Mid Ulster technician wins masters award

SOE IRTE Skills Challenge Awards dinner at Rockingham Motor Speedway, Corby, Northamptonshire.''William Scott of Translink Northern Ireland is Skills Masters winner.
SOE IRTE Skills Challenge Awards dinner at Rockingham Motor Speedway, Corby, Northamptonshire.''William Scott of Translink Northern Ireland is Skills Masters winner.

Swatragh technician William Scott has scooped the top award at the IRTE Skills Challenge bus and coach competition.

Mr Scott was victorious in the new Skills Challenge Masters category, a series of mechanical and electrical tasks that test a bus technician’s all-round ability.

An employee of Translink, Mr Scott collected his award at a ceremony at Rockingham Speedway in Northamptonshire, in an event that celebrated the achievements of the best bus and coach technicians in the UK and overseas.

“It was great to compete against other previous winners in the Masters category. It was quite intense, and you have to be able to think on your feet – you have to make decisions very quickly,” said Mr Scott.

More than 90 apprentices and fully-qualified technicians took part in the testing at S&B Automotive Academy in Bristol at the beginning of June, as the IRTE Skills Challenge expanded into a five-day event with new tests, categories and, of course, buses.

It was the fourth time William has entered the competition and has up an award each time.

Winner in the mechanical technician of the year twice, Mr Scott was joint winner of the mechanical/electrical award in 2012.

He continued: “To be named as the winner of the Masters category was a surprise but I am delighted. It’s a great competition and a brilliant experience.”

Presented by Transport Engineer Editor Will Dalrymple – and joined by special guests Howard Seymour, SOE President, DVSA Chief Executive Gareth Llewelyn and former Transport Commissioner Beverley Bell – the ceremony featured a key-note speech from Keith McNally, Operations Director at CPT UK.

SOE Chief Operating Officer, Daniel Moir, said: “The awards lunch is a celebration of engineering excellence in the bus and coach sector. Next year we will be aiming even higher.”