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Two men from Maidstone celebrate 40 years with UK Power Network

Thursday 11th October 2018

TWO men from Maidstone have reached the 40 year milestone in the electricity industry and have been recognized for their service.


Mark Saunders and Colin Gwynee, both from Maidstone joined UK Power Networks in 1978 and have now been awarded for their long service to the company and the local communities in which they keeping the lights on.


Mr. Saunders (Pictured Right), who is now 56, is a first responder, restoring power supplies in the quickest way possible after power cuts.


When looking at his 40 years of service he remembers one particular day.


“My most memorable job was the day I saved a woman’s life. I was called out to an old lady without electricity in the middle of nowhere, but it was difficult to get there due to snow drifts four feet high, on top of a hill. I nearly gave up.


“I had to abandon the car in the road and walk down the driveway. The front door was ajar, so I called out, but nobody answered, and I went round the back where I found the lady, in her 80s, on her knees in the snow. She went out to feed the birds, fell over and couldn’t get up again.


“If I hadn’t been there she wouldn’t have survived another ten minutes, she was frozen. I took her inside, made her a cup of tea and called her daughter. It felt like fate that she lost her electricity that day and phoned us for help, or nobody would have found her.”


Mr. Gwynne, who is 60, who joined the company as an overhead linesman, climbing towers, installing new conductors and carrying out refurbishment, before becoming an area manager said: “I enjoy the camaraderie with all my colleagues, the direction that our company is going in and the enjoyment of doing the job I do, I get great satisfaction out of that.


Both men were rewarded at a special 40+ Club celebration for 40 years of continues service to the company.


Basil Scarsella, chief executive of UK Power Networks, said: “It’s incredibly important to recognise and celebrate the dedication and expertise of our employees, especially those who have served our customers and communities for a long time. 


“As an employer of choice we are always looking for ways to improve and I think some of the best ideas often come from our most experienced staff.”