Royalties, patents and sub-contracting: the curious case of the Hawker Hart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aircraft procurement by the Air Ministry in the inter-war period was beset by
various problems, with numerous solutions proposed in an attempt to resolve them. One such potential solution was the proposal to sub-contract the production to other aircraft manufacturers within the Air Ministry’s ring of firms who were allocated firm orders. This action by the Air Ministry, it was believed, would spread the technical knowledge of aircraft production to a wider base that could be built upon in a time of national emergency or war. This approach was also a way of ‘artificially’ keeping firms alive where they had been unsuccessful in being awarded contracts. Such a scheme would, from the industry’s perspective, however, lead to less orders for firms successful in aircraft design and allow the potential sharing of industry secrets amongst direct competitors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)46-59
Number of pages13
JournalAir and Space Power Review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 29 Nov 2021


  • Aircraft industry
  • Hawker Hart
  • Royal Air Force
  • Inter-war period


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