IRTE Skills Challenge crowns its winners and closes fantastic year

Coach and bus industry comes together to celebrate the top engineers in the business

The winners of this year’s IRTE Skills Challenge were announced at its annual awards ceremony held in Coventry last Thursday (18 July).

Mick Sweetmore, SOE President hosted the awards and highlighted how far the competition has come and grown over the last few years. Other speakers included Nick Mallinson, WMG/University of Warwick; Sir John Parker, SOE Patron; Bill Hiron, Chairman of ALBUM; Richard Hennessy, Director of Operations (South) DVSA, who gave a tribute to DVSA’s Andy Cook; and Richard Harrington from Go-Ahead London who introduced the Philip Margrave award.

Society of Operations Engineers CEO Bruce McGill says: “It’s been a fantastic year for the Skills Challenge. We have taken another giant leap forward in terms of the profile of the competition and we are proud to positively influence the bus and coach sector by showcasing the skills of the technicians.”

This year’s Challenge welcomed 23 teams from 12 operators, including two coach firms. Challenges included nine mechanical tests including brakes, transmission, tyres, component measuring and lubricants.

“Now this year’s competition is finished we shall start work on increasing participation for next year,” Mr McGill adds.

The IRTE Skills Challenge will return next year, where it will be celebrating its 10th year in celebrating the success of engineers in the industry.

The full list of winners will be announced in next week’s issue of routeone.