Lifetime Achievement Award for long-serving A-Plant employee

A-PLANT has paid tribute to one employee who has chalked up 50 years service with the hire specialist.

Fitter Brian Symcox (72) was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award earlier this year after working for the business for five decades at A-Plant’s depot in Derby.

The celebrations coincide with another major milestone, as A-Plant transitions to officially become Sunbelt Rentals from June 1st 2020.

When Brian started working as an apprentice in 1970 he was paid ‘Five Bob’ a week – the equivalent of 25 pence. He progressed from being a depot-based fitter to becoming a mobile, on-site fitter responsible for managing the maintenance of equipment including dumpers, excavators and rollers.

In the last few years, he returned to the main depot and supports the training of young apprentices, teaching them the basics of maintenance and repairs.

Brian said, “In the 1970s there was no electric machinery, it was all wind-up machinery. This progressed to battery and now it’s key-coded start-up. Machinery is now a lot easier to use, as technology has advanced there is more flexibility.”

Known to his colleagues as Tommy-Brian, he originally began working for a company called Keyplant, which was acquired by the Ashtead Group in 1987.

Last year he reduced his hours to three days a week. Brian added, “I am really pleased to be celebrating 50 years and I will just carry on and keep going while I’m fit and well. I have no plans for retirement just yet and am not sure what I might do when I have to retire.

“It’s great to see A-Plant striving to be better. I’m looking forward to getting my new uniform when we become Sunbelt Rentals.”

Service centre manager Chris Hanley added, “We are delighted to join Brian in celebrating his 50 years with A-Plant, it is a truly commendable achievement. Brian has a wealth of knowledge and experience to share and he’s a good teacher. The apprentices really appreciate and value his skills and experience and over the years he must have mentored quite a few apprentices.”

Brian is married with one daughter and three grandchildren.