Roke History

Roke Manor Research takes its name from the 19th century Manor House which sits in the countryside in our 22 acre estate near Romsey.

Plessey Research Roke Manor Limited

After acquiring the Roke Manor estate in 1956, the Plessey Company founded Roke Manor Research. Initially staffed by 28 engineers, the company undertook research into military communications systems.

Throughout the 1960s, 70s and 80s, Roke Manor Research grew considerably as the site's reputation attracted key technology contracts in communications and radar. Initially most of the work was for defence applications, but in the mid 1980s work began on Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) switching for the commercial telecommunications market and GSM cellular telephony.


Following the take-over of Plessey by Siemens and GEC in 1990, Siemens took part-ownership of Roke Manor Research in 1990. In 1991, GEC sold its 50% share holding in Roke Manor Research and the company became wholly owned by Siemens.


Roke is now wholly owned by Chemring Group PLC. Chemring acquired Roke from Siemens on Thursday 30th September 2010. The acquisition of Roke will substantially enhance Chemring’s existing technologies in a number of key market sectors and will provide a growing number of products and technologies that will allow the Group to enter adjacent attractive, high growth markets.