Peter Flinn is a chartered engineer who studied mechanical sciences at the University of Cambridge. He also holds an MBA and attended the ISMP senior management programme at Harvard Business School. He has worked mainly in manufacturing industry in the aircraft, rail, commercial vehicle and process industries sectors.
He started his career with the military aircraft division of what is now BAE Systems on projects such as the Anglo-French Jaguar.
He then moved to Leyland DAF Limited, the commercial vehicle organisation, his last position being Quality Director for the UK part of the company, having previously held senior positions in product development, research and manufacturing in Leyland and in Scotland.
He joined BREL/ABB in Derby, now Bombardier UK’s rail business, as Head of Engineering. He was closely involved in the restructuring of the rail company after ABB took full control, setting up and running the Bodyshell Division of which he was Director, based in York.
Subsequently in ABB, he was MD of ABB Support Ltd in Derby and then MD of ABB Engineering Services/ABB Eutech, a 750-person international technical consultancy, bought by ABB from ICI. His role there was to integrate this business into ABB, ensure its financial viability and develop its position in the market place.
His most recent industrial role was as Managing Director of Vectra Group Limited, an engineering consultancy specialising in safety work for hazardous industries, bought in a distressed condition. It was subsequently sold for a significant premium.
Since 2007, he has worked at the interface between industry, government and academia. In 2014, he completed the start-up of the Aerospace Technology Institute. Prior to that, he helped InnovateUK establish the Catapult programme. During 2009 and 2010, he was the Project Director for the £40.55m Manufacturing Technology Centre built near Coventry. All three organisations seem to be flourishing.
For two years prior to that, he led the manufacturing activities of the InnovateUK and was Head of Technology for the organisation.
Since withdrawing from active consultancy in 2017, he has written a book entitled Managing Technology & Product Development Programmes, to be published by John Wiley & Sons in March 2019.
He is an active member of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, has been chairman of its Manufacturing Industries Division and is the main point of contact for TMMX. He was chairman of the Intelligent Automation centre at Loughborough University between 2012 and 2017.
He is married with two grown up children and five grandchildren. He is active in the local community in Ashbourne and was Captain of Ashbourne Golf Club in 2012.
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