Forklift training history

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FTT. Fork Truck Training. (Lansing Bagnal's training subsidiary)

Forklift stacking eye level

We had some bad news. Our Training Manager stood up suddenly in an old fashioned low ceiling restaurant and banged his head. Apparently he had a thin skull and his brain was damaged so badly that he would never work again.

The RTITB appointed a new one, an ex senior RAF Officer. He introduced several forms which had to be filled in for every course. Brian Todd left MOTEC to join the Fork Truck Approval team in Wembly and I was appointed Head of Department and had to learn about Furniture Removal Training. I was a busy chap because I was still a full time Fork Truck Instructor too! One of my first jobs was to arrange to hire the facilities at Blenhiem Palace in order to produce a training film on how to lower and dismantle  a huge chandelier and then reassemble and rehang it again. That was really interesting.

In 1970 I became frustrated with the increase in bureaucracy  being introduced and  coupled with the appointment of an instructor who I had turned down at interview because he was a friend of the General Manager I decided to leave the RTITB and my family and I moved south to join Lansing Bagnal  (LB) Basingstoke who were setting up a subsidiary company called Fork Truck Training Limited based at Hook in Hampshire where I became the chief instructor and eventually the CEO.

My first job on starting there was to write up training courses for the wide range of machines that Lansing Bagnal produced and catering for novices and experienced, but untrained operators I ended up with a portfolio of over 20 different courses. Now I had to seek approval for them so I contacted Mr Fortnam at the RTITB and made an appointment with him.

When I presented my portfolio he said he could not approve them as no one had any experience with the different equipment. I suggested he contacted the Ministry of Labour which he did and they made it clear that anything that fell under the general heading of fork lift trucks was the RTITB’s responsibility.

The meeting ended with us going to see a couple of the Board’s directors and at my suggestion I arranged for Mr Fortnam and his Approval Team to spend a couple of days at the Demonstration Theatre at Lansing Bagnal where these machines could be demonstrated to them, handbooks for each different model issued to them and all their questions answered. I joined them at LB with copies of my portfolio of courses and the event was a huge success. A couple of weeks later, subject to a few minor modifications my portfolio got approved and we advertised the wide range of courses we were able to offer. Our business took off and we had to recruit more instructors to meet the demand .

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