PUBLISHED: December 4, 2013 - 2:25 pm

The Business Excellence Award at North West Aerospace Alliance New Talent Awards event was held on the 28th of November at the Imperial War Museum, Manchester and saw prizes handed to the North West’s best emerging talent, along with the training providers and companies who support their work.

New for 2013 was the Business University Challenge Category which Team PDS (Robyn Lee, Justine Lorriman and Ian Stuart) competed in. Eight young teams from North West universities and aerospace businesses went head to head in a series of ‘The Apprentice’ style mini-challenges at Burnley College in October to test their innovation, business acumen, problem solving, presentation and communication skills. The Challenge aimed to provide a collaborative approach for the North West aerospace industry to recognise and reward emerging young talent and forms part of the NWAA New Talent Awards. The Awards were run by the highly successful Take Off in Aerospace Campaign which was developed as part of the NWAA’s Aerospace Supply Chain Excellence Programme (ASCE2). This campaign aims to encourage the most talented young people in the region to consider a career in the aerospace industry.
PDS Engineering’s Robyn Lee won a Professional Excellence award for displaying outstanding leadership during the Business University Challenge. Sponsored by the Royal Aeronautical Society Centennial Scholarship Fund and trophies provided by Rock FM Academy. They said, “Robyn shone from the start and remained consistent through all the challenges. She was a natural and enthusiastic leader who tried hard to understand all the tasks and bring her team together.”

The three top scoring teams on the day were invited to the Awards evening where Team PDS received second prize overall, beating competition from top universities and aerospace primes. It was a brilliant night for PDS and a wonderful event for everyone in attendance.


PUBLISHED: July 5, 2011 - 10:37 am


PDS Chairman, John Getty, Richard Branson and Per Lindstrand share a joke in Marrakesh.

The objective was to achieve the first ever nonstop circumnavigation of the world by manned balloon. To be able to claim the record, the balloon had to travel a minimum distance of four radians of the earth. The 1998 attempt covered approximately 15,000 miles propelled only by the wind climbing to a height of up to 30,000 feet and speeds of around 250 miles per hour.

The envelope canopy for the huge balloon begins to take shape in the Per Lindstrand factory in Oswestry.

Using the winds of the Jet Stream the brave pilots travelled all the way from Morocco before ditching off Hawaii.

The fabric balloon was 1.1 million cubic feet and a combined hot air / helium type. The large Capsule and the critical parts made by PDS all performed faultlessly and Per Lindstrand complimented us on the quality and accuracy of all our work. In the near future Virgin and Richard Branson may well pick up the challenge once more and attempt either the first ladies circumnavigation or perhaps the “First Ever Roun the World Balloon Race”.

You can be sure that PDS will be there creating the best machined parts and pressure capsules for Lindstrand Balloons.

Virgin Atlantic Balloon “Capsule” for Richard Branson comprised many precision parts engineered by PDS in Nelson, Lancashire.