Alan V. Burnard (1925-2012)

Naval architect Alan V Burnard ARINA became responsible for the development of all Fairey Marineís motor and military boats from 1957 until he left in 1982.

He had started work as a draughtsman during the war, assisting his father C W Burnard who managed the Fleetland Shipyard in Gosport. Alan was contemplating setting up his own practice, when he was recruited to Fairey Marine, specifically to develop Huntís new seagoing motorboat. His father was well known to both Charles Chichester-Smith and Charles Currey, and they had sent a copy of their advertisement to Alan and suggested he should apply.

Alan was an exacting engineer and intuitive designer, with a clear, distinctive drafting style. Even though he resigned from Fairey in 1982 he maintained his office at Hamble Point until 2011, when he fell and damaged his leg. He was also an expert in propeller design and these skills were sought for many raceboats.

Alan complained of working with no less than eleven managing directors during his 25 years with the Fairey Marine. Indeed, he gave the impression that Fairey Aviation and main board directors found Hamble jolly convenient for them to indulge their enthusiasm for sailing, and perhaps fortunately the day to day management was left to others!


Charles Currey (1916-2010)

Lieutenant Commander Charles Currey was recruited by the Fairey Marine managing director Charles Chichester-Smith to join Fairey Marine from the Royal Navy shortly after the company was formed in 1946. He worked with the well known yachtsman and designer Uffa Fox to update one of Fox's prewar designs to become the very successful Firefly dinghy, which was adopted for the 1948 Olympics in Torbay.

A first rate yachtsman, Charles Currey won a silver medal sailing in the Finn class at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics. He was appointed Fairey's sales director and was in charge of sales of all boats until his retirement in the early 1970s, and was responsible for developing the design and equipment for the sailing dinghies.

Charles Currey was also an intuitive powerboat driver, notching up many awards for Fairey in the Cowes - Torquay races at the helm of a Huntsman, including third place and first diesel boat in the first race in 1961. He was also part of the Fairey team in the 1969 Round Britain race.


Richard 'Dick' Fairey (1917-1960)

Sir Richardís elder son Dick Fairey worked his way up the Fairey company to be general manager and then deputy chairman of both Fairey Aviation and Fairey Marine when his father died in 1956.

However, Dick's health was poor as during the war he became a ferry pilot, delivering Liberator bombers from the US. In 1941, on a return trip aboard a merchant ship it was torpedoed in the north Atlantic, and after five days in an open boat his frostbitten legs had to be amputated. Despite this handicap, he went back to flying and was renowned as the first British businessman to commute to his office by helicopter. Due to his continued ill health he retired early in 1960, but had entered his unlucky Huntress Flica in the Miami-Nassau race that year, where it blew up and sank. Sadly, Dick Fairey died in the south of France only a few months after this. He was aged 43 and this was only four years after his fatherís death.

He was responsible for his school friend Bruce Campbellís appointment to Fairey Marine, and they were both friends of Ray Hunt. The whole idea of the Fairey motorboats came from Dick Fairey and Bruce Campbell, although Dick was sadly not to live to see the motorboatsí glory.


Lionel Peter Twiss (1921-2011)

Lieutenant Commander Peter Twiss DFC OBE was an heroic but extremely modest wartime pilot before becoming a Fairey Aviation test pilot after the war. He was a friend and colleague of Dick Fairey and became a national hero when in 1956, in a Fairey Delta 2, he set up the world air speed record of 1,132mph, by a huge margin of 310mph. His OBE was not for the successful record attempt, but because he saved the Delta in an earlier crash when the hydraulics failed.

Yet in 1960 Peter was to be made redundant as there was no obvious role for him at Westland Aviation after the take over of Fairey, and so he joined the team at Fairey Marine to help develop, market and race the motorboats.

Peter also managed the Fairey Boat Park, then oversaw the construction and managed the marina at Hamble Point after its take-over by a Dutch company.