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Peter Hamilton

PLANT - LAUNCHES

Peter Hamilton, the founder of the HyMac excavator, claimed to be the first European all-hydraulic digger, has died aged 83.

In 1960 Mr Hamilton discovered an American product called the Hy-Hoe and in 1962 set up a company in Rhymney, South Wales, to build an upgraded European version, the Hy-Mac 480, with colleague Sandy Shand.

The two men expanded production to a point where the factory employed 1,200 staff and the company was seen as the main rival to JCB.Mr Hamilton ultimately sold the business to conglomerate Powell Duffryn in 1968.

Mr Hamilton briefly joined forces with his old adversary Joe Bamford in a joint marketing company called Hamilton JCB but had to retire through ill health.