Slough-based Jim Valentine (pictured) of The British Shop has secured second overall place at Logistics UK’s Van Driver of the Year 2021. Valentine, a Langley local, is celebrating after also winning two categories – legislative knowledge and risk assessment.
Logistics UK has long celebrated van drivers as the unsung heroes of our economy and with more than four million van drivers currently operating on the UK’s roads, these awards are the perfect opportunity to formally recognise the best in the industry.
Kevin Green, marketing and communications director at Logistics UK comments: "Van drivers are the backbone of the UK economy, serving the needs of the nation continuously through online doorstop deliveries, essential utility services and the delivery of vital goods needed by schools, businesses and hospitals. The role of a van driver is challenging and complex: drivers must work safely and efficiently while navigating sometimes challenging road spaces and various pressures, such as time and the lifting of potentially awkward goods.
"While we are extremely proud to recognise van drivers each year, this time we are especially delighted to celebrate and raise awareness of the sector that has worked so hard to meet the needs of the nation throughout this pandemic. Van drivers have shown incredible determination and professionalism throughout these challenging times and Logistics UK is thrilled to celebrate these talented individuals. All participating drivers have shown exceptional skill throughout the day’s challenges and should be very proud of their achievements."
During the assessment day, held 10 July 2021 at Bott Ltd in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, 12 shortlisted individuals – drivers from The British Shop, G4S Manchester, Alliance Healthcare, Wayfair, Alloga UK, SMS PLC, VOW Europe, Truline and Greencore – took part in a series of theoretical and practical challenges aimed at testing their driving skills, legislative knowledge and vehicle defect identification.
Sam Burton of Wayfair was crowned Logistics UK’s Driver of the Year as well as Van Excellence Driver, a category open only to certified operators of the business group’s Van Excellence Scheme. Third overall place was awarded to Tomasz Niemiec of Greencore. Additional awards were also presented to winners of particular skills tasks:
Safe Driving Style, sponsored by Quartix: Tomasz Niemiec of Greencore
Economical Driving, sponsored by Hertz: Douglas Smith of Alloga UK
Legislative Knowledge, sponsored by Lex Autolease: Jim Valentine of The British Shop
Manoeuvring, sponsored by Brigade Electronics: Tomasz Niemiec of Greencore
Pre-use defect checks, sponsored by AA: Douglas Smith of Alloga UK
Risk assessment, sponsored by TVL: Jim Valentine of The British Shop
A presentation took place on the day where winners were awarded their well-deserved trophies. Prizes included a holiday voucher, a GoPro and Amazon Vouchers.
About The British Shop
The British Shop is a Berkshire provider of shipping to the fine art and antiques industry; it also works with leading interior designers, taking care of all their logistical needs, from small one offs to entire projects. The British Shop has the resources and expertise to handle the collections, consolidation, storage, shipping and delivery to site.
About Logistics UK
Logistics UK is a business group, representing logistics businesses which are vital to keeping the UK trading, and more than seven million people directly employed in the making, selling and moving of goods. With Covid-19, Brexit, new technology and other disruptive forces driving change in the way goods move across borders and through the supply chain, logistics has never been more important to UK plc.
Logistics UK supports, shapes and stands up for safe and efficient logistics, and is the only business group which represents the whole industry, with members from the road, rail, sea and air industries, as well as the buyers of freight services such as retailers and manufacturers whose businesses depend on the efficient movement of goods.