Atlas Winch & Hoist Services

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Atlas Winch & Hoist Services's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Atlas Winch & Hoist Services is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett, MP
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles, MP

Directors Anton and Denis
A huge fleet of specialist equipment
for the utilities industries
Focusing on the supply and hire of winches, lifting gear
and cable-pulling equipment, Atlas Winch & Hoist Services
have become a leading specialist in their field. Established
by Denis Lavery, with his brother Anton joining the fold a few
years later, they have recently expanded into the renewable
energy and utilities sector. The company has worked on projects
as influential and diverse as the Olympic Park and the Costa
Concordia salvage operation. Director Anton Lavery talks about
his background in the industry and what has allowed Atlas to
achieve their success.
Now owned and operated by my brother Denis Lavery and me, our company
was founded in 1998 by Denis in central Scotland. Prior to this, we had worked
together elsewhere in the industry, where we gained extensive experience in
senior positions. A few years later, I joined forces with Denis to help to establish a
presence in the south of the UK. Growth has been both impressive and sustained,
helped by a desire to become better and a willingness to change and evolve.
Old-fashioned family values have also helped to retain perspective and avoid
complacency, ensuring the business maintains its solid foundations.
From aircraft carriers to Terminal 5
Over the years, we have been involved in numerous high-profile projects, including
Wembley Stadium, Heathrow Terminal 5, the Costa Concordia salvage operation,
»Directors: Anton and Denis
»Established in 1998
»Based in Biggar, Scotland, and
Great Dunmow, Essex
»Services: Hire, sales, servicing,
testing, inspection and
training for winches, lifting
equipment and cable-pulling
»No. of employees: 34
»A family-owned and operated
Atlas Winch & Hoist
Highlighting best practice
Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers,
the Olympic Park, Humber Gateway
Offshore Wind Farm, Crossrail
and the new Forth Road Crossing
near Edinburgh, to name a few.
Developments in the renewable sector
have also seen us become increasingly
active with solar, wind and tidal
energy projects. Over the past ten
years, we have also successfully
exploited opportunities in the utilities
sector, hiring and supplying various
winches, cable drum trailers and
accessories for power and telecoms
cables, as well as for water and gas
pipelines. Today, we possess one of
the largest rental fleets of its kind
serving the utilitiesmarkets.
We provide a diverse range of
products and services. We offer both
purchase and hire options for our
winches, hoists, cable drum trailers
and cable pushers. We provide general
lifting equipment; full overhauls and
refurbishments; and the service, repair
and inspection of equipment to ensure
that it complies with regulations. We
have also begun providing winch
operating training courses.
A global knowledge of the
While Denis and I have a wealth of
experience, we have also successfully
recruited and retained quality staff
to enhance the business and the
customer experience. Trained and
experienced staff are better equipped
to understand the customer’s needs
and therefore offer the best advice to
meet technical needs, performance
requirements, timescales and budget
constraints. With a global knowledge
of the market, all options can be
considered for hire or sale, new
Staff are also trained and qualified
with the Lifting Equipment Engineers
Association to back up their extensive
practical experience. Our business also
holds ISO 9001 registration and is
currently finalising accreditation with
the Energy & Utility Skills Register for
the winch operator training courses
Dealing with fluctuating
market prices
Political and economic developments
have inevitably had an impact on
business, and the climate remains
fragile. Activities in the oil and gas
market were hit hard in Scotland
when oil prices fell sharply in early
2016. Although the situation is
looking more positive now, the
recovery has been slow and customers
remain cautious. Brexit continues
to loom large and undermines
confidence and certainty across all
sectors. The effect on the value of
the pound since the referendum is
much clearer, and with many of our
supply partners based in mainland
Europe, the increased cost of plant
and equipment cannot be ignored or
Our strategy to steer the business
through challenging times has been
Ten-tonne track-mounted
winch with one kilometre of
wire rope for cable and pipe
pulling applications
Our business is
all about
service and
satisfaction –
their needs is
the key
element of our
based on a focus on our core values
and the quality of the products and
services we provide. Some of our
competitors have opted to cut hire
rates, but this only provides short-
term gains and ultimately devalues
the market. We have seen this as an
opportunity to differentiate ourselves
as the true experts in our field.
We have also managed to maintain
high levels of investment in new
plant, equipment and facilities, so
we are better placed than most to
react to new opportunities. During
this time, we have also successfully
completed the acquisition of a new
business in Scotland. Lifting Material
Supplies is a traditional lifting tackle
supply company, selling a range of
standard, proprietary items, such as
chain blocks, clamps, scaffold hoists,
jacks, slings, shackles, and rope and
chain from respected brands, such as
Tractel, Gunnebo, Crosby and William
Hackett. LMS also have extensive
testing and inspection capabilities,
with an in-house 100-tonne static
test bed and a 160-tonne mobile
Continued investment in equipment
remains a focus to increase both the
size and the diversity of the rental
fleet, as well as keeping it up to
date and in line with customer and
industry demands. Increased use of
technology, specifically through the
use of app-based services, is also
helping our efficiency with back-office
functions, as well as enhancing the
Fundamentally, it is our core values,
knowledge and expertise that set us
apart, and these features remain at
the heart of what we do and how
we do it, ensuring we deliver the
best advice and the best solutions for
Working with
our partners
means we’re
at the
forefront of
new products
and services
that benefit
our customers
We supplied four and
six-point mooring
systems for the
construction of the
tower foundations on
the new Forth Crossing

The Parliamentary Review Publication, in which this article originally appeared, contained the following foreword from The Rt Hon Theresa May MP.

The Rt Hon Theresa May MP's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By The Rt Hon Theresa May MP

This foreword from the then Prime Minister appeared in the 2018/19 Parliamentary Review.

British politics provides ample material for analysis in the pages of The Parliamentary Review. For Her Majesty’s Government, our task in the year ahead is clear: to achieve the best Brexit deal for Britain and to carry on our work to build a more prosperous and united country – one that truly works for everyone. 

The right Brexit deal will not be sufficient on its own to secure a more prosperous future for Britain. We also need to ensure that our economy is ready for what tomorrow will bring. Our Modern Industrial Strategy is our plan to do that. It means Government stepping up to secure the foundations of our productivity: providing an education system that delivers the skills our economy needs, improving school standards and transforming technical education; delivering infrastructure for growth; ensuring people have the homes they need in the places they want to live. It is all about taking action for the long-term that will pay dividends in the future.

But it also goes beyond that. Government, the private sector and academia working together as strategic partners achieve far more than we could separately. That is why we have set an ambitious goal of lifting UK public and private research and development investment to 2.4 per cent of GDP by 2027. It is why we are developing four Grand Challenges, the big drivers of social and economic change in the world today: harnessing artificial intelligence and the data revolution; leading in changes to the future of mobility; meeting the challenges of our ageing society; and driving ahead the revolution in clean growth. By focusing our efforts on making the most of these areas of enormous potential, we can develop new exports, grow new industries and create more good jobs in every part of our country.

Years of hard work and sacrifice from the British people have got our deficit down by over three quarters. We are building on this success by taking a balanced approach to public spending. We are continuing to deal with our debts, so that our economy can remain strong and we can protect people’s jobs, and at the same time we are investing in vital public services, like our NHS. We have set out plans to increase NHS funding annually by an average by 3.4 percent in real terms: that is £394 million a week more. In return, the NHS will produce a ten-year plan, led by doctors and nurses, to eliminate waste and improve patient care.

I believe that Britain can look to the future with confidence. We are leaving the EU and setting a new course for prosperity as a global trading nation. We have a Modern Industrial Strategy that is strengthening the foundations of our economy and helping us to seize the opportunities of the future. We are investing in the public services we all rely on and helping them to grow and improve. Building on our country’s great strengths – our world-class universities and researchers, our excellent services sector, our cutting edge manufacturers, our vibrant creative industries, our dedicated public servants – we can look towards a new decade that is ripe with possibility. The government I lead is doing all it can to make that brighter future a reality for everyone in our country. 

British politics provides ample material for analysis in the pages of The Parliamentary Review 
The Rt Hon Theresa May MP
Prime Minister