This business has been in the Thompson family for three generations. My Grandfather, Roderick E. Thompson, bought the site in 1949 and worked it with my father, Colin, growing commercial glasshouse crops in an acre of glass (salad & flowers) and supplied them to London & the Home Counties. We grew in natural soil, adding organic fertilisers and manure. During this period we learned a great deal about plant nutrition and soil conditioning, and how and where to source the purest and most fertile growing materials. We still adhere to those high standards today when buying soil. We only purchase green field loams. My Father and Mother took over the business from my Grandfather in 1975. I began to work for them after school and in the holidays and joined the firm full-time in 1977. During the 1980’s most of the businesses in Crews Hill changed from nurseries to garden centres and in this time of transition our role here at Thompsons also changed. In 1982 we commenced selling soil and soil conditioners. We progressed to stock most types of soil, fertilisers, mulches, composts, and anything, in fact, connected with soil. We began a delivery service and started to stock turf.
In 1990 we ceased commercial growing and changed the whole site to the garden supply business embracing rockery stone, cobbles, pebbles, chippings, aggregates, sleepers, etc. We have invested in a modern screening plant and have updated our well kept fleet of lorries with another Mercedes, in-keeping with the current emissions laws. I took over the business in June 2009, together with my family and loyal staff, we will endeavor to continue to provide you with an unrivalled service. Says Rod Thompson – Managing Director ‘
We came across FORS when tendering for work across London. When we looked at the requirements and benefits of joining the scheme we saw that they fitted in perfectly with our ethos of improving safety whilst complementing our drive to improve fuel efficiency and reduce our environmental impact’
We take compliance and safety very seriously so we achieved our Bronze and Silver Accreditation first time. FORS did help us by providing training and tools that improved the policies and procedures’
The performance management toolkit really helped us set our targets for reducing our carbon footprint and improving our MPG. FORS has helped us improve our filing systems and procedures’
‘FORS has helped us achieve compliance and safety’ – David Hatton – Transport Manager
All our drivers have completed their Safe Urban Driving course which was funded by the Transport for London. We have also invested heavily in vehicle safety systems cameras, nearside proximity sensors and audible alarms for all our vehicles. All our drivers have also completed FORS E-Learning modules.’
‘We have Improved our MPG across the fleet by 15.85% since our baseline year’ – David Hatton Transport Manager
- We have managed to keep our Parking fines and accidents/incidents down to zero for the last 2 years. We achieved this by making sure we always selected the best route possible to all our sites and we plan ahead before leaving the yard
|MPG||Incidents||Parking Fines and Charges|
|Aug 14-Jul 2015||9.15||0||0|
|Aug 16-Jul 2017||10.60||0||0|
*No incidents or PCN’s for the past 2 years.
- We get all my drivers to complete a comprehensive Medical Declaration on an annual basis even though the FORS Standard states once every 5 years. It’s also mentioned in the driver’s handbook that if they at any point in time start suffering from a medical condition they need to notify the company ASAP as well as if they need to start taking medication prescribed by their GP or over the counter drugs. We will then investigate it to see if it’s still safe for the driver to be driving for the company and we may even ask the driver to get a letter from his doctor informing the company if he is still able to drive for the company. We will then start doing more driver assessments on the driver to make sure he isn’t a risk to the company or anyone on the road.
- We have recently adopted a recruitment policy to try and help us recruit young drivers into the Transport industry.
- We only use the Operating centre for parking our lorries. All our servicing is done by main dealers at their sites, not ours. The only noise generated is when my lorries are idling so we can carry out our defect checks. All my lorries have white noise reversing alarms fitted to them.
- We carry heavy equipment and landscaping products to and from construction sites across the whole country. We move anything from a digger to compost. As we rely on our customers asking us to collect equipment from various construction sites across the whole country, we never know where we are going until they need us. Therefore we can’t afford to try and move anything via barge or train as we collect all the equipment from building sites and there is no other method than using a lorry and we then asked to deliver anywhere in the country. So using a Lorry is the most cost-effective way of moving our client’s goods. We are replacing all our lorries with as and when they are due with Euro 6 engines. We have looked at electric vehicles and because of the weights we carry and the fact that our lorries have specialist equipment fitted no manufacture have produced an alternative fueled vehicle that can carry the weight we do and go over the same terrain we do.
We will continue using what FORS has taught us to improve our MPG and reduce any wasted idling we might have and keep our Parking fines and Charges to zero.
Gaining FORS Gold Accreditation shows how dedicated we are as a company to improving road safety and the safety of all vulnerable road users in London as well as nationally. We will continuously use what FORS has taught us to help reduce our carbon footprint and make the roads so safer for everyone that uses them. We have also managed to make a significant saving by reducing our fuel usage and improving our MPG.
Please note: All published FORS Gold case studies have been submitted by the accredited company named above and transcribed verbatim