Director Biographies

James A Quinn   CEng MIET

Studied Engineering at Liverpool Polytechnic. Obtained HNC in Mechanical Engineering in 1963 and HNC in Production Engineering in 1965. Became a Chartered Engineer in 1970

Served as Technician Apprenticeship and draughtsman at Plessey Co.

He joined Fibreglass Ltd in 1965 and held various roles concerned with engineering design and production in composite materials. He became Applications Manager, when he was responsible for the provision of technical service on GRP materials, processes and properties.

He held the role of Senior Product Manager for a range of products including Surfacing Veils, Chopped Strand Mat, Continuous Strand Mat and Chopping Roving,

He joined Bridon Composites in 1983 as Technical Manager. After the acquisition by Shell and company name change to Fibreforce Composites he became Technical Director. Responsibility was for technical activities (design, quality, testing, production engineering) of the company, which specialised in the pultrusion of composites.

He left Fibreforce Composites in November 1991 to set up a Private practice as a Consulting Engineer in the field of composite materials, specialising in Design and Manufacturing Engineering.


Composites Industry Activities have included:-

Royal Academy of Engineering -Visiting Professor in  Principles of Engineering Design.

Founder member of the EUROCOMP programme. A £1 million DTI/Industry funded research programme to produce a European code of practice for design of structural elements in composites.

Chaired various British Plastics Federation Working Parties including Chairman of the Advanced Composites Group of the BPF.

Member of Advisory Board, Advanced Composites Materials Centre, Plymouth University.

Member of Editorial Board of ‘Advanced Composites Engineering’ Magazine.

Visiting Lecturer at Imperial College London on Composite Materials.


‘Design Data – Fibreglass Composites’ Fibreglass Ltd

‘Design Manual – Engineered Composite Profiles’

Design Methodology for Rectangular Tanks in GRP

‘Properties of Thermoset Polymer Composites’ Chapter 3 of ‘Design with Advanced Composite Materials’ Edited by Leslie Phillips OBE

‘Composites – Design Manual’ 4th Edition 2006.

Papers Presented Include

‘Cost and Weight Optimisation Decisions for GRP’  ICCM III

‘Composites Selection Methods for Designers’  FRC 84

‘The Application of Acoustic Emission Techniques to the Characterisation of Pultrusion’.  Liverpool Conference 1988

‘Compliance of Composite Reinforcement Materials’ FRC90.

Web site for James Quinn Associates Ltd


Michael Garnish  CEng BSc

Michael Garnish, age 64, is a Chartered Engineer with a BSc degree in Engineering Science awarded  in 1970.

Initial experience in composite material design and fabrication was gained in the marine and hovercraft industry in the early 1970’s and at that time Mr. Garnish was admitted to full membership of the Royal Institution of Naval Architects.  In mid 1975 he left the marine industry and since that date has been actively involved in the production, design and development of composite tubes and piping systems.

Appointments in the composite pipe industry commenced with Redland Pipes Ltd as Assistant Production Manager later transferring to a post as R & D Manager with the same company.  Work during this period encompassed design and development of composite pipes and structural tubes.

Mr. Garnish has had experience of manufacture of pipes by all the major production methods, namely discontinuous filament winding, continuous filament winding and centrifugal casting.  Redland Pipes Ltd was the first user of the Drostholm continuous pipe manufacturing process and held exclusive European rights to that process for some years.  Mr. Garnish was involved in extensive development work on that process and incorporated sand filling in pipes made by that process in 1978.

He was appointed as Technical Director of Fibaflo, in 1990.

In 2000 the company was purchased as a Management Buy-Out from the corporate owners by Mr. Garnish and 2 associates.

In 2001 Fibaflo purchased Fiberdur gmbh of Aldenhoven in Germany, another large composite pipe manufacturer, and Mr. Garnish was Technical Director of that company also.

Mr. Garnish joined Deva Composites Ltd as Technical Director in early 2004.  Deva was primarily interested in manufacturing high performance structural tubular components from composite materials in a series of specialist niche markets. He left full time employment with Deva Composites  in 2005 but was retained as Technical Director and a consultant of that Company.

At the end of 2005 Mr Garnish established his own company MG Composites Ltd, to pursue a career as an independent consultant in the composites industry.

Throughout his career Mr Garnish has been extensively involved in the installation, commissioning and testing of complex piping systems at home and abroad, working in UK, mainland Europe, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, India, Abu Dhabi, Oman  and Libya on pumping mains, sewerage schemes,  water process and treatment plants, desalination plants, power stations, chemical process plants, mining schemes ,  and water well schemes.  Installation was also undertaken on offshore oil rig installations and shipboard projects using composite pipes for ballast water systems, firemains and passive fire protection systems.

In addition to design and installation of piping systems Mr. Garnish has been involved for many years in the design, manufacture and supply of complex composite structural cylinders for a wide variety of applications including medical body scanners, offshore buoyancy projects, fire protection of offshore structures, paper industry core tubes and photogravure rolls, aerial antennae shrouds, anti-ballistic and blast containment use, pneumatic cylinders  and many marine related applications.

Mr. Garnish currently holds a patent on composite water well screen filters for deep water wells and oil well technology.

Primary activity in  2006/2007 was the procurement and installation of facilities for a large filament winding factory in Azerbaijan to manufacture approx 275 km of 2000mm diameter potable water pipe for pressure duties of 10 bar to 25 bar, together with provision of technical support  for the project.  The scope of works undertaken for this large scale project included design of the pipes and joint systems to AWWA M45 and C950.

In 2007 consultancy contracts were signed for technical support and installation of a large pipe winding factory in Iran.

A number of projects including  work with a major composite manufacturer in India, and with a company in Europe for support and technology provision for discontinuous and continuous winding machinery in a number of geographical markets has been undertaken.

Technical support has been provided to a pipe production plant in Romania.

Design work on storage tanks and vessels has been undertaken for a number of clients.

A process for the production of structural tubes in the UK, by RTM process rather than by filament winding has been developed with the tubes designed for resistance to external mechanical stresses

Investigations into the failure of joints on a power plant in USA have been undertaken with review of the design methods and calculations used.

Having developed  technical and commercial interests in NDE of composites, using a microwave based technology,  independent inspection of power station piping installations has been undertaken on behalf of the end users.  Negotiations for further development of the NDE business for on-line automated inspection of production with pipe manufacturing companies is in hand, and there is on-going development work of the use of this technology in military applications and in examination of a number of other types of composite structures including storage tanks.

Papers on filament winding and NDE by microwave technology have been presented at various conferences.


Christopher Smith  BSc

Chris studied metallurgy and materials science at Leeds University, graduating in 1978.

He joined Lucas Industries at their Research Centre in Shirley, West Midlands, in 1979 where he specialised in metallography, microscopy and failure analysis.

In 1984 Chris joined Metallurgical Services, manufacturer of metallographic preparation equipment and UK distributor of Olympus microscopes, as technical support to the field sales team.  In 1986, Metallurgical Services merged with Banner Scientific to become Buehler UK, where Chris was instrumental in developing novel and innovative techniques for the metallographic preparation and inspection of emerging engineering materials such as plastic and metal matrix composites and engineering ceramics.

Chris joined Technical Fibre Products, manufacturer of wet laid technical non wovens,  in 1989, where after a period in a technical support role, he became Product Manager, and subsequently Business Manager for their range of specialist surfacing veils designed for composites applications.

Chris left Technical Fibre Products in 2004 and since 2005 has worked with M Wright & Sons as Business Development Associate, assisting in the development of their 3D woven preform business.

In early 2007 Chris formed CHM Composites Ltd, working in partnership with a number of specialist non wovens manufacturers supplying a wide range of technical non wovens to the composites industry and subsequently  developing the business to include the supply of milled carbon fibre, milled and pulped para aramid fibre, fibre recycling, technical narrow fabrics and technical authorship.

Web site for CHM Composites Ltd