david lindsley FIET; Hon Fellow, Kingston  University

… communicating engineering

LINDSLEY, DAVID M. FIET; Hon Fellow, Kingston University

David became a Fellow of the Institution of Engineering and Technology in 1988. After graduating from Kingston University (then Kingston Technical College) in 1959 he worked on aircraft instrumentation with Wayne Kerr Laboratories. He then joined the Rosemount Engineering Company to work on high-precision temperature-measuring instruments and systems. In 1962 he joined a Babcock International subsidiary, Bailey Meters and Controls, which engineered large-scale control and instrumentation systems for the power, water, chemical, process and marine industries. As a systems engineer, he worked in China, Japan, India, Africa, Europe and the USA. He rose through the Bailey ranks and in 1976 was appointed Director of Engineering. He conceived, and then led a team that developed, an entirely new range of control modules which was hugely successful in capturing major contracts. (One German competitor, long dominant in the market, said that it was the first time he had been worried by Bailey!) In 1978 David was also appointed Project Director for the company’s Anglo-American team engaged in the development of an advanced distributed-digital system. There he had to weld together a team of 200 British and American engineers addressing the requirements of each company’s clients in disparate world markets.

In 1980, realizing that maintaining market share was becoming increasingly dependent on flexibility and speed of response, he saw the possibilities of Computer-aided design (CAD) technology to address these issues. He drove through the capital-expenditure justification for a large CAD system and then spearheaded its introduction into the company’s Croydon facility - in the course of which strong Trade Union concerns had to be addressed. This was done, and the outcome was one of the first large-scale CAD systems to be implemented in the UK. It was successful in helping the company to win valuable export orders in the face of strong competition from German and Japanese competitors.

In 1982 David left Bailey to set up his own engineering consultancy practice, providing engineering services to power and water companies worldwide. This company operated for twenty-five years, through a time of great financial turmoil and technical evolution.

In 2013, in recognition of his services to the engineering profession, Kingston University bestowed on him an Honorary Fellowship.

David is the author of two technical books: 'Boiler Control Systems', published by McGraw Hill in 1991 and 'Power Plant Instrumentation and Control' published by the (then) IEE in 1999.

Conscious of the need to attract young people to engineering and to inform the public at large about the profession, he has published three novels featuring an engineer hero. His intention was to show that engineering is a fulfilling, rewarding and exciting profession. The first of these books was published in 2009 and won a major prize in the Engineering Media Awards literary contest that year. A sequel was published by Hale Books in 2010 and was ranked third in its genre in the Amazon listing in July 2012.

Until recently, David was Chairman of the Teddington Section of the Institution of Engineering and Technology’s London Network. He is an active Rotarian and has also served on the committee of the Twickenham Branch of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, for which the Institution awarded him a Silver Badge. He and his wife have three sons and four grandchildren.