then re-entered the Ulster Railway Co. and became chief assistant and resident engineer of the extension from Portadown to Armagh and on the Newry, Warrenpoint & Rostevor, Newry & Enniskillen and Belfast & Co. Down railways. He also assisted as general manager. In 1849 he was appointed chief engineer to the Londonderry & Enniskillen Railway, completing the line to Derry, and was then appointed general manager in addition to his duties as chief engineer.

In 1855 Forde was appointed Chief Engineer of Bombay, Baroda & Central India railway. He was to spend the remainder of his life in India. He left the service of the Bombay, Baroda & Central India railway in 1860 and set up in private practice in Bombay. Among his works was the reclamation of a tract of about 7,000 acres near Nowsaree, which was named the Seaforde Land Reclamation after the Forde family seat in Co. Down. He died in Bombay on 25 October 1886. He had married on 5 November 1846 Ada Emilia (d. 1873), daughter of the Rev. Andrew O'Beirne, by whom he had one son, Arthur Brownlow.(1)


All information in this entry not otherwise accounted for is from the obituary of Forde in Min. Proc. ICE 88 (1886-87), 436-7, which see for further details of his career in India.

(1) Burke LGI (1904), 197 (sub Forde of Seaforde).