HRH The Duke of Gloucester KG GCVO officially opened the newly restored Pegasus House in a special ceremony at the Airbus site in Filton earlier today.
The Grade II Listed art-deco building, which was originally opened in 1936 as the headquarters of the Bristol Aeroplane Company, will play a key role at the heart of the new Airbus Aerospace Park (AAP) – a state-of-the-art business park for over 2700 employees that will help keep Airbus at the forefront of global aviation.
The building played a key role in UK aviation throughout much of the 20th century but closed in the 1990s and suffered greatly from damage by weather and vandalism before being bought and restored by Airbus as part of the £70M investment in the AAP.
Three hundred Airbus employees will be based at the building helping support the whole range of Airbus aircraft programmes from the modern A350 XWB and the double-decker A380 ‘super jumbo’ to the A320 neo with its new more fuel efficient engines and wings.
Tom Williams, Airbus’ Senior National Representative in the UK said: “It was a great honour to have the Duke of Gloucester join employees and members of the Filton community at this historic event. Everyone at Airbus is extremely proud of our history and of the early pioneers whose passion and drive helped make the UK’s aerospace industry one of the greatest in the world”.
“Aviation is also very much a forward looking industry, we are always striving to design and engineer better, more efficient aircraft and the investment in Pegasus House and the wider Airbus Aerospace Park facilities shows Airbus’ determination to continue investing in Filton – benefiting the whole of the UK aerospace industry and ensuring we remain at the forefront of this thriving global industry both now and into the future.”
Architect David Oliveras and builders Miller Construction, who carried out the work, spent 18 months totally renovating the building – including restoring an historic four storey stained glass window and replacing all 430 windows. Employees will start moving into the building in the coming weeks which has previously hosted visits from VIPs ranging from kings & queens and Winston Churchill to iconic film stars such as Cary Grant.
The Airbus site at Filton employs over 4000 people, many of them engineers who play a key role in the design and development of all Airbus’ wings as well as working on the design, integration and testing of fuel systems and landing gear. The wings for the A400M military airlifter are also built at the site which has been a centre of the UK’s aviation industry for over 100 years.
Airbus is one of the world’s leading aircraft manufacturers. Airbus in the UK employs over 10,000 people. Over 100,000 jobs are supported in the UK due to Airbus’ extended supply chain.
Information on the history of Pegasus House can be found at: http://www.pegasushousehistory.co.uk/