Fellowship Type, Sector based Fellowships | May 2017

Lord Holmes Visits Engine Maker Rolls-Royce

Lord Holmes of Richmond MBE visited the Rolls-Royce site in Derby on Friday 5 May as part of his Industry and Parliament (IPT) Fellowship* exploring digital innovation and new technologies. 

The visit kick started his Fellowship programme exploring how innovation and applications of new technology are being utilised within Rolls-Royce. Derby is Rolls-Royce’s largest global site with more than 12,000 employees with a focus on civil aerospace and submarines. Derby is also home to the Rolls-Royce Apprentice Academy and during his visit, Lord Holmes was able to talk to apprentices about their training and future careers.

In the morning, Lord Holmes was given a tour of the Technology Exhibition where he was able to learn more about next generation manufacturing techniques and technologies including the Trent XWB aero engine, the most efficient wide body aero engine. Rolls-Royce has invested £30m on the of its production facility in Derby to help to deliver its record order book including 1,600 Trent XWB engines.

Lord Holmes was also provided with valuable insight into the decision-making process of new technologies and what Rolls-Royce believes is the right balance of innovation, investment and risk to help improve the effectiveness of its development programmes. Lord Holmes was able to increase his understanding of what drives R&D investment, such as a focus on improving the environmental performance of products. 

Lord Holmes’ Fellowship is helping him further his knowledge and understanding the challenges, opportunities and various ways in which businesses are adapting to the digital future. It is also helping him with his work as the Chair of the Assistive Technology all-party parliamentary group (APPG) and the Vice-chair of the Financial Technology APPG.

Commenting on the visit Lord Holmes said:

“I was delighted to visit the Rolls-Royce site in Derby today and I would like to thank the staff at Rolls-Royce and the IPT for facilitating this visit. I enjoyed learning how Rolls-Royce focuses on innovation and the many ways in which technology is improving the environmental performance of engines. I also very much appreciated the opportunity to meet and talk to apprentices at the on-site Apprentice Academy. I look forward to further industry visits as part of my Fellowship.”

Katie Roscoe, Rolls-Royce Government Relations Manager added:

“We were delighted to welcome Lord Holmes in Derby today. It was an absolute pleasure to host him particularly because of his enthusiasm and passion of new technologies. It was great to be able to show him our facilities in Derby, for him to meet some of our people and to talk to him about the future of digital and technology within the business.”


Notes to Editors

*IPT Fellowships are educational, non-lobbying attachments for parliamentarians, providing a unique perspective of the challenges and issues facing UK industry. Fellowships can take place in a range of organisations, from FTSE 100 companies to SMEs and voluntary organisations.