Graham Weller, who was privileged to be part of the design team that came up with the final configuration for the Hawk remembers….

    I joined the Kingston design team on 4 September 1972 and after a foreshortened graduate apprenticeship of six months, settled into what was then called ‘Propulsion Integration’ spending my first few weeks working on the P.1182’s engine intake design with Kit Milford. I also worked with Jim Calkin on performance prediction and seemed to spend weeks if not months turning computer output into performance graphs.
    After a visit to the USA, I returned with one of the first desk calculators to appear in Airframe Engineering (a $10 Commodore which worked a treat), later replaced with an HP25 which I still have - somewhere. I was involved in low- and high-speed wind-tunnel testing of the intake configurations at ARA Bedford which was fascinating.
    The first take-off 40 years ago was one of the most exciting events in a career that later saw me based in Washington and sending the telex back to Kingston that we had been selected for the VTXTS programme. Having also worked on the AV-8B and watched the first flights of the YAV-8Bs, it is a source of regret at not being around when the first T-45 took to the air.
Hawk Memories


    However, the Kingston team was a world beater in every sense, and working with the two Gordons was a great privilege. The first Hawk mock-up fuselage was built at Kingston, from which we went straight to the first aircraft. If I recall correctly the move to metric was a major step for everyone, complete with a different drawing number format, etc.. Exciting times!
    By the way, I recently found a Hawker Aircraft Ltd. letter to my grandmother dated 28 Nov 1944 confirming her bonus of 4/11d - she worked on Hurricane production at Langley it seems.