Sir Frank Holroyd, a Past-President of the Society, died on 18 January 2014.

Sir Frank was born on 30 August 1935 and educated at Southend-on-Sea Grammar School. He later completed an MSc at Cranfield University with whom he forged a long-standing relationship that included Membership of the University’s Court and culminated in his award of an Honorary Doctorate.

After joining the RAF in 1956, Sir Frank was employed in a range of operational unit, experimental and staff engineering appointments. Commencing in 1972, he held the appointment of OC Engineering Wing at RAF Brize Norton until, in 1974, he was promoted to Group Captain rank and appointed Station Commander Radio School RAF Locking.

Following his promotion to Air Commodore rank in 1977, Sir Frank filled two Director of Engineering appointments before attending the RCDS course in 1981. In the following year he was promoted to AVM and posted to a Director General appointment within the Procurement Executive before moving to HQ STC as Air Officer Engineering in 1986.

Sir Frank’s RAF career culminated in his appointment to the dual posts of Chief Engineer and Chief of Logistics Support, in 1988 and 1989 respectively. During his tenure, he played a central role in the radical re-structuring of the RAF’s support strategies and structures necessitated by the fundamental change in East-West relationships.

On his retirement from the RAF in 1991, Sir Frank’s strategic awareness, shrewd judgement, business instincts and managerial abilities attracted the strong interest of private sector companies. As a result, Sir Frank’s business career has included Chairmanships of AVR Communications, Composite Technology, Electronica (UK), Military Aircraft Spares, Troy Court Management and Military Asset Services, as well as Directorships of Admiral, REW Communications Services, Ultra Electronics and Airinmar.

Sir Frank was President of the Royal Aeronautical Society for 1992-1993.

Sir Frank has travelled extensively both for business and pleasure. In his later years he lived in Somerset where he divided his time between shooting, gardening and maintaining his 14th century house.

AVM David Saunders


3 March 2014