About Us

Heritage spanning over 100 years, combined with talented teams and experience.  We are more than just a Wheel & Structures manufacturer.

Experienced, talented and focused team

At GKN Wheels & Structures we are proud of the people who work for us. Our people are talented and experienced, they are also committed and hardworking.  Always looking to better ourselves, our products and service - we work together to provide you with the very best.

What We Do

We are proud to have an experienced, talented and incredibly focused team of people, who share a common vision of making our business the best wheel and structures organisation in the world.  Our product development, test facilities and manufacturing capabilities are truly world-class and are supported by our dedicated team of product managers, commercial and engineering experts who are passionate about what we do.

Executive Team

The GKN Wheels & Structures' Executive Team is responsible for the long-term success of the business, focusing on meeting our strategic objectives in a sustainable and responsible manner.

Phil Dodd - Managing Director

Phil Dodds

Managing Director

Phil has significant experience of leading International businesses across Europe, China and South Africa, as well as business turn around and integration programmes.

An experienced, international Managing Director with a successful track record of leading significant operations and change management programs within the manufacturing sector, both in the UK and Overseas, Phil is a practitioner of Lean Business, to deliver sustained performance improvement.

Previous roles have included Managing Director at GKN Sheepbridge Stokes and GKN FAD, Operations Director at Weir Minerals and Senior level positions at Competitive Dynamics International and Fusion Group.

Steve Bidmead

Interim Finance Director

Returned to GKN in July 2019

Over 40 years’ experience in senior Financial roles in manufacturing  and engineering companies, based in the Midlands. Sectors include automotive, steel, consumer goods, and construction.

GKN 2002 - 2014

  •   FD GKN Wheels
  •   FD GKN Wheels & Structures
  •   FD Operations GKN Land Systems

International experience:

Mostly acquired within GKN, covering Europe, USA and China

A commercial and strategic Finance Director


Fellow of Chartered Institute of Management Accountants

Emma Owen

HR Director

Emma joined GKN in 1990, working as HR manager on site at GKN Aerospace, Filton.

She has previous experience at both Airbus and BAE Systems, and in 2009 she successfully transitioned a manufacturing business of 1,800 employees from Airbus to GKN.

Emma has an HR degree from the University of the West of England and a CIPD Master.

Hao Chu

Sales Director Asia

Hao joined GKN Land Systems in April 2007, with a Master of Engineering degree from Shanghai JiaoTong University, since then he has held a number of positions in functions including Purchasing, Supply Chain, Operations, Sales and Business Development.

During this time, Hao has managed a range of projects relating to GKN Land Systems’ expansion in China, and recently oversaw the company’s opening of their newest facility in the country.

Vicki Rowley

HSE & Risk Director

Vicki joined GKN In July 2013 where she worked in Group HSE as a Group HSE Auditor, covering all divisions and locations within GKN, ensuring HSE practices and processes were adhered to throughout the business.

Vicki has in total nearly 15 years’ HSE experience, working in various HSE roles at companies such as Interserve, Rockline Industries and Toyota.

Paul Gurney

Commercial and OPEX Director

Paul joined GKN Land Systems from May Gurney in October 2013, where he worked as Group Procurement Director with responsibility for procurement across 80 UK locations.

Whilst at May Gurney, Paul led a programme to transform the procurement function and was part of the management team responsible for the successful sale of May Gurney to Kier Group Plc – a leading FTSE250 building and civil engineering business.

Paul holds a BSc Honours degree in Business and Engineering from Sheffield University, as well as being a member of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing.

John Madsen

Engineering and Product Management Director

John joined GKN in January 1994 with a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Southern Denmark.

He has spent over half his career with GKN, working outside his home country in locations in Denmark, the UK, Germany and China. Focusing on Business Development throughout the 1990s, he became part of the Global Strategic Key Account sales team in the 2000s.

John has seen growth of the GKN Wheels business from just two sites to seven and was appointed Global Product Management and Engineering Director – Wheels for GKN Land Systems in 2014.

From 1910 to the best Wheels manufacturing in the World

GKN Wheels' history dates back to 1910, when the first steel wheel was manufactured in Joseph Sankey's factory in Telford, England. Since then the business has continually evolved to meet the changing market needs from manufacturing wheels for automotive and off-highway, to armoured vehicles, tractor cabs and high volume automotive chassis, telephone kiosks, wheelbarrows and war time spitfires.

The Beginning

The story of GKN was forged in the first fires of the Industrial Revolution. It is a story of change and innovation taking in the birth of rail, the invention of the car, the development of flight and man’s adventures in space.

The GKN story began with the founding of the Dowlais Ironworks Co. on 19 September 1759 in Dowlais, near Merthyr Tydfil in South Wales. Few can have imagined how this small business would develop during the next 250 years.

The Wheel

GKN Wheels' history dates back to the early 1900's.  In 1908, Jospeh Sankeys developed and patented the first pressed and welded, detachable motor car wheel, known as the ‘All Steel Wheel’.  In June 1910 the wheel went into production at the Hadley Castle Works in Telford, England — the home of GKN Wheels today

Since then the business has continually evolved to meet the changing market needs from manufacturing wheels for automotive and off-highway, to armoured vehicles, tractor cabs and high volume automotive chassis, telephone kiosks, wheelbarrows and wartime spitfires.

The steel wheel was strong, mass-produced, economical and represented a leap forward for industry at the time. It may have been a simple spoked design but it bore the hallmarks of a company growing through innovative products and delivering solutions to the marketplace in a cost-effective way.


Today, with extensive experience in off-highway markets, GKN Wheels & Structures has built a leading organisation that develops innovative solutions for tomorrow’s challenges. Driven by a constant desire to provide engineering excellence, they design technologically advanced products that allow customers to be both efficient and environmentally sustainable.

GKN Wheels has extensive product design and development capabilities to meet changing client and market needs in the most challenging environments.  Investment in research and development, and commitment to engineering and design excellence lies at the heart of the GKN Wheels & Structures business strategy and it has a renowned reputation. The products we produce showcase outstanding durability, ease of use and low operating costs.

We are working on industry-leading innovations that will meet the demand for bigger payloads, increased speed and ever more stringent technical specifications. Offering customers and markets support locations globally, with manufacturing bases in China, Denmark, the UK and USA as well as three major, world-class test centres in Brescia, Italy, Illinois, USA and Telford, UK.

At GKN Wheels we truly support our customers and markets with a global reach and local presence.


GKN Wheels supports the local communities in which it operates and encourages ethical policies, practices and initiatives across its businesses.


The health and safety of our employees and those who interact with us, our facilities and our products is always a priority.


At GKN Wheels & Structures we can deliver bespoke training sessions for your teams.


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