Engineers are on the fastest track

Speed test: Apprentices Luke Thickett (second left) and Edward Middleton, with Richard Noble and Training Instructor Andy Millward.
Speed test: Apprentices Luke Thickett (second left) and Edward Middleton, with Richard Noble and Training Instructor Andy Millward.
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A BRITISH bid to raise the World Land Speed Record to more than 1,000 miles an hour has got a boost from Rotherham-based Newburgh Engineering.

Newburgh is one of the partners in the Bloodhound SSC project to set the new record and its apprentices Luke Thickett and Edward Middleton were on hand to present key components for the project when Richard Noble, the man behind the initiative, visited Sheffield recently.

Luke and Edward handed over parts for a Spin Test Rig, which will test the performance of Bloodhound’s brake discs which are spinning at 20,000 revolutions a minute or more than 300 times a second.

The specialist contract manufacturer, which supplies components for the nuclear, defence, oil and gas, petrochemical, aerospace and power generation industries, also made parts for equipment that was used to identify the ideal location for the record breaking bid as well as a number of components for the prototype vehicle.

Newburgh’s managing director, Vincent Middleton, said: “We are delighted to be involved with the prestigious Bloodhound SSC project, not only because it helps to promote this region’s engineering expertise on an international scale, but the project is also helping to inspire many young people to pursue careers in engineering.

“This is a really exciting industry and one where the skill and expertise of our staff is critical. We recognise the important of investing in the training and development of the next generation of young engineers and it is apprentices like Luke and Edward, who will ensure we can continue to lead the field in precision engineering long into the future.”

Newburgh was thanked by Richard Noble, who was the man behind the wheel when Thrust2 regained the land speed for Britain in 1983, by traveling reaching 633 miles an hour across the Black Rock Desert in Nevada USA.

Mr Noble went on to lead the team behind Thrust SSC, in which Royal Air Force fighter pilot, Squadron Leader Andy Green, broke the sound barrier on land, by traveling at 764 mph across the same desert in 1997.

Andy Green will be behind the wheel again when Bloodhound SSC attempts to break the 1,000 mph barrier at Hakskeen Pan in South Africa’s Northern Cape – the site identified with the help of Newburgh’s precision engineering skills, some time next year.

The Bloodhound SSC project is also seeking to inspire future generations of engineers and scientists by working with schools across the UK and universities throughout the world, and making all its research and design data available on its website at

Newburgh itself is committed to investing in developing the next generation of skilled engineers through its ‘New Era for Apprentices’ programme which is run in partnership with Brinsworth Training of Rotherham.