SELECT awards ceremony honours unsung electrical heroes

(from left) Neil MacEachern, award sponsor Schneider Electric; Lifetime Achievement winner David Smith and Shereen Nanjiani, who hosted the event

Electrical professionals from companies across Scotland had their moment in the spotlight last week at a ceremony hosted by Scotland’s largest trade association SELECT.

The unsung heroes gathered in Glasgow to submit themselves to the critical judgement of their peers.

The accolades awarded by SELECT, the campaigning body for the electrotechnical trade in Scotland, had a special relevance in 2018, a year in which sector’s campaign for recognition of qualified electricians gained real traction.

And they reflected not only the vital role of electricians in today’s interconnected world but also the verve and flair which SELECT member companies bring to activities such as marketing, safety, training and a host of other aspects of the sector.

This year also saw new award categories, including Best Medium and Best Large Contractor.

(from left) Gary Mason, Edmundson Electrical; Apprentice of the Year winner Blair Hendry; Jock Simpson, Scottish Joint Industry Board and Shereen Nanjiani

Darrell Matthews, SELECT’s MD, said: “This has been an extraordinary period of activity for the sector, in which the Scottish government has been investigating the benefits of protection of title for electrical professionals.

“SELECT has also established a dedicated Training Department which will take its training and skills offering to a new level.

“The entries for the awards this year were in tune with the new levels of excitement in the electrical industry, which we feel is entering a transformational period backed by forward-thinking, innovative companies and individuals.”

As an example of the growth the sector has experienced, the new Best Large Contractor award went to Edinburgh-based M-PACT Building Services Ltd – a company which only a few years ago had won an award as Best Small Contractor.

Darrell Matthews said: “M-PACT is an outstanding example of the larger firms in the SELECT member portfolio who not only create jobs and opportunities but which also display a vision and ambition which means that, for them, the sky’s the limit.”

(from left) John Henry, MD of EDA Apprenticeships Plus; Wholesaler Apprentice of the Year winner Stephanie Thomson; Alan Dunnet, chair of Holland House and Shereen Nanjiani

Other awards were:

  • Apprentice of the Year, won by Blair Hendry, who works with Fife Council.
  • Wholesaler Apprentice of the Year, a category introduced just last year, won by Stephanie Thomson, who works with Stearn in Glasgow.
  • Best Small Contractor, won by Newton Stewart electrical company ATD Electrical Services.
  • Best Medium Contractor, won by Kenneth Ferguson Electrical Contractor from Connel, a small village on Scotland’s West Coast.
  • Best New Product, won by Worcestershire-based ESP, for its smart security system.
  • Best Delivery of Customer Service, won by Invincible Fire and Security of Ardrossan.
  • Best Visual Promotion, won by Servest Arthur McKay, from Loanhead, near Edinburgh.
  • Best Electrical Safety Product, won by Annan firm Select Electrical and Mechanical Services.

A Lifetime Achievement Award, sponsored by Schneider Electric, was made to David Smith, Past President of SELECT, a current Central Board Member and one of the outstanding figures in the Scottish electrical industry.

Mr Matthews said: “David has taken a keen interest in the sector but is perhaps most associated with training and the development of skills, having played a major role in a number of Scottish and UK organisations over the years.

“He carries out his work in a professional and diligent manner, never forgetting the part that employers play in developing the skills and talents of the workforce.”

The evening was hosted by Shereen Nanjiani, one of Scotland’s most popular radio and television personalities.


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