I graduated from the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne with a degree in Marine Engineering in 1972. After further experience in marine engineering and building, commissioning and testing conventional and nuclear boilers for Clarke Chapman, Gateshead, I joined the ship classification society Lloyd’s Register of Shipping in 1977 and eventually retired in 2013 as Senior Principal Surveyor and Technical Manager of the Technical Investigation Department. My main responsibility was the worldwide investigation of failures, performance, and in-service problems of marine and land-based machinery and structures.
I wrote over 200 investigation reports. I also vetted, and tried to improve the intelligibility of many others. I tried to pass on some of this experience by giving several papers and presentations to the shipping and marine engineering industry, for example: Failures of medium speed diesel engines; Tanker structural vibration; Failures of marine propulsion shafting systems; Electronically controlled two-stroke diesel engines. Copies can be provided.
An interest in the history of engineering led me to join the Newcomen Society in 1993, believing that an understanding of past practice is an essential part of good engineering.
My engineering interests have followed my professional ones, with railway history and engineering being of great interest outside work. My history master at school gave me an interest in history which has continued long after I thought I couldn’t earn a living in the subject.
I am a Chartered Engineer, Eur.Ing., a fellow of the I.Mar.EST., and a member of the I.Mech.E.