South Molton Community College 1972-1977. North Devon College1977-1982. Highbury College of Technology1983-1986.Open University 2007-2012
O Levels, City & Guilds 255 part III production engineering, Higher National Certificate mechanical engineering. BSc Open (Technology)
Apprentice toolmaker. Development engineer. Detail design engineer. Design team leader. Project and design engineer.
Director and mechanical engineer.
I am a freelance mechanical engineer working in the prosthetic limb industry. I love my work, but I enjoy my holidays more.
My name is Steve. I am married with two grown up children.
I have worked in engineering since I left school and that was a long time ago! I served an apprenticeship, at the same time studying part time at my local college. At 22 I moved from North Devon to Hampshire to get into design. Once again I studied part time for a further 3 years.
A few years later I decided to work in the artificial limb industry and help people less fortunate than me. I spent many years designing various types of prosthetic legs. As part of a dedicated team we won many awards for the limbs we developed.
I got a degree in my forties through Open University part time studies, then a few years later I started my own business. I now support companies with their engineering needs, solving problems and designing their products.
I love my holidays and now my children have grown up, my wife and I can go where we want to. We’ve been on night time jungle walks in Costa Rica, zip lined in Mexican forests and swam with whale sharks in the Caribbean. My favourite is snorkelling in the Red Sea.
I am one of the engineers responsible for bringing artificial limbs into the 21st century
I started my engineering career at sixteen with a traditional five year apprenticeship within the aerospace industry. During this time I gained a qualification in production engineering (manufacturing things). At 22 I was given the opportunity to enter the field of design, but had to move half way across the country to the company’s HQ.
Once working in design I discovered a flair for innovation and ingenuity. At this time, I also studied part time to gain a qualification in mechanical engineering (designing and developing products).
I moved into the prosthetic limb industry in the 1990s. My first job was, together with experts in electronics (yes, other engineers) and biomechanics (yet more engineers) to design and develop the first microprocessor controlled knee. Constantly evolving this concept, over the next twenty years, we developed some of the worlds leading technology within the artificial limb industry.
More recently I started a company providing freelance engineering help to other companies. I Work within various industries such as automotive, aerospace and general industrial areas, whilst maintaining my links with medical device companies.
My Typical Day: I don't have a typical day! but they all involve engineering in one way or another.
How would you describe yourself in 3 words?
Very enthusiastic engineer
What's the best thing you've done in your career?
Invented and designed intelligent artificial legs
What or who inspired you to follow your career?
Probably the moon landings of the late 60s and early 70s
What was your favourite subject at school?
What did you want to be after you left school?
I had no idea!
Were you ever in trouble at school?
If you weren't doing this job, what would you choose instead?
Who is your favourite singer or band?
What's your favourite food?
What is the most fun thing you've done?
Zip lining in a Mexican jungle.
If you had 3 wishes for yourself what would they be? - be honest!
To be healthy, happy and especially lucky.
Tell us a joke.
What do you call a dog that can do magic? A labracadabrador