After a long history with HERA as our longest serving employee – we’d like to announce that our Welding and Inspection Engineer Peter Hayward is retiring at the end of July.


Fore-telling the future

Peter came to New Zealand in 1983. He left a good job, with the Atomic Energy Commission in the UK, as he saw a better future for his family in New Zealand.

His first job in NZ was as a Senior Mechanical Inspector at the Marsden Point Oil Refinery expansion. He covered a lot of bases in that role, including inspection of installations of pressure equipment, structural fabrication and coatings.

Welding Inspection Specialist Peter Hayward.

From there he moved to the Certification Board for Inspection Personnel (CBIP) in 1984. Peter held the then Chair, Gary O’Keefe, in high regard. Remembering a time in Hamilton with Gary, Peter foretold “things are going to change – people will have to adhere to quality standards.”

Peter has worked tirelessly ever since, to ensure that his passionate belief came true.


His-Story with HERA

Gavin Fletcher, HERA CEO from 1980-1986 recorded the following about Peter’s time with CBIP and inception into HERA:


“There was a 20-year tradition for the Certification Board for Inspection Personnel (CBIP) to employ the Technical Manager Peter Hayward as its sole employee, and for HERA to host the Technical Manager and to pay CBIP for his provision of HERA training courses. In adopting a pathway towards international accreditation, the CBIP Board requested separation of the training and examination function and as a result a number of significant organisational changes were agreed with CBIP. The most significant one was the transfer of Peter Hayward to become HERA staff in 2002 and the consequent provision of the CBIP services under contract to CBIP.

Having achieved several level 3 NDT and ACCP Professional level 3 qualifications, which are the highest possible and suited to the requirements of European and American inspection authorities, Peter is well placed to support with new vigour the members in their staff training, quality control and inspection requirements.”


Gavin going on to say that his qualifications in the non-destructive testing field were exceptional, and without peer in New Zealand.


Peter also thought highly of Gavin, admiring that he always sought people’s input. He can specifically recall Gavin asking staff if they thought buying the land in Manukau where HERA House is now located, was going to be a good idea. A real moment in HERA history there!

Peter doesn’t think there has been a fundamental shift in our activities over the years. He notes that Former Director Wolfgang Scholtz was able to create the NZ Welding Centre. And, that he himself was able to bring a range of training and inspection programs (welding, pressure equipment, cranes, elevated platforms etc) that are all still thriving.

Some of you may recall that Peter actually retired from HERA some time ago in 2010 after 20 years of service. But he obviously couldn’t stay away for long!

Steel pearls of wisdom

When asked what he is most proud of in his career, Peter humbly replied “it’s my integrity. That, and the fact I always try to be very honest and determine what the other party wants to achieve so I can guide them accordingly.”

Peter remarked that when he first arrived, New Zealand industry was extremely fragmented. No two fabricators had the same goals in place. This made it very difficult to introduce unified quality controls.

Noting “one of the most satisfying parts of my role was ensuring we eventually met both international and national obligations. For example, my involvement with AS/NZS ISO 3834 – Quality requirements for fusion welding of metallic materials.”

Peter also enjoyed his time in training for quality improvements, which will leave an ongoing legacy in the form of all the professionals who undertook that training. This has, no doubt, improved the practices within our industry across the board.


Our Senior Welding Engineer Alan McClintock, and long-term colleague of Peter’s, saying “Peter’s greatest contribution has been the expertise he has passed on through his training and consulting activities.”

“His key strength is his willingness to share this knowledge and experience – he’s always ready to assist when asked.”


Peter’s advice to new engineers is always try your best. Saying ‘it’s important you think about what your career goals are and if your job scope will satisfy your expectations.”

“If you make sure your product is right before it goes out the door, and try not to pretend to know more than you do, you’ll do well.

“It all comes down to being content with your work, enjoying it, and being happy with what you’ve got,” he said.


Moving forward

Peter emphasises the importance of family and maintaining strong family links. So, it comes as no surprise that, post-retirement, he’s most looking forward to spending more time with his wife, Pauline. And also making sure his children and grandchildren are happy and looked after as best he can. As well, as “pottering” around his property.

Peter will certainly be missed by our team. So I’m sure we’ll be very quick to take him on in his offer after he mentioned he’d provide support to our Welding Centre if required!

I hope you’ll join me in thanking Peter for being such a core part of our history. He’s certainly helped lead significant change within our industry, and has been an important part of our journey to support our members.