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Article Date: 10th February 2014

Airedale International - Loyal Employees Help Airedale Notch up another Record

Air Conditioning - IT Cooling - Climate Control - Ventilation Systems

Airedale Awards

There’s one event on Leeds-based air conditioning manufacturer, Airedale International’s calendar that is not to be missed and that’s the opportunity to celebrate the hard work and loyalty of its long-serving employees who have reached milestones of between 10 and 35 years of service.

This year’s awards celebrated nearly 900 years of continuous service by more than 40 individuals, who have notched up an average of 21 years of service each. The business employs more than 425 people globally and 330 in the local area.

Tony Bedard, Airedale’s Technical Quality Engineering Manager, is one of two employees with a tally of 35 years’ service. Attracted by the appeal of a young company which presented him with the opportunity to develop new skills and growing prospects, Tony joined Airedale in 1978 from a local plastic moulding machine manufacturer. Aged 28, he started as an Electrician and was soon promoted to Production Supervisor for the electrical department where he set on Airedale’s first three apprentices, all of whom have now progressed into other areas of the business. Tony’s son, Robert, who recently collected his doctorate in Engineering from Hull University, also works in the project engineering team at Airedale. When asked why he thinks people stay so long at Airedale, Tony said: “The company has always looked after you, both professionally with training and development opportunities, and personally including both you and your family. They recognise that the biggest assets are the people who work here.”

IInternal Sales Engineer for the north of England since 2006, Jeremy Hodgin, has similarly progressed during his 20 years at Airedale, advancing from electrical wiring to test technician and, later, technical support, roles which armed him with the all-important specialist knowledge he needs to respond to customer queries pre and post-sales in his current role. Joining at the start of the technology boom of the 1990s, Jeremy has seen the product range broaden from comfort and industrial process cooling systems to include more technologically advanced precision air condition systems and chillers for an increasing number of data centres, clean rooms and laboratories. “Airedale has always had a reputation for being a good employer. They are keen to support people to study and move up the ladder” said Jeremy, who has seen his employer jump many hurdles that have hit the UK economy, and manufacturing in particular, over the years. Jeremy is now planning to commence studying for an HND at Bradford College which will ultimately lead to aBEng in Mechanical Engineering.

Airedale HR Director, Steve Joyce. “The very high retention rate which we enjoy has many benefits, particularly in terms of transferring skills and knowledge and ensuring business continuity. It is great to be able to attract apprentices and young graduates and to see them progress into bigger roles.”

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