New Lanes team delivers on drainage service for East Anglia

A new leadership team at Lanes Group plc’s East Anglian depot is combining fresh outlooks and established operational experience to impress customers and win major new contracts.

The new depot manager at the St Neots depot, Karen Darrington, joined Lanes in February 2021 and is leading a team of committed drainage professionals, determined to deliver excellent service.

The depot’s area development manager, Rachel Frankland, joined Lanes in January 2021 and has already had significant success in winning new business.

Completing the management team is Cristian Avram, appointed as operational manager in June 2021, after proving his ability as a senior jet vac tanker engineer at the depot over four years.

Lanes St Neots in numbers

The Lanes St Neots depot operates 3 jet vac tankers, one of them a recycler jet vac tanker, 2 CCTV drainage survey units, and 4 van pack units, which have both CCTV survey and jetting capability for reactive blockage clearing work.

Pictured, from the left: Operations Manager Cristian Avram, Administrator Diane Bond, Administrator Stacey Mann, Drainage Engineer Jamie Holland, Depot Manager Karen Darrington, Jet Vac Engineer Andrew Heath, Area Development Manager Rachel Frankland, Drainage Engineer Adam Hale, Jet Vac Assistant Gary Brown, and Drainage Engineer Gunther Skoberla.

Building drainage success

Karen has many years’ experience working in depot management in the building merchant sector. She is pleased with how everyone at the depot has pulled together since the start of the year.

She said: “If I had three words for our depot, I would say ‘strong’, ‘close-knit’ and ‘team’.

“It’s not been easy. We’ve been working through the COVID-19 pandemic while, at the same time, developing our approach to service delivery. But everyone is contributing and making a real difference.

“We all have a clear idea of the great potential we have to make St Neots one of Lanes’ strongest performing depots.”

Rachel had worked for 10 years for her family’s water utilities tankering business and was delighted to get the opportunity to join Lanes.

She explained: “I was looking out for adverts from Lanes and when this job came up I applied within minutes of it being posted. I wanted to work for the UK’s biggest independent drainage company and it hasn’t disappointed.

“Every day is different. There are great challenges. But the team here is great fun to work with and we’re 100% focused on looking after our customers and winning the trust of new ones.”

Solving problems

Cristian is applying his experience in service delivery across the region to support field teams in carrying out their work.

He said: “Drainage work is all about commitment to solve problems for customers. We’ve got a good mix of very experienced drainage engineers and new recruits who are keen to progress and do well.”

Senior administrator Stacey Mann joined in December 2020. She had worked for a soft play and bouncy castle hire company for five years but had been placed on furlough due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Her colleague, Diane Bond, joined in June 2021. She had worked at the Magistrates Court for 14 years and is now a dedicated member of the Lanes St Neots team.

The team to rely on

Karen said: “We’re now working as one big team. Our customers rely on Lanes to overcome all sorts of problems, from the biggest drainage challenges imaginable to carrying out fast drain unblocking, and we’re working together to do just that.”

Lanes St Neots delivers drainage services across Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Norfolk, and Suffolk, in towns and cities that include Norwich, Ipswich, Kings Lynn, Thetford, Peterborough, Bury St Edmunds, Bedford, Huntingdon and Cambridge.

Its services include CCTV drainage surveying, drain and sewer unblocking, pipe lining and patch lining, sewer desilting, and pipe excavation and replacement.

As part of Lanes Group, it can always draw on other specialist services and sewer surveying, cleaning and rehabilitation assets not available to smaller, local drainage contractors.

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