The chairman of Black Country-based aerospace engineering group Hampson Industries is due to step down in a few months time - to be replaced by BAE director Chris Geoghegan.

The top-level change was announced yesterday as Hampson gave shareholders an interim update on trading.

Chairman Tony Gilroy said: "The board expects the company's results for the year ending March 31, 2008 to be in line with its expectations and looks forward to another successful year."

He added: "Having been a member of the board for over five years, I would like to take this opportunity to announce to shareholders that it is my intention to retire from the board as chairman and non-executive director on 30 November 2007.

"During this time the company has seen many changes and accomplished many significant achievements.

"We have a clearly-focused strategy for growth and I am confident my retirement comes at a time when the company is well- positioned to continue to generate long-term value for our shareholders.

"I am delighted to announce that the board has approached Chris Geoghegan, a former joint-chief operating officer and current executive director of BAE Systems, with an invitation to join the board, initially as a non-executive director and, with effect from November 30, as chairman and he has indicated he will accept that position.

"A further separate announcement concerning Mr Geoghegan's proposed appointment will follow shortly."

Hampson, which has its headquarters in Brierley Hill and a manufacturing operation in Birmingham, is one of the firms involved in the production of the Eclipse 500 Very Light Jet - a programme which has already received nearly 3,000 orders.

Hampson supplies stabilisers, rudders and other equipment for the Eclipse 500, which is made by the Eclipse Aviation Corporation.