The Association of Polish Engineers in Great Britain was founded in September 1940. The first annual general meeting was held at the Polish Hearth Club (which continues to exist today at 55 Princes Gate in Kensington) whilst the sound of air raid sirens announced the beginning of the bombing of London.

Initially, the main goal of the Institution was to bring together Polish technical forces in the fight against Germany. Later, the Association’s activities were expanded to preserve and advance technical knowledge during the post-war period.

Over the last 60 years the Association underwent many changes with the aim of adapting to the ever changing needs of the membership. Currently the main aim of the Association is to support the personal and professional advancement within the engineering and science community.

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The 1940's

7th September 1940

Founding Meeting – Polish Hearth Club in London – the first general meeting was held with the sound of sirens announcing bombing raids on London. The Association numbered 220 members. 


The number of members increases to 1000. There are 11 professional branches and the Association of Polish Electricians SARP, together with Polish Engineers’ Associations in Scotland and Teheran are formed. In 1945, soldiers of the Polish 2nd Corps formed a further Association of Polish Engineers in Rome. The total number of members increases to above 5100. 


2nd Corps soldiers form engineers Association in Rome. Total number of Institution members increases above 1500.

Main wartime accomplishments 

  • Bringing together of all technical forces working towards victory over Germany 
  • Polish Army Radio Workshop – ENIGMA 
  • New inventions and improvements to existing war equipment (mine detectors, anti-aircraft cannon “Polsten”, submarine detection, miniaturisation of radio, tank periscope, aircraft bomb ejectors, etc.) 
  • The founding and taking up of posts in; the Army Institute of Technology, Department of Technical Education of the Air Force Inspectorate, Bomb Disposal Engineers Research Department, the Centre for Group Technical Education, the Army Institute of Geography and the Polish Army Radio Workshop.  
  • More than 800 members of the Association worked in British industry and technical institutions.

In 1942, a new Constitution was drafted. In addition to war-related activities, the Association formed a new sub-committee whose task was to appraise issues relating to life in post-war Poland, including that of higher education. This is how the Council for Academic Higher Education – RAST was established, and the Polish Polytechnic was launched – with the faculties of mechanical, engineering, electrical, chemical, mining and steel, architecture and economics. Up to 1947, RAST issued 180 engineering diplomas. Thereafter, the Polish Polytechnic was transformed into the Polish University College Association Limited – PUCAL. By the end of its existence PUCAL had issued 750 diplomas.  

In 1948 the Association, for formal reasons, transformed itself into The Institution of Polish Engineers in Great Britain and purchased, with the aid of funds provided by its members, its first headquarters; 148 Holland Road W14. “Engineer House” was home to all the professional sections together the administration of the Institution until 1953. The wartime and post-war period was also the time of defining the Institution’s mission statement, which has for the most part, remained unchanged to this day. 

The 1950's

In 1954, the Institution was involved in saving the Polish Library, which the British authorities wanted to liquidate after the closure of PUC (Polish University College). Public action in defence of the Library, organized by STP, saved the collection of books and documents that then found shelter in the PUCAL building at 5 Princess Gardens in South Kensington. STP also then moved its headquarters to this building.

In September 1958, the Institution released the first issue of the quarterly “Science and Technology” with a print run of over a thousand copies. The journal consisted of original articles, reports, reviews and monographs, as well as reprints from other journals. Among the authors were prof. dr J. Mazur (physicist) and engineers: B. Budziński (architect), T. Tchórzewski (electrical engineer), S. Ziębiński (mechanical engineer) and T. Prus-Chąciński (civil engineer).

The 1960's

In 1963, together with PUCAL, STP launched the initiative of building the Polish Social and Cultural Centre in London (POSK).

During the Institution’s Extraordinary General Meeting on 12th June 1964, STP resolved to donate all of its assets to POSK, in exchange securing for itself a minimal rent in the newly built centre. PUCAL handed over its property on a similar basis, and thus, together a large estate consisting of a number of large houses in the central districts of London was handed over. As a result of these decisions, many STP members got involved in the construction of POSK.

The building work started in March 1965. Of the 100 initial members of POSK, 35 were members of STP. The engineers felt that they were particularly responsible for the realisation of the project. From the moment the decision was taken, it took 10 years for POSK to be built. There were various challenges; financial, constructional, health & safety and as a result parts of the project had to be revised.

The determination of the members of the Institution and especially its Chair, Professor Roman Wajda, who tirelessly drove the project forward and who later became the first chairman of POSK, helped them to overcome all the hurdles associated with the Centre’s construction. A lot of money, effort and health of the founders was sacrificed in the process. Unfortunately professor Wajda died prematurely and did not witness the day when STP moved to POSK.

The 1970's

In September 1970, the 30th anniversary of STP coincided with the Congress of Contemporary Polish Science and Culture in Exile. Present were several hundred scientists and Poles displaced after the 2nd world war now living in almost all parts of the globe. Meetings and numerous exhibitions took place at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering of Imperial College London. Preparations for the Congress took 3 years and the organising committee was chaired by the then chairman of STP who was also the chairman of POSK, Professor Roman Wajda. The committee worked in the ‘under-construction’ POSK, at which time and as part of the Congress, there was an exhibition of historical collections belonging to the Polish Library in London.

A few years later in 1974, the Institution organized a public exhibition of projects and work carried out by Polish technicians and engineers. The main goal of the project was the desire that work and achievements of Polish engineers outside of their homeland should not be forgotten. Since 1977, STP has had its own office in POSK. Thanks to the efforts of the Board and members of the Institution, the life of the organization, which for 10 years, had focused all of its efforts and resources on the construction of the Polish Centre, began again – readings, social events, monthly and occasional meetings once again became the main activity of STP.

The 1980's

On the occasion of the 40th anniversary of STP, from 30th May to 1st June 1980, a gathering of the members of the Institution and other invited guests was convened in London. It was attended by some 150 people. As part of the program, an exhibition of work (around 50 display boards) of STP members was opened at POSK illustrating the achievements of Polish engineers in exile, showing their contribution to the economic and cultural life of the countries in which they now found themselves. Amongst almost 50 exhibitors from the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States, were representatives of almost all branches of industry, engineering, construction, research institutes and education. The main display board showed the stages of the Institution’s development during its 40-year existence.

The 1990's

STP’s 50th anniversary celebrations took place on Sunday 23rd September 1990. On this occasion, an extended and special edition (nr. 60) of the journal Engineering and Science was published. This jubilee issue contained a forward from the chairman of the Institution and WWII RAF pilot; Adam Ostrowski:

“The Golden Jubilee closes the period of great achievements of the Polish engineer. Those who were caught up by mobilization in 1939 served Poland with pride. Along the paths which fate led them, their technical education and practical approach in dealing with challenges, consistently set them apart from their piers”

These words were true recognition for the post war endeavours of STP and the engineers involved with the Institution. Equally, the 1990’s were the start of changes within the Institution and a new era of its activities. Political changes emerging in 1989 and leading to the collapse of the Iron Curtain, presented new challenges for the Institution.

STP remained an ‘Institution’ until the 1990’s whereupon it reverted back to being an ‘Association’ due to administrative reasons. 

The 2000's

Between 22nd and 25th September 2000, London was the location for a gathering of technical organisations from Austria, France, Poland, Switzerland, USA and Great Britain, celebrating the 60th anniversary of STP in the UK. The event was conjoined with a conference under the banner ‘Poles Together’.

In 2003, the Association’s website www.stpuk.org was launched and this was also the year that an initiative of lectures with the title “Thursdays4You” was started. The lectures covered a variety of popular subjects including various engineering disciplines, technical matters, architecture, construction etc. The cycles of lectures continue to date.

23rd April 2004 saw the inaugural meeting of The European Federation of Polish Science and Engineering Associations. The 4 founding Associations were:

  • The Association of Polish Engineers and Technicians in Austria
  • The Association of Polish Engineers and Technicians in France
  • The Federal Union of Polish Engineers and Technicians in Germany
  • The Association of Polish Engineers in Great Britain

In 2006, in response to an appeal from President Ryszard Kaczorowski to help young polish engineers arriving in the UK, PUNO (Polish University in Exile) launched the first AutoCAD courses as a joint venture with STP.

In 2008 STP set up a Technical Academy and started running courses in computer aided design and helping young engineers to attain further qualifications and experience.

The 2010's

n 2010 and as part of the Association’s 70th anniversary celebrations a conference under the heading “a brief history of STP in the UK – 1940-2010” took place. The conference was dedicated to the memory of President Ryszard Kaczorowski, an honorary member of STP. Special patronage of the event was taken on by Professor Jerzy Buzek, President of the European Parliament. Taking part in the conference were delegations of engineers from Poland, Europe, USA and the republic of South Africa.


STP was honoured with the “Pro Memoria” medal in recognition of those who fought on all fronts: individuals and organisations particularly dedicated to the remembrance of those and their efforts in the fight for an independent Poland both during the II World War and in the post war period.

In 2012, the Technical Academy expanded its curriculum to include courses in Revit. It also formed ‘Design Academy’ which amongst other runs courses in Interior Design.

The following events took place in 2014:

  • The BIM conference for Poland
  • Refurbishment of the Association’s office in POSK
  • Introduction of a monitoring program for young engineers (mentoring?)


  • A newly modernised website is launched together with an internal intranet.
  • The start of a project called ‘The promotion of science and engineering in Polish Saturday Schools.


  • An inaugural weekend initiative called ‘Science Day’ takes place, aimed at promoting interest in science and its uses in both Polish and British life.


  • The drafting of a new Constitution and the transformation of the Association into a CIO (Charitable Incorporated Organisation) registered with the Charity Commission.
  • BIM for POSK. An initiative to generate a BIM model of POSK.


  • Drafting of new management procedures for STP
  • Achieving the status of Professional Affiliate of the British Engineering Council.

Association Chairs

1940 – 1941
prof. dr inż. Stanisław Płużański
1941 – 1942
inż. J Barcikowski
1942 – 1944
prof. inż. Feliks Olszak
1944 – 1950
inż. Józef Zenon Różański
inż. Antoni Wasiutyński
1952 – 1954
inż. Marian Antoni Batkowski
1954 – 1957
prof. inż. Roman Wajda
1957 – 1958
inż. Henryk Mateusz Hajducki
1958 – 1960
prof. inż. Roman Wajda
1960 – 1961
inż. Marian Antoni Batkowski
1961 – 1962
inż. Czesław Woyno
1962 – 1963
dr inż. Stanisław Kazimierz Liszka
1963 – 1966
dr inż. Stanisław Wyrobek
1966 – 1967
inż. Zbigniew Świdziński
1967 – 1970
dr inż. Stanisław Wyrobek
1970 – 1972
inż. Henryk Mateusz Hajducki
1972 – 1973
inż. Jerzy Stanisław Kucięba
1973 – 1975
prof. dr inż. Mieczysław Sas-Skowroński
1975 – 1980
inż. Jerzy Anatol Reicher
1980 – 1981
gen. dypl. inż. Jerzy Przemysław Morawicz
1981 – 1985
inż. Józef P. Baraniecki
1985 – 1988
dr inż Jan Dzienisiewicz
​​​1988 – 2000
inż. Adam Ostrowski
2000 – 2004
prof. dr inż. Ryszard Chmielowiec
2004 – 2006
dr inż. Andrzej Fórmaniak
2006 – 2009
mgr inż. Krzysztof Ruszczyński
prof. dr inż. Ryszard Chmielowiec​
mgr inż Piotr Dudek
dr inż. Marian Zastawny
mgr inż. Piotr Świeboda
mgr inż. Anna Kopyto
2023 -
dr inż. Marian Zastawny