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History of the Atlantic Cable & Undersea Communications
from the first submarine cable of 1850 to the worldwide fiber optic network

Cable Work at Greenwich: Telcon, STC, & Alcatel

Bill Burns, Jim Jones, Ron Fox
Greenwich, April 2008

Introduction: This page presents personal aspects of cable-making at Greenwich, by some of the craftsmen who worked there. Many thanks to Jim Jones and Ron Fox for their contributions.

Jim Jones, now retired, worked in the cable industry at Greenwich for many years, beginning his apprenticeship at Telcon as a carpenter in September 1958. Jim shares these photographs of cable work at the Telegraph Construction & Maintenance Company (Telcon), and Standard Telephones & Cables (STC). Other members of Jim's family also worked in the cable business.

Ron Fox, who sadly died in May 2019 aged 88, started work at Telcon/STC in 1945, and worked on many cable ship projects as a marine engineer.

--Bill Burns

Telcon power cable shop, 18 May 1937
This was one of a number of similar buildings at the site

Telcon engineers beano, sometime after WWII.
Click on the image for a larger version with identifications.

Click here for Jim Jones photos and stories

Click here for Ron Fox photos and stories

Click here for Cyril Malyon photos

Click here for Harry Stocker story and photos

Click here for a photograph of the Electrical Department in 1890

Click here for photos and story of the 1957 California-Hawaii cable, made by SCL

Click here for information on CS John W. Mackay at Greenwich

Telcon Cables crew with their Austin lorry, 1950s
Left to right:
Jack Dellor
Roy Francis (carpenter apprentice)
Alfie Rigdon (carpenter labourer)
Pat ? (Telcon driver)

Photograph courtesy of Jim Jones

The Telcon flag, from the cover of the house magazine, 1959
Image courtesy of Jim Jones

19th century TCM Co. uniform button
Compare with the Western & Brazilian (WBT Co.) button on this page

Although this was originally believed to be a 20th century Telcon uniform button, subsequent research has shown that it is actually for the Thames Church Mission

For more information on the Telegraph Construction & Maintenance
Company (Telcon) and cable making at Greenwich, see
A Photographic View of Enderby's Wharf in 2004 and
150 Years Of Industry & Enterprise At Enderby's Wharf

Last revised: 11 October, 2019

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Research Material Needed

The Atlantic Cable website is non-commercial, and its mission is to make available on line as much information as possible.

You can help - if you have cable material, old or new, please contact me. Cable samples, instruments, documents, brochures, souvenir books, photographs, family stories, all are valuable to researchers and historians.

If you have any cable-related items that you could photograph, copy, scan, loan, or sell, please email me: [email protected]

—Bill Burns, publisher and webmaster: