Rob jokingly said:
“Back then cycling down the A5 to work every day was a totally different experience”
“It was virtually empty, and there was far less traffic to worry about!
“When I first joined the company in 1962 MIRA only owned two vehicles; the Director’s Jaguar and a Morris Oxford Traveller. Very few people went out of the gate on business and there were no new employee cars in the car park. MIRA was a fraction of the size it is today. It employed 250 people and there were only two manned facilities on the proving ground: the control tower and the full scale wind tunnel. It was a much different place to work compared to today’s MIRA.”
Living in Hinckley at the time; Rob chose to start his career at MIRA’s Nuneaton headquarters partly for its nearby location, but also because of the mystique surrounding the work that was being carried out at the site.
“Everyone in the local area knew it was there, but nobody really knew what they were doing. It was all very secretive. At the time MIRA were only taking three new trainees on per year, so getting a job here really did feel like a big achievement.”
After obtaining his HNC in Mechanical Engineering and Electronic Engineering (with endorsements) whilst working as a trainee at MIRA – a qualification rated the same as a degree at the time – Rob then took up the post of research engineer, before later moving up to the position of senior engineer and finally consultant.
Over the last 50 years Rob has gained a wealth of experience through his work in a number of different departments at MIRA. He was part of the original team that set up MIRA’s widely regarded crash facility in 1965. Rob has also worked to develop robot drivers for use on dynamometers, vehicle test instrumentation, Micro Cell barriers and has played a large part in MIRA’s clutch and gearshift testing instrumentation. More recently Rob has worked as a consultant on MIRA’s highly successful military vehicle programmes including Panama.