People around the world have recently been celebrating the historic events of July 1969, when man first stepped on the moon. For Dave Williams, contract lift manager at Ainscough Crane Hire’s Bristol depot, the month also marked a much more personal anniversary.
That month, aged just 15, Dave began his career working for crane company Grayston White & Sparrow.
“I was fifteen years old and began as a trainee crane driver,” says Dave. “We didn’t have telescopic cranes and all the jib sections had to be put together piece by piece – it was a lot different than the technology we have now. I began working on a lot of precast concrete buildings, and immediately knew this could be a career I could be very happy in.”
Grayston, White & Sparrow was long acknowledged as one of the leading crane companies in the industry. It was bought in 2000 by Ainscough Crane Hire, in a move that proved crucial for Ainscough’s development into the UK’s leading crane hire company.
Dave said: “On their day, Sparrows were the leading crane company in the country, and that’s where Ainscough are today. It really is the best of the bunch. The approach to safety is second to none, and there is always support for members for staff if they need it. It’s a wonderful place to work.”
Dave currently undertakes a large portion of his work on infrastructure projects overseen by organisations such as Network Rail, Highways England and the National Grid.
“Even after all this time I still really enjoy the work I do,” continues Dave. “Being a contract lift manager gives you a lot of freedom to work in different places and environments. I’ve formed great relationships with a lot of our clients and it makes you feel proud work with your team to deliver a great service.
Dave’s 50th anniversary was recently marked by a celebration with his colleagues where he was presented with a certificate marking his service to both Ainscough and the wider crane industry.
Dave plans to cut down his workload in March next year, when he will begin to work three days a week:
“After a fifty year career I think it would be too much of a culture shock to suddenly give up working all together, so I’m going to reduce my workload and see what happens next. My wife retires in three years and then we’ll enjoy our retirement together. I love fishing and am a motorcycle enthusiast, so keeping busy won’t be a problem!”
Matt Jarman, Bristol depot manager, said: “It was a privilege for us to present Dave with a certificate to mark his 50 years of service to Ainscough and the crane industry. That he has managed to sustain a career in a competitive and complex industry reflects the knowledge, diligence and dedication he brings to every job he works on. I’d like to offer congratulations from everyone at Ainscough for reaching this landmark – we are very proud to have him on our team.”