GKN Aersospace Ltd

5 - South West and South Wales


Expertise in the design and manufacturing of wings has been the major but by no means the only - British contribution to Airbus aircraft from the company s earliest days 35 years ago.

Today the Airbus sites at Filton, near Bristol, and Broughton, North Wales, make up the Centre of Excellence Wing. Around 140,000 jobs are generated in the UK by Airbus wing work, directly and indirectly through supplier contracts.

At Filton, headquarters of Airbus UK, a wholly-owned subsidiary, over 4,500 people are employed in the design office, manufacturing areas and in business support roles such as procurement, finance and customer services.

The design office at Filton - one of six within Airbus manages the design of all wings for the whole Airbus family of aircraft. It is also responsible for the design integration of the landing gears and fuel systems.

More than 2,000 engineers work at Filton in a range of areas: wing integration, flight physics, structures and systems. Several hundred engineers also work on research and technology and future projects.

As well as design engineering, Filton manufactures wing components and assembles parts prior to delivery to Broughton for inclusion in wing assembly.

In its time Broughton has produced such aviation classics as De Havilland Comet and the Mosquito. Today the Broughton site is responsible for assembling the wings for all Airbus aircraft. It employs more than 5,000 people, most in manufacturing and the rest in engineering and support functions such as procurement and finance.

Broughton s apprenticeship scheme the biggest in Wales has been highly praised by British Prime Minister Tony Blair. Mr Blair made a point of addressing apprentices at Broughton live via satellite link when he attended the glittering A380 Reveal ceremony in Toulouse in January. After assembly at Broughton, the wings of the A380 are transported singly by road and then river craft to Mostyn harbour, where they are loaded onto the specially-built roll-on, roll-off ferry which takes them to France.


New Filton House
BS99 7AR
United Kingdom
Number of employees
2,001 - 5,000