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Caring and sharing Grantham resident’s amazing aerospace career

Maud King, aged 98, has enjoyed a remarkable career in the aircraft industry.

Maud King, aged 98, has enjoyed a remarkable career in the aircraft industry.

Two carers at a Grantham nursing home were so inspired by a resident’s story that they have gone out of their way to ensure it is told.

Katarzyna Cunnington and Ewa Chlpk who both work at St. Edmund’s on Worcester Road were fascinated to hear how 98-year-old Maud King has spent most of her life helping to build planes, including during the Second World War.

Maud began working for British Aerospace in the factories, but was soon promoted to purchasing officer when she was still in her 20s.

“I bought everything, right from the smallest rivet up to the outer carriage - everything apart from the engines which were supplied by the ministry,” she explains.

Perhaps the most interesting items she was responsible for sourcing were the ejector seats, including for the English Electric Lightning used during the Cold War.

“The Lightning was a very fast aircraft. The pilots were warned if anything went wrong to use the ejector seat,” Maud remembers.

However the 21 different types of aircraft Maud worked on during her career only got faster, with one of the last being the Concorde.

Maud remembers standing with colleagues and waving the airliner off on its first ever flight.

“It was a marvellous job, and I made good friends,” she added.

Moreover Maud’s love of aircrafts extended outside of work, as she regularly visited airshows such as the world-renowned event at Farnborough.

Now unable to attend in person, her carers arranged for Maud to receive a brochure from this year’s show by contacting organisers and letting them know about Maud’s connection to the industry.

Katarzyna said: “Coming from Poland I know how important people like Maud were during the war. I wanted to make sure her story wasn’t forgotten.”

 

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