aircraft launch off HMS Splendid

Our History

Telemotor steering systems, aircraft arrestor systems, cordite and steam catapults guide early innovation

MacTaggart, Scott & Co Ltd was founded by Hugh MacTaggart and Robert Grigor Scott in 1898. World War One (WWI) saw the Company making steering telemotors. Hugh MacTaggart's attendance at the Admiralty in 1915, to address vent valve operation, led to long term involvement with submarines.

The Admiralty link soon saw development of seaplane catapults and arresting gear confirming the company's commitment to the British Navy, especially during WWII to meet the demand for the Fleet's carrier building programme. Submarine equipment production now included vent valves, bow caps, mast hoisting jiggers and torpedo loading presses.

The end of WWII allowed the company to develop pumps and motors. The successful development and running of the RHP (Radial Hydraulic Pump) led to today's "stealth" enhancing motors and pumps in submarines.

During the 1950s reliable and economic operation of MacTaggart Scott's hydraulic deck machinery so impressed the Admiralty that they reversed their preference for traditional electric systems. The company provided anchor windlasses, winches and Replenishment At Sea equipment.

The Navy's requirement to handle helicopters and MacTaggart Scott's reputation with arrester gear led to the production of an elegant and practical solution which allowed cross handling of helicopters.

These same design skills went on to provide lifts for aircraft carriers, transferring aircraft between hangar and flight decks. More recently, weapons, ammunition and stores lifts were designed to meet the demands of Navies around the World. The requirement to handle helicopters, aircraft, stores and ammunition safely and efficiently was fully proven by the company.

Nuclear submarines led to design and manufacture of retracting bow planes, shrouded masts and the launch and recovery of communication equipment; also significantly, the company won its first US submarine equipment order in 1983.

The end of the Cold War meant development of overseas markets as Royal Navy demands changed. Export markets were developed and the company is now supplying to a global market. MacTaggart Scott continues its commitment to both UK and overseas naval projects. The future is likely to see continued supply to the global market.