During the winter months, it is no surprise that the nation’s roads can come under some strain. Not only is winter driving more challenging for the country’s motorist, road conditions worsen at this time of year. With rain, ice, and cold temperatures, road surfaces are prone to crack; road markings fade. Therefore, at this time of year, Wilson & Scott undertake a wide range of Maintenance and Repair jobs.
One of these such works I recently visited was a contract from National Highways, on the A36. Our crews, supervised by Russell Small, carried out a variety of tasks to ensure that the trunk road continued to safely serve the local residents. Some of the work that was going on included handwork, joint sealing, and machining the edge and centre lines of the carriageway. Routine maintenance such as this provides a critical service to local communities, keeping the country moving.
As a company, we continue to strive for excellence in all aspects of our work. While marking in the new year, a range of training has been taking place across the board at Wilson & Scott. This ensures that all of our people (operatives and office personnel alike) are well equipped for the roles they do.
Last week, all Chargehands and Experiences Second Men attended the CITB SSSTS. The Supervisor Safety Training Scheme is a two day course that provides delegates with Site Supervisory roles. It also gives the knowledge required to aide in safely managing a site.
Moreover, all of our people have undertaken a ‘fit for work’ assessment. The Safety Critical Assessment makes sure that everyone who works for Wilson & Scott is safe to do their jobs.
As the week draws to a close and Christmas is upon us, we will be closing our doors until the 4th of January. Our people have done a brilliant job this year, and we would all like to take a moment to thank our operatives and office staff alike for the work that they do.
The festivities have come into full swing at our Poyle Office, where the consignment of Christmas Turkeys arrived. A Secret Santa was held and everyone has been in great spirits, looking forward to a winter break; and to celebrate in some normality.
We wish all of our clients and readers a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year. Let’s bring on 2022 with all pistons firing!
They say that working in Compliance can be quite harsh. Our Compliance Manager Jason wanted to set the record straight, and show that Compliance has a soft side.
The Mosaic Day Centre in Tunbridge Wells recently opened their doors to their newly renovated premises, which is operated by the Tunbridge Wells Churches Street Teams. The centre provides lots of different support, services, and advice to local residents in need. One of the services that this fantastic location runs is a daily soup bowl. This is a way to offer food and drink as well as a friendly place to rest and meet other people in similar situations.
Mosaic also offers assistance with pre-employment support, such as CV and debt advice. Housing support is also provided by the Centre for those who need it. Within the centre, there is a great amount of amenities. For instance, there is a washing machine and dryer, shower room and clothing available. Temporary shelter provisions are also available if the need arises. The Team have also linked up with a local children’s charity to provide rooms for courses. Areas for counselling are also available.
If you would like to know more then please visit www.twstreetteams.org. Better still, have a look for local soup bowls in your area, volunteers are in great demand this time of year and it truly is a welcomed offering.
At Wilson & Scott, we constantly aim to support local charities and we have a volunteer day initiative to help support this. This year, in the spirit of Christmas, our Health & Safety Manager Dylan Thompson Elf & Safety Manager for the day. Dylan volunteered to assist the James Hopkins Trust with their Santa’s Grotto and Breakfast in Newent.
As one of Santa’s Elves, this is what Dylan’s day looked like:
“Santa’s Elves were first tasked with looking after the families as they arrived. We then guided the families to the breakfast with Santa and, after breakfast, there was a meet and greet. Afterwards, the Grotto opened for the day. I met the families as they came into the grotto, guiding them to Santa’s room, and supported the charity at their sales desk. The Trust were selling Christmas themed items and all the money was to fundraise to support the charity.”
The James Hopkins Trust provides vital care, respite, and family support for life limited, and life threatened young children. All of us here at Wilson & Scott would like to wish a very Merry and restful Christmas to all the staff and volunteers who work tirelessly to help the lives of others, at the Trust and across the country; we hope that our Elf & Safety Manager brightened the day of those who came along!
Be sure to check your vehicle’s functions. Check your tyre tread and depth, ensure your tyres are properly inflated; make sure that you have enough oil and fluids in your engine (especially antifreeze!); check the correct function of wipers and lights and make sure that any luggage that you’re carrying is securely fastened down.
In severe levels of winter weather, it is a good practice to check the roads before you travel. National Highways (previously Highways England) provides to-the-minute traffic reports on the Strategic Road Network across the country. You can also use apps like BBC Weather for alerts and weather warnings in your area. The worst thing is being caught off-guard in a snow storm!
Once on the road, be sure to keep an eye on any changing conditions; this is most important on longer journeys when different parts of the country could be experiencing multiple weather fronts.
Stopping distances are doubled in the rain and 10x greater in ice.
With that in mind, it is mindful to leave extra space between other road users.
Skidding and aquaplaning can also cause issues in bad weather. To prevent this, make sure you brake and accelerate gently and, if you do start to skid:
Stop braking and accelerating, as the tyres find grip carefully steer the car into the direction of the skid. For example, if the rear of the car skids to the left, steer quickly and smoothly to the left.
(This deals with a front wheel skid, mostly caused by going round corners on slippery roads too fast or braking heavily in corners).
Hopefully these few tips will serve you well over winter, and remember, if driving conditions are extremely bad or you’re unsure about being on the road, it’s better to stay at home.
Friday 3/12 marks Purple Space’s Purple Light up, raising awareness and celebrating disability in the workplace.
“#PurpleLightUp is a global movement that celebrates and draws attention to the economic contribution of the 386 million disabled employees around the world. Since 2017, #PurpleLightUp has been driving momentum for disability inclusion across hundreds of organisations, reaching thousands of employees in different ways.”
At Wilson and Scott, we work shoulder to shoulder with people from all walks of life. We recognise the contributions that disabled people have made, and continue to make, throughout our industry, and how important inclusion is in the workplace.
To celebrate #PurpleLightUp, we are pleased to share an excerpt of an article that Yvette De Souza, whom we recently wrote an article about, has written:
I have a new ‘friend’ who is with me 24/7. No matter what I do I cannot get rid of her.
She’s there with me constantly; keeping me company.
She is silent. Invisible to the naked eye.
No, she is not a figment of my imagination. No, she is not a ghost.
Nobody can see her, including me; but she is there with me. She is in my head…..literally.
I have a new ‘friend’.
I have named my new ‘friend’ Glenis – Glenis the Glioma.
The brain tumour that I was diagnosed with in February 2020 – Date of birth unknown.
‘The size of a tennis ball’, the consultant said, referring to Glenis.
But how? I replied.
I had no symptoms. No pain. No headaches.
How did this tennis ball bury itself inside my head?
My life was derailed in a matter of seconds.
I have a new ‘friend’; a ‘friend’ I do not want.
‘It has to come out’, they said.
‘We have to cut open your skull’, they said.
But why? I’m not in pain.
‘We have to’, they said. ‘For your sake, Glenis has to go’, they said.
You have a new ‘friend’, they said.
Fast forward to the present day; treatment over.
Time to proceed with my new life – version 2.0 as my oncologist likes to call it.
On the outside, I look, walk, act, and talk like I used to; but on the inside my invisible ‘friend’ has had an impact.
I battle with different ailments daily; no one day is the same.
I do not let that stop me from moving on with my altered life.
I have a new ‘friend’, I will not let her win.
My memory, my confidence, my concentration, and vocabulary have all been impacted by my new ‘friend’.
I am determined not to let her define me; I am more than Glenis.
Every day I fight to overcome Glenis; every day I become that little bit stronger.
I may not be able to do the exact same things I used to, but I will give everything a try at least once.
My new ‘friend’ will always be with me; even though she wants to do
Wilson and Scott have had the great honour of appearing in an episode of Grace’s Amazing Machines on the BBC CBeebies channel (Sky 608, Virginia Media 702).
We showed Grace how our line marking machines work, with a focus on one of our Multi Marks, and how we keep the country moving! Be sure to tune in to learn more about the work we do, the episode is live on TV and the BBC iPlayer.
S3, E17 and E20
Apprenticeships are one of the schemes at the heart of Wilson & Scott’s operation. Learning line marking requires a very much hands-on approach, and the opportunities we have for young people joining the workforce is at the forefront of the industry.
I caught up with our most recent apprentice, Ethan Wheatley, to see how he was getting on while preparing for his final training towards his NVQ. Ethan has been with Wilson & Scott for just over a year, coming straight out of school, and following his dad (our Senior Operations Manager) Lee into the trade.
We spoke for a little while before Ethan started his first job of the day, which was to line the end of a cycle lane. I could tell from his enthusiasm that Ethan really enjoys the work and skills he has learnt. He spoke highly of his mentor Steve, who pushes him to achieve the very best in his work as well as teaching him ways of working that have endured the test of time as being the correct, and most efficient, processes which deliver the high-quality results we are known for.
Furthermore, Ethan stated that he found the lining he has been doing very rewarding, as he can see the positive impact the finished lines have on road users as well as being a satisfying job to undertake.
I wish Ethan all the best with achieving his qualifications and am certain that with his determination and right attitude, he will work his way through our company with pride.