Stuart Harris - November update

From low lying sun to snow blizzards, from fireworks to Christmas trees, wow what a change in just one month! These are just a few of my recollections as I made my visits to meet more passionate hirers in and around the fabulous landscape of the Yorkshire Dales and the ceremonial county of East Riding which borders the North Sea coast. The winding rolling roads which I spent most time driving on covering 1,141 miles were also a pleasant change from the stop start grind of the M6 here in the North West and the M60 around Manchester, which now seems to be the norm!

During my November visits I received a warm welcome from many Hirers who clearly enjoy their job providing great support to their customers and are an asset to our industry.

Early one morning I met with Andrew Rhodes the proprietor of Rhodes Plant Services. Andrew offers a bespoke service utilising his wealth of experience acquired over many years, and maintains his equipment with a passion, as can be seen by the high standard of machine maintenance and presentation. It has been some years since Andrew last visited the Show but having updated him on the still growing exhibitor list he agreed that it could be too good an opportunity to miss and he will be giving it his further consideration to visit in 2018.

The coastal towns of Bridlington and Scarborough are home ground to Andy Hire where I met Brad Davidson and Andy Symonds. Both depots offer a great local service and have enjoyed considerable growth over recent times and with this in mind Brad is hopeful of once again visiting the show.

I also made visits in Pickering, Driffield, Easingwold and then onto the market town of Thirsk at the most northern tip of my area where Power Point (Northern) Ltd operate from within their vast unit, and which offers one of the biggest showrooms I visit on my region. Here I met with Alan Cook a real dynamo of a character who often phones me at either sunrise or sunset ! Alan truly is non stop in the depot, and due to this he is going to take some more convincing to make his first visit. However I am so convinced that Alan would find his visit to be most rewarding that I feel duty bound to pursue him further, so he is still work in progress!

A visit further south and into the town of Rippon where I received a warm and enthusiastic welcome from Sam Fessey, a young Depot Manager of SHC Hire Centres, Rippon Depot, one of 4 depots across North Yorkshire. During my time here Sam served some customers on the phone and he is a real credit to his company for the care and commercial awareness he applied when responding to the enquiries. We spoke about the Show and Sam is very keen to visit, but he expects to be manning the depot, as Neil Bravery MD, who is based at the Skipton Depot makes his annual visit to the Show. I suggested he lets Neil know of his desire to visit the Show as part of his development program, while Neil takes advantage of the Show Only Deals. I look forward to welcoming Neil and his team once again to the Show and our stand.

Next and to the east, is the Cathedral City of York where we find Chippindale Plant a family firm established in 1949 and now run by Peter and Nigel Chippindale. They operate from their Head Office in Leeds and employ approx 120 people. They have 8 depots across Yorkshire with a further Depot over the Pennines in Stockport. They have established a reputation for quality and customer care which is driven by a real passion for hire. We once again look forward to members of their team visiting Februarys Show. While in York I also met with Les Smith of LSE Tool Hire a knowledgeable man of many talents and a great character. Les last visited the show in 2015 but is now making plans to return once again in 2018. I will also be making a return to this historical city in December as there are a few more companies here which I still have on my radar for the Show Diary.

Further afield to Boroughbridge it was snowing when I met with Richard Ogden of Yorkshire Generators who made a very welcome mug of Yorkshires finest, Tea! (when in Yorkshire what else would it be!). Here Richard is Commercial Director of this specialist power provider offering Generator Hire, Sales and Installation to many sectors of industry across Yorkshire. Richard has been visiting the Show for a number of years where he is welcomed by many of his regular and valued suppliers as he seeks out show offers, and the opportunity to appraise new models and potential new suppliers. I now look forward to the opportunity to repay Richard for his hospitality by providing our hospitality at the show and some of Buxtons finest! (I’ll leave it for you to draw your own conclusion on that one!)

Onwards again and to the outskirts of York where I visited Beaver Plant, another specialist company who currently focus on Hire & Sales to the Arboricultural industry. Here I entered into their well-stocked showroom where I was greeted with a warm welcome from Sean Powdrell who was pleased to share his considerable knowledge about the equipment and services they supply, to I suspect a loyal band of appreciative customers. Prior to my visit Sean knew little of the Show, but along with Alan Oldfield their MD ,as they evaluate and shape their business for the future they are now aiming to make their 1st visit in February. I look forward to welcoming them to the Show and the Altrad Belle stand, where like many of the exhibitors it would be my pleasure to introduce them to new and innovative products.

May I also take this opportunity to say thank you to all those I have visited on my travels, and to all my regular customers for their continued support throughout 2017.

Best wishes for Christmas and a prosperous 2018.
Thanks again