Utility Week

UTILITY Week 26th June 2015

Utility Week - authoritative, impartial and essential reading for senior people within utilities, regulators and government

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28 | 26TH JUNE - 2ND JULY 2015 | UTILITY WEEK Utility Week Stars Awards Manchester, 12 June 2015 Community We are all made of Stars At the Utility Week Stars Awards, frontline staff were centre stage, says Lucinda Dann. W hen the lights go out and the water stops, it may be the people at the top who do the talking, but it's peo- ple on the front line who are out in the field, or scurrying around the back office dealing with complaints, fixing problems, and quietly limiting the damage. It's the same people who uphold the world-renowned reliability of the UK's utilities infrastruc- ture on a day-to-day basis. These unsung heroes gath- ered on a balmy aernoon in Manchester at the Lancashire County Cricket Club on 12 June to celebrate with fellow lights of the utilities industry. The Utility Week Stars Awards, back for its second year, gave recognition to those who work so tirelessly to support customers and deliver value in a variety of ways. The host for the event, come- dienne Lucy Porter, admitted her own, not unusual, ignorance of the workings of utilities in her opening monologue – "I have been fascinated by utilities for all of two hours" – but she also recognised, "you do a far more important job than I do". Those important jobs include customer service and health and safety, both recognised on the day. But there are also those who go above and beyond the call of duty. Gareth Davies of SP Energy networks was recognised for his individual and tireless work to restore water and power to an elderly woman who had been cut off for two years and ensure she would be cared for by the social services following a personal tragedy that saw her become isolated from society. Meanwhile, Ray Morris, who has dedicated a staggering 50 years to the electricity indus- try and still works to develop young apprentices to take on the mantle of responsibility in the future, was awarded the Long Service Award. All our shortlisted candidates were worthy, but our expert judging panel had to pick the few who shone brightest. We hope all those who won or were nominated enjoyed their time in the spotlight. It was a moment to thank all those in the water and energy industries who work day and night to make a difference to people's lives. Utility Week sends out heartfelt congratula- tions to all whose who took part. "This was my first time judging an event of this nature and I can honestly say that when judges say they have a hard time, it's true. The quality of entries was outstanding. The lengths that people working in this sector go to is incredible. "To us, it's tempting to think of a loss of utility as a something we have to fix or report to the regulator but often to those in the homes affected it really can turn their lives upside down. The stories of those nominated for this year's Stars Awards bring home how much I enjoy working in this sector." Dr Jim Marshall, Water UK "The Utility Week Stars Awards are a fantas- tic showcase for the very best of the utilities sector and the people who demonstrate tremendous dedication to their work. It was an honour to judge the awards and learn more about the individuals and the teams that are making such an important contribution to our sector. All of those nominated can be extremely proud, and I would like to especially con- gratulate the winners on their success." Paul Fidler, ENA "I feel very honoured to be asked but I always find judging awards a challenge – there is such a lot of ability and energy out there. If I could give everyone a prize, I would. It is very important for the industry to take part by entering and judging as it helps demonstrate the breadth of what the energy industry does, the talent on show and it encourages other people to step up and do their best." Lawrence Slade Energy UK What the judges said

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