Paul Simonds of G4S Cash Solutions has been crowned Logistics UK’s Van Driver of the Year 2022 following a competition day held at Farnborough International Exhibition and Conference Centre.
Simonds fought off tough competition from 10 other finalists, also winning Van Excellence Driver of the Year 2022 and three individual tasks.
Kevin Green, marketing and communications director at Logistics UK, said: “Van drivers are the lifeblood of the UK’s economy, continuously servicing the needs of the nation via the delivery of goods and essential services. It is vital that as an industry we recognise and celebrate these unsung heroes, and these awards are the perfect opportunity to do just that.
“The role of a van driver requires a multitude of skills; drivers often have to navigate changing road spaces and time pressures while ensuring they demonstrate safe and efficient driving at all times.”
Drivers faced a series of challenges as part competition which were designed to replicate some of the skills needed in industry, including safe driving style, legislative knowledge, and safe and efficient manoeuvring.
Green says he was extremely impressed with the level of skill from this year’s entrants. “All participants should be very proud of their achievements, and I’d like to extend my congratulations to our well-deserved finalists and winners,” he added.
Simonds said he was thrilled to have won Logistics UK’s Van Driver of the Year 2022 title. “I love my role as a van driver and to be recognised on this scale is overwhelming,” he added.
“It has also been a wonderful opportunity to meet and talk with so many talented drivers here who share the same passion for driving and upholding the high standards and reputation of the sector.
“I would like to thank all of my managers for their ongoing support, particularly Tony Baker and Chris Wilcox for their assistance with this competition. I would also like to thank Logistics UK for recognising the work of our vital sector.”
Second place was awarded to Alex Tilley of Moy Park, with Adam Fretter of Truline securing third place. Additional awards were also presented to winners of particular skills tasks:
- Safe driving style: Paul Simonds
- Economical driving: Alex Tilley
- Legislative knowledge: Paul Simonds
- Manoeuvring: Paul Simonds
- Pre-use defect checks: Carl Lightbown
- Risk assessment: Adam Fretter
Winners were awarded with trophies and prizes, which included a holiday voucher, a Red Letter Day voucher and Amazon vouchers. The 11 shortlisted individuals included drivers from Truline, Moy Park, G4S Cash Solutions, Wayfair, Greencore and Chamberlain Doors.
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