East Riding of Yorkshire Council has invested in Toro for the first time as a full mowers replacement programme gets underway
In a substantial £470,000 deal with Toro distributor Lely UK and Toro dealer the Russell Group, the local authority has taken delivery of 18 new Toro machines; 12 Toro LT3340s, a heavy-duty triple cylinder mower, and six Toro Groundsmaster 3400 high performance rotary mowers.
The delivery marks the start of a four-year supply agreement, during which the Council will take on an additional 12 machines, making 30 in total.
Andy Height, service manager for waste, streets and grounds at the Council, explains why the grounds team decided to replace their fleet with 100 percent Toro machines.
"We recently underwent a comprehensive review of grass cutting across the entire authority. Every two weeks, the grounds team cuts the equivalent of 919 professional football pitches. At 6.9 million square metres of grass, that is one of the largest areas of land tended to by any council in the UK," he says.
In search of a better quality machine, the Council went out to tender and tested out a number of mowers. The evaluation process saw eight staff members - five charge hands and three grounds operatives - get involved in trialling the various machines.
"We went through a rigorous procurement exercise before purchasing Toro mowers. We have 124 grounds staff, with 54 of those being seasonal here at the Council, and it was very important to have a selection of those involved in choosing which new machines to take on board. They're the ones out there using them every day, so it's vital they're happy with the choice," Andy explains.
Prior to this deal, Andy says that the Council had a couple of Toro machines out on hire throughout the summer last year, and received excellent feedback from staff using them.
Along with high quality and positive staff feedback, Andy adds that financial savings were equally important in the decision-making process. With local authorities facing increasing pressure to save money and increase efficiency, investment in good machinery is imperative for future plans.
"Since using Toro, the information we've received from the fleet shows average fuel savings of 12-15 percent, which is fantastic. On top of that, we're also expecting to experience big savings on the maintenance and repairs side.
"With this type of work, it's vital that breakages are kept to a minimum and that we can get things repaired quickly. Toro's reputation for reliability and after sales care is great and another key reason for choosing them," he explains.
For councils such as East Riding, the GM3400 and LT3340 are the ideal workhorses needed to maintain the quality of green spaces in the most productive, cost effective way.
Engineered to provide an outstanding, long-term and reliable solution to out-front mowing, the GM3400 is a practical and sustainable investment, while the high quality design and robust heavy duty construction of the LT3340 means it's able to meet the most demanding of environments. From light trimming to mowing dense, overgrown areas, the LT3340 can be tailored to suit any mowing application.
The 18 Toro mowers have already been put to work on East Yorkshire's vast urban and rural grassy areas - something that's not gone unnoticed by the public, says Andy.
"If the grass isn't cut to a good standard, people notice, and we've already had compliments from the public since using the Toros. Combined with fuel savings and great feedback from staff, in all, we're very happy with our new fleet," he adds.
For more information, visit www.toro.com.