I have over 40 years’ experience in production and Manufacturing having first started out as an apprentice with Fenners at Marfleet in Hull and obtaining ONC and HNC in Electrical and Electronic Engineering.

I was fortunate to have the opportunity, to experience and work in many of the different divisions and locations of the group, enabling me to have an excellent grounding in not only my own trade but from shop floor to higher management and customer facing teams.

The last year of my apprenticeship was spent at Fenamec in Hull which was the Conveyor, Automation and Controls Division of the Group supplying conveyor systems to airports and many of the blue chip companies around the UK and the world. I spent the next nine years there, first as a Controls Engineer then as  Senior Controls Engineer. The role was varied and consisted of preparing and presenting quotations, to designing, building programming and commissioning systems. It  gave me the opportunity to travel extensively and to meet and work alongside different people something I have always enjoyed doing.

Whilst at Fenamec, an exciting opportunity came to work for Knauf, a German Family owned, Plasterboard manufacturer, who had recently entered the UK and where developing a Greenfield site in Immingham. The role was as Chief Electrical Engineer and together with the new Chief Mechanical Engineer and the new Production Manager, none of whom had any experience of making plasterboard, interviewed, recruited and started up this brand new facility.

Over the 29 Years I worked there I moved into the Chief Engineer role responsible for all maintenance activities and Projects. Then moving into Project Manager, responsible for all new projects in the UK, spearheading capital projects from start to finish, the largest of which was a 30 million pound extension to the Immingham line which at the time made it the longest and  fastest plasterboard  line in Europe.

From 2009 I was appointed as Production Director leading the Immingham site and being part of the UK SLT. Delivering strategic leadership to a team of 150 employees, managing all H&S and compliance matters to ensure health and safety was top of every Agenda. During this time I undertook a Green Belt in Lean Six Sigma and Introduced and implemented Lean Methodologies and Continuous Improvement techniques from the Senior team down through the organisation. Always building and promoting a positive culture to drive improvement and savings, through planning and delivery of change management, always encouraging them to achieve and exceed set goals.

I have always promoted and advocated that people are the greatest asset any organisation has. When things go wrong it is very rarely the people who are at fault, it is more often that the process was not right or not explained correctly or in sufficient detail to be understood. I have been fortunate to work in great Organisations who have allowed me to further my education in leadership and people skills which has greatly helped me in my working and also personal life.

The role did mean I had to spend a lot of time away from home, both in the UK and abroad, which I did thoroughly enjoy as I had the opportunity to meet and also make lifelong friends with people from many different backgrounds and cultures. However the time had come where I decided that I wanted to spend more time at home with my wife and family, I have three grown up children and two Grandchildren and a Dog (Golden Retriever)

I therefore took a year out of work although I did perform consultancy work for research providers connecting clients with industry professionals, which were looking into new and unfamiliar markets.

Then I saw this job on LinkedIn through a post James Mackintosh had put up and thought that Job is for me, my Wife agreed which always helps, and well here I am. I must say that although we are in strange times at present everybody has been really good and made me more than welcome and I have really enjoyed settling in and meeting up with everybody.


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