1771 - 1780 THOMAS YEOMAN
1781 - 1782 CHRISTOPHER PINCHBECK
1783 - 1792 JOSEPH NICKALLS
In 1793 the Society was reconstituted without a President, but with a Treasurer; in 1841 it was resolved ‘that it is expedient that the Society do annually elect a President’
Presidents are elected annually at the AGM in and serve from January 1st to December 31st
PROFESSOR GEORGE FLEMING FRENG FRSE
President of the Smeatonian Society of Civil Engineers 2023
As you will find from the section devoted to the Society’s history, we are the oldest engineering organisation in the World, founded in 1771 by John Smeaton and seven other engineers. John Smeaton was the first engineer to call himself a “Civil Engineer” to distinguish himself from Military Engineers. After John Smeaton’s death the name was amended to The Smeatonian Society of Civil Engineers in his memory.
The membership throughout its history has had a limited membership and today that is a maximum of 72 First Class Fellows plus a small number of Honorary Fellows. As you will have gathered the term “civil engineer” in 1771 was different from today for it included all disciplines of engineering rather than today’s understanding. The Society continues to embrace all branches of engineering and science, thus representing a very broad church.
The Society normally meets seven times per year for dinner over which the professions engage and network with each other in a convivial atmosphere. Two of our meetings are more formal discussion meetings with an eminent speaker taking the lead. It is normal for Fellows to bring guests associated with the professions. Further, there is a Smeatonian Lecture each year which is presented to a wide audience. In recent years, the Society has also hosted a number of online discussions, which have been well attended and have provided a high quality of the speeches and subsequent discussions. We aim to continue these in 2023.
This year the discussions focus on two issues important to our civil society, namely “Medical Engineering” and "Transport”. We are seeing rapid changes to the way our society works and we must develop ways for it to succeed in the future. The role of the engineer is to help society adjust to these changes.
Our discussion dinners include future and past leaders of our engineering Professions with the objective of knowledge transfer through informal discussion based on experience.
SIR JOHN ARMITT CBE FRENG
Past President of the Smeatonian Society of Civil Engineers 2022
HRH THE PRINCESS ROYAL KG KT GCVO GCSTJ QSO CD FRENG
Past President of the Smeatonian Society of Civil Engineers 2021
SIR DOUGLAS OAKERVEE CBE FRENG
Past President of the Smeatonian Society of Civil Engineers 2020