UK’s oldest compressors discovered

Paul Boughton

The results have been counted and the winners are in! Gardner Denver's quest to find the oldest working CompAir and Hydrovane compressors has been a resounding success, with entries received from across the UK and the company has announced the two winning entries.

Flying the flag for the reliability and durability of CompAir compressors is a 1936 CompAir Broomwade machine, which has clocked up an incredible 78 years of service and an equally amazing history. Slightly younger, but 'fighting fit' in its fifties is a 1963 Hydrovane compressor.

Entered for the customer by Gardner Denver distributor, Richard Coar from Airvane Compressors, the 51-year old Hydrovane unit is in daily operation at the University of Manchester, a site that has been at the forefront of engineering since it opened. The compressor is one of approximately 70 other Hydrovane compressors that are in use across the university, all of which are serviced and maintained regularly by Airvane Compressors.

Meanwhile the 1936 CompAir compressor is in daily operation in a research facility at a University in the North of England. Entered on behalf of the customer by Gardner Denver distributor, Chris Hall from Air Compressors and Blowers North (ACB), the machine, which is located in an old World War Two bunker, is still serviced regularly by ACB and in fact, has just passed its annual maintenance inspection with flying colours.

Commenting on the success of the campaign, Colin Mander, Regional Director at Gardner Denver said, "Our compressors have always been built to last, but even we have been 'blown away' by the age of some of the machines entered, which are still in perfect working order. 

"It really is testament to the UK’s great engineering heritage that these machines are still going strong after all these years; but it is also because the compressors have been serviced regularly, by factory-trained engineers, using genuine parts and the right maintenance techniques.