Model gift for retiring MAN manager Tom

Tom Richards (pictured right) was presented with a model truck to mark his retirement from MAN after 27 years of service.

The Network Operations Manager from Middlewich, Cheshire, served the company since 1988, although before 2000 he was an ERF employee.

In his time with the firm the 65-year-old worked in various roles, including Warranty Manager and Internal Auditor.

Richards, who has been married for 37 years and has three children and three grandchildren, was given a specially-made model as part of his retirement presentation.

He added: “The model is of an MAN Euro-6 tractor unit with a low loader trailer that carried two ERF trucks.

“It was built by Peter Jones of MAN and a lot of thought has gone into it, one of the ERF trucks was in A&J Nelson livery.
“I worked quite a bit of my life in Scotland and A & J Nelson is an operator based there.

“The other model is a BP truck which was synonymous with the ERF brand and represents my time in England.
“I am really chuffed, it is a real compliment, I cannot thank everyone enough.”

Andy Turner, Head of UK Network Development at MAN (pictured left) said: “Myself, his network colleagues, MAN UK and MAN dealer staff wish him all the best for his retirement.”

Petition calling for Operation Stack to be scrapped passes 10,000 mark

More than ten thousand businesses and residents in Kent have signed a petition calling on the government to scrap Operation Stack.

Despite being set up just a week ago, the online petition urging the prime minister “to abandon Operation Stack” had swiftly attracted a weight of signatures.

And as the use of the emergency parking procedure on the M20 entered its third week (being stood down yesterday, 19 July), Castledene Transport said it was in the process of getting all its drivers to sign it.

Matt Clarke, transport manager at the Aylesford-based firm said an alternative solution would not be difficult to create: “You can’t build a lorry park for three and a half thousand lorries, no-one is expecting that.

"But you can for 500 trucks and then have a contraflow system.”

Clarke also warned that despite all the traffic chaos witnessed in the county recently, the problem could still get swept under the carpet.

“As soon as the Calais problem is sorted, or whatever problem causes Operation Stack, it will all get forgotten about. I am trying to keep it fresh in people’s minds. If it gets forgotten for two or three months it will all go away,” he said of the procedure that has already cost Kent hauliers dearly.

Chrys Rampley, RHA crime and infrastructure manager, said new lorry parks would still need to be managed and co-ordinated, but she added: “Ultimately, the issue is we shouldn’t have to have something like Operation Stack.

"We need to make sure the free movement of vehicles is allowed and put an end to a minority of people who are holding the country to ransom.”

Earlier this year it was suggested that travel chaos caused by Operation Stack - following a fire in the Channel Tunnel - was a huge opportunity to highlight and finally address the issue.

Image: Press Association