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Institution news

Tony Roche becomes Institution’s new President

Press Office

Tony Roche, President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers
Tony Roche, President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers

Tony Roche FREng FIMechE CEng BSc Hon DTech has assumed office as President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.

Tony said of his appointment:

“I am delighted and honoured to have been elected by Council and the Trustee Board to take up the role of President for the second time in my life.

“My second term in office will be about refocusing the Institution on what makes it great – its Members. The IMechE is first and foremost a membership organisation and our Royal Charter is clear that our object and purpose is to 'promote the development of Mechanical Engineering and to facilitate the exchange of information and ideas thereon'. It is crucial that we remember this and it becomes our relentless focus as we deliver activity now and as we make plans for the future.

“Clearly the last few months have been challenging for the IMechE with some of our Members expressing concern over the governance and operation of the Institution. I believe the Institution must now unite and work together towards a resolution and it is crucial that we get the governance and finance reviews requested by the membership urgently underway.

“However, it is also important that while we carry out these reviews that we also continue to look to the future and how best to continue delivering our vision of 'improving the world through engineering.' I want to speak to as many Members as possible to understand what they want from their Institution and what more it can be doing to support their priorities and activities both in the UK and across the world.

“I am looking forward to working together with the Trustee Board, Council, the wider Membership and the fantastic team of staff at the IMechE to achieve this and to ensure that our Institution continues to flourish in the future.”

Tony Roche is a hugely experienced manager and engineer with a long and distinguished career in the rail sector. He held a number of senior positions including Engineering Director for the Intercity Fleet, the Board’s Director of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering, Chief Executive of British Rail Maintenance Limited, Deputy Managing Director of Network South-East and finally as Executive Board Member of BR for engineering, safety and support services. On leaving British Rail Tony established a consultancy company advising on railway management and engineering.

Starting in the workshops at 16 years old he completed a seven-year engineering apprenticeship incorporating design, construction and maintenance of railway rolling stock.  At the same time he graduated with a BSc in Mechanical Engineering.

Throughout his career his focused on continuous improvement across all aspects of management performance, working with teams to achieve agreed objectives through constructive challenge.

Tony has maintained an active involvement in the engineering profession. He previously held the role of President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in 2001. Tony is also a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering, a Member of the Smeatonian Society of Civil Engineers and a Past Master of the Worshipful Company of Engineers.

Notes to Editors

  • Contact the Institution of Mechanical Engineers’ Press Office on 020 7973 1261 or email
  • Past Presidents include George Stephenson, our first President and 'Father of the Railways', William Armstrong, whose house, Cragside, was the first in the world to use hydroelectricity, Arthur Hartley, who helped develop the Pluto Pipeline to supply the Allies during World War II, Bernard Crossland,  carried out the Kings Cross fire investigation and Pamela Liversidge, our first female President, 1997.
  • The Institution of Mechanical Engineers was established in 1847 and has some of the world’s greatest engineers in its history books. It is one of the fastest growing professional engineering institutions. Headquartered in London, we have operations around the world and over 120,000 members in more than 140 countries working at the heart of the most important and dynamic industries such as the automotive, rail, aerospace, medical, power and construction industries.

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