Bracken Hill pupils find out what it takes to keep Britain ‘on the move’

Bracken Hill staff and pupils on their visit to Aspin in Huthwaite
Bracken Hill staff and pupils on their visit to Aspin in Huthwaite

Pupils from Kirkby-in-Ashfield’s Bracken Hill School had a taste of ‘engineering in action’ on a visit to the Huthwaite offices of Aspin, a UK leader in engineering services for rail, highways and infrastructure.

As part of a school project on the importance of health and safety in the workplace, 35 students from the area special school and their teachers visited the Aspin site at Nunn Brook Road to find out what it takes to help keep Britain ‘on the move’ with safety as a priority.

The pupils met some of the Aspin team responsible for safety at work, dressed in high visibility safety clothes and vests and took part in fun quizzes and activities.

They were also treated to a live demonstration and a close-up view of one of the large on track plant (road to rail RRV) from Aspin’s fleet.

It was operated by Mark Hardware, a local Aspin POS manager, who is responsible for ensuring all Aspin plant is correctly certified and safe to use on the rail network.

Paul Hughes, Aspin’s Group Head of Health, Safety, Environment and Quality (HSEQ) organised the visit following an approach from the local school’s advisor from the Work Services Directorate for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

Mr Hughes said: “Safety is hugely important in engineering and the work that we do.

“It’s our number one priority as an employer because our teams often work in very challenging rail and highways environments.

“Education and awareness play a critical part of minimising risks, so we were delighted to be able to collaborate with the school and engage with the possible engineers of the future to help them understand what’s involved.

Angela Reed, a Mansfield-based DWP schools advisor co-ordinated the visit with Bracken Hill School.

She added: “I just wanted to say a huge thank you to you and all at Aspin for the visit.

“The children had a super time and the health and safety aspect will be perfect for them to write about for their ASDAN ‘Raising Aspirations’ qualification.”

Aspin employs more than 230 people from its offices across the UK, with its head office in Hemel Hempstead.

The company specialises in providing high quality geotechnical, civil, foundation and structural engineering services for the rail, highways and infrastructure sectors across the UK on all sizes and durations of projects – all backed by the fleet of Aspin-owned plant and equipment

The company provides engineering services for organisations including Network Rail, Highways England and major infrastructure contractors such as Amey, Morgan Sindall and Balfour Beatty.