Winning their first overseas contracts gave North Staffs Irrigation reason to celebrate this month, but once on site they made an unwelcome discovery - in the form of an unexploded bomb!
Installation Engineer Andrew Potts had begun trenching at Les Pins Golf Course at Hardelot in Northern France when he came across a piece of metal at a depth of around two feet. Having made several attempts to dislodge it with his spade, he took a closer look and found himself staring at a 6lb unexploded mortar.
The alarm was raised and the course cleared while bomb disposal experts checked the device and removed it for safe disposal elsewhere.
Work on the mains pipe work at the course was resumed and the staff have now begun work on the 36 hole course at neighbouring Le Touquet where the company will be adding new mains pipe work and sprinklers to the tees, greens and fairways on the newly constructed 15th and 16th holes at 'Le Mer' and 'Le Foret' courses.
The Installation Engineers overseen by UK & European Service Manager John Kukla, have been joined on site by the latest addition to North Staffs fleet of machinery, a Ditch Witch 8020. The 80-horse power mole plough and trencher combo unit, which will remain overseas to fulfil other European contracts, is typical of the company's policy to invest in equipment rather than hiring. Working nationally across the UK and now on the continent, they prefer to have specialist equipment available to move to any location at short notice.
Several members of staff including company director Andrew Hinchliffe will receive the specific training needed to operate and maintain the machine.
With interchangeable hydrostatic attachments, the 8020 is extremely versatile. It enables the operator to complete specialised tasks just by switching attachments. The standard work modules include a trencher, vibratoryplough and a bulldozer blade.
For further information please contact Ellie Tait on 07870 164496 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.