John Parker came to the Hawker Centre on the 10th November to tell the Association about BAE Systems Heritage. He was accompanied by Barry Guess who looks after the archive at Farnborough and on this occasion erected the heritage display panels used by the Heritage group on visits and presentations.
John started his aeronautical career as an RAE apprentice before moving into the industry, arriving at HSA Kingston in 1977 working for Programme Control. Later in Project Management he was British Aerospace's Harrier project Manager at Kingston and St Louis. In addition he is now the BAE Systems UK Heritage Manager covering air, land and sea activities, a 'part time' job which he is expected to do in just one day a week!
BAE Systems' Heritage starts in 1510 with the foundation of the Royal Powder Factory at Waltham Abbey, Essex. This became the Royal Ordnance Factory which was in due course bought by British Aerospace. BAE Systems now covers land, marine, air and systems and is more than 50% USA based.
The UK Heritage Programme has two branches: the UK Heritage Project Group that supports museums, individuals and professional groups that cover BAE Systems' heritage, such as the Imperial War Museum at Duxford. The other is the Heritage Product Group which provided technical and financial support for projects that have airworthiness and safety considerations. These include the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, the Royal Navy Historic Flight , the Shuttleworth Collection and de Havilland Support Ltd.
Funds are provided by BAES and colleague Companies. Preservation activities cover airframes, restoration projects, technical drawings, photographs, artefacts, paintings and other works of art, and factory closures. The archive is housed at Farnborough.
BAES Heritage awareness is promoted at corporate and employee levels, to the media, to the Government and to the general public. Submissions to the US Government now have to include heritage information.
In closing John said that BAES recognises its responsibility to legacy Companies and the contributions made by employees, and continues to support activities and projects which will protect the heritage for future generations.
After the talk Members were invited by artist Mark Bromley to pick
up a paint brush and add some colour to his painting of Harriers over
Kingston, marking the 50th anniversary of the P.1127's first hover.