Julian Thomson (above) has been appointed as chief designer of Jaguar’s new advanced design studio in Coventry. He will lead a team of 15 people and will report to Jaguar’s director of design, Ian Callum.

Colin Dodge has been appointed deputy managing director of Nissan Motor Manufacturing UK. He joined Nissan in 1984 as paintshop manager. Since then he has moved up through the ranks at the Sunderland plant, and became executive director of operations in 1999.

Jon Burch, Royal Navy director general (aircraft), is to join the Royal Academy of Engineering as executive secretary in May. He is a qualified nuclear reactor operator and served in both diesel and nuclear powered submarines during the Falklands War. He was part of the team which privatised the Royal Dockyards and spent two years commanding Devonport, the largest naval base in western Europe.

He succeeds John Appleton who is to retire. Burch joined the Navy in 1966 as an electrical engineering graduate.

Gordon Semple (right) has taken over as general manager at GE Fanuc Automation in Milton Keynes. A University College electrical engineering graduate, his experience includes spells working for British Federal, Lumonics, Robert Bosch Automation and Control Techniques.

Paul Kirk (right) has been appointed managing director of GT Railway Maintenance. Kirk joins the company from Rover, where he was a member of the board and group manufacturing director.

He replaces Ian Buchanan, who has moved to GTRM shareholder Alstom.

Peter Currie is the new managing director of high-precision rollers and cylinders manufacturer Park Cross. Currie joined the company in 1970 and has risen from shopfloor level.

Weir Pumps has appointed Stuart Oakley as director of oil, downhole and subsea. He has previously worked for Smedvig Offshore and McDermott International.

Bernard Molloy has joined lift truck manufacturer Lansing Linde as managing director of its UK operation. Molloy returns to the industry he left 12 years ago after spending 18 years with BT Rolatruc.