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Big changes at Taunton Trade Counter

We were excited to hold a Grand Opening event at the Taunton Trade Counter last month. Tom Abell, the captain of the Somerset County Cricket team joined us to cut the ribbon to the sound of popping champagne.

The Taunton Trade counter now stocks a variety of items including Ingco Tools, pressure washers, hose and lance, blowguns, PVC hose, poly tubes, oils, o-rings, spill kits, Ambersil products, Bondloc products and much more. If the Taunton project is considered a success, the principles will be gradually applied to Stroud and Plymouth trade counters, tailored to their respective customer bases.

New Faces: read more about the recent additions to our team

Ben Foskett

What is your role? Graduate Mechanical Design Engineer

What is your background?

I studied for a degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Liverpool, graduating in July this year. Before university I went to college at Richard Huish College in Taunton, where I did my A-levels. One of the main motivations for me to study engineering was my interest in cars from a young age, and at university I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to join the university’s formula student team. This gave me the opportunity to work on the design and construction of a single-seater racing car, which we then competed against other universities.

What brought you to Rotec?

After completing my degree I moved back home to Somerset and began looking for a job. The position advertised at Rotec fitted in well with what I was looking for. Hydraulics is something that I have been interested in for a while and I was drawn to the greater variety of work at a smaller company.

Hobbies and interest:

My most long-term interest is in cars, particularly American muscle, and at university formula student took up most of my free time. I also have ambitions of learning to sail.

Role: Warehouse assistant

Previously: Apprentice trained dessert chef

Will joined Rotec Taunton almost 6 weeks ago. He is quite new to the industry, as he is an apprentice trained dessert chef turn warehouse assistant. Will had worked in catering for 6 years, before desserting (pun intended) the career path he set out on and pounced on the opportunity to join Rotec.

“The work is definitely challenging, but I am enjoying it. I hope to pass the probation period and stay with the company for the years to come’

Will used to play a lot of football, particularly six-a-side and go out a lot. Now he enjoys watching films and catching up with his mates when he gets the chance.

Phil O’Connor
Role: Hose Doctor, covering Cardiff, Gloucestershire and Bristol areas

Phil has over 30 years of experience of working in the hydraulic industry. His in-depth knowledge of hydraulic systems, tools and equipment is perfect for the varied role in the often challenging environment.

“I decided to join Rotec as it’s a well-known company and their reputation in this field is second to none.”
Why thank you Phil, we are pleased to have you and wish you well in your new venture!

What are your hobbies? Hobbies Classic Cars and Golf.
Derek Bowden

Role: Operations Engineer

Derek has many years of interesting experience under his belt. From maintaining rides at Butlins in Minehead, to upgrading irrigation systems in Tanzania.

Derek had worked at Rotec once before, so after taking a voluntary redundancy from his 10 years as a Maintenance Engineer turn Manager at Goodridge, he returned to his roots and applied for a position at Rotec. Derek is, once again, a credit to our team and after being part of a team working on bespoke winching systems for maintenance vehicles, he was offered a new role in operations.

Derek is currently laying a solid foundation and putting new procedures in place, ensuring smooth and safe running of all operations.

In his spare time he enjoys a game of skittles and darts, he is also skilled at DIY and loves taking his wife for holidays and weekends away in their motorhome.

Matt Turnbull

Role: Purchasing Manager

What is your background? I’ve worked within an engineering department of a large ready meals manufacturer for the last 17 years. With the last few of those years in a group procurement role, looking at the overall purchasing functions of engineering on four different sites throughout the UK.
What brought you to Rotec? I felt that I had achieved all that I possibly could within my old company and needed to increase my knowledge in a new setting – I’ve never been within a customer facing company before so when I was looking for new jobs, that was one of the main criteria that I was looking for. After meeting with the directors, the challenges that Rotec offered, and the direction they want to take the company excited me, in the end it was an easy decision.
Do you have any hobbies? No, I hate fun.

Mark Hoadley

Role: Warehouse Assistant

Previously: Goods in at Rexquote

Mark has only very recently joined Rotec Taunton. He has started his career as a food factory worker, gradually working his way up to a supervisory position and eventually moving onto working as a van driver, before finding his way to engineering firms and warehouse based roles.

With years of experience of working in warehouses, driving a van and 8 years as a Storeman at Rexquote, he is a valuable addition to the Taunton warehouse team.

Mark decided to join Rotec as it is a well-established local company with a good reputation. Mark relates ‘There is a lot to learn, the procedures and system is different, but Dale is a good teacher – very patient!’ he smiles.

Mark used to be a keen football and cricket player, but is now retired from active sports and he is a huge Manchester United fan!

Matthew Chinn

Role: Contract Mechanical Design Engineer

What is my background?
I have a background in electro-mechanical engineering and computer programming. I have been contracting for the last couple of years and started my own company just under a year ago. I’ve been writing code since 1988, I started getting interested in hobby electronics in 1998 and started to move towards mechanical engineering in 2008. I studied for a HNC in Electronic Engineering on day release while working as an Engineer at TDK-Lambda, before topping up my qualifications to a BSc (Hons) in Electro-Mechanical Design & Manufacture. I have a broad background in engineering, including switch-mode power supply design, writing firmware for microcontrollers, designing injection moulded plastic parts, test development and automation.

What brought me to Rotec?
I was approached by Huxley (contract recruiter) about a 10 week position at Rotec. I came to meet Richard and found Rotec to be an interesting company. I don’t have a background in hydraulics, so thought it would be an excellent opportunity to learn something new.

Do I have any hobbies?
Since starting my own business I haven’t had much time for hobbies. I like to get out into the countryside and go walking when I have the time.

Matt Bearpark

What is your role? My role is as hose doctor engineer working under the Parker hose doctor brand. Day to day I visit customers, carry out quotes for customers and carry out breakdowns /repairs to most hydraulically operated machinery, from excavators to forklifts and lorries to factory fit-outs.

What is your background?
Left college after studying construction/design after which I joined a window fitting company.
After losing my mum in 2012 my family pushed me to better myself and thus I moved to Australia where I started working for Enzed, the largest hydraulic hose company in Australia. Running a franchise van (under the Parker Hannifin brand) serving small and big customers, in the utilities, mining, offshore oil rigs sectors and a few big truck companies.
After the mining industry took a big hit in 2015 I returned to work in the UK with firstly Pirtek, and then I joined Rotec, as they offered the sort of personal development opportunity I was looking for.

My hobbies
From playing football and going to the gym, to watching motorsports and supporting the Spurs. This season I also started to train the Hamilton park under 11’s, but nothing can beat a weekend days at Crealy with my partner and stepchildren.

Restoring a submersible at Aerospace Bristol

Last year Rotec were approached by the Bristol Aero Collection Trust, the registered charity behind Aerospace Bristol – a new £19m museum on the historic Filton airfield. The museum tells the story of more than a century of aviation history, from the Boxkite to the modern day, with the last Concorde ever to fly as Aerospace Bristol’s stunning centrepiece. The restoration work at the museum has been undertaken almost entirely by volunteers with technical expertise.

Rotec were contracted to help restore the CONSUB back to life after almost 60 years since it first hit water. The Continental Shelf Submersible or CONSUB is an unmanned submersible developed in the 1970 by BAC Electronic Systems Group at Filton. The remotely controlled seabed exploration vehicle was designed to operate to a depth of 2000ft., at an underwater speed of 2 1/3 knots, controlled with 1km of umbilical cable.

Harry Crick, one of the BACT volunteers explains:

“Tests were carried out in tracking underwater telephone cables and inspection of seabed features. In 1977, Consub 2 (built by British Aerospace and operated by SubSea Surveys) went into operation in the North Sea working on pipeline inspection and seabed survey. Day rates were half those of the manned submersible spread and eventually, 24h operations were achieved. This resulted in the large ROV becoming the accepted method for pipeline inspection.”

However the last surviving specimen, the CONSUB 1, was not in a working condition. It was donated by the British Geological Survey who previously used it as a display in their car park in Edinburgh.

The renovation and overhaul of Consub was carried out by Bristol volunteers at the museum.
Rotec was tasked with the design, build and supply a hydraulic power unit & electrical control system, that could be used to control the original thrusters and drill head, allowing the museum staff to demonstrate the system functionality. In order to preserve the original condition and appearance of the submersible, the original power unit was left fitted (even though it is not functional) and some of the original solid pipework routes were replicated and utilised using new tube and fittings.
Rotec built a brand hydraulic power unit which is concealed with in the exhibits structure, which will allow the CONSUB to be controlled through a control panel designed and build by Rotec, instead of through the original umbilical cords.


Visit Aerospace Bristol for more information, to help raise funds, book a meeting or a conference ‘Under the wings of Concorde’ or to volunteer at this exceptional new venue.

Date: 21/09/2017

Author: Sarka Humpolcova

Hose Doctor: minimizing downtime at local quarry

Rotec were pleased to be recently joined by two Hose Doctor operatives: Matt Bearpark and Phil O’Connor. Matt covers Somerset and Bristol areas, while Phil covers areas surrounding Cardiff, Gloucester and Bristol.

Tower Leg Winches

Matt was recently called out to a local quarry, where two rams were leaking and needed to be back at work asap.

Matt relates:

“One ram was bent and the other had deep gouging in the rod causing leaking from both rams. Brand new rods had to machined and fitted along with new seal kits fitted. After removing rams from the excavator arm fitted inside the crusher housing I took them to Ram Reman” (Rotec’s sister company based in Wimborne, specialising in repair and manufacture of rams – hydraulic cylinders).



“The removal and refit took me 4 hours in total, while Ram Reman spent a day repairing and testing the ram functions, ready for refit. I was very happy with the feedback I received, the customer was really pleased with the short breakdown period and now the arms are working a lot tighter than they had before.”

Due to time constraints the repaired rams were not re-sprayed, but now work better than ever! Visit Ram Reman’s website for more information (new site currently under construction).

Date: 19/09/2017

Author: Sarka Humpolcova

NEW Mobile Hose Doctor van now in operation

Mobile Hose Doctor service

Rotec are Introducing a New mobile ON-SITE hose repair/replacement service. The service has now been launched in Taunton and surrounding areas during the month of April 2017. The Hose Doctor van is a mobile workshop that carries a full range of Parker connectors and hoses.


Save the number: 07710 305 340 / 0800 373 587


  • 1 hour maximum waiting time (unless otherwise informed)
  • Experienced engineer specialised in hydraulics ensures that repairs are carried out rapidly and to a high standard.
  • We use only genuine Parker parts that meet international standards and our own highly demanding specifications
  • Experience and expertise in a wide variety of hydraulic and pneumatic applications: plant hire, car transporters, fork lift trucks, aerial lift, lift trucks, truck cranes, refuse trucks, agriculture, marine, utilities
  • No hose assembly, cleaning or pellet charges
  • No consumables charges

Covered areas include:  Exeter, Tiverton, Taunton, Bridgwater, Honiton, Crewkerne, Yeovil, Street and Bristol

Taunton and surrounding areas

Author: Sarka Humpolcova

Date: 21/07/2017

Extreme lifting: Using Rotec winching systems at 500 ft

At the beginning of 2016, we started to work with National Grid, contracted to support the company’s hydraulic, pneumatic and electronic needs alongside the primary project (bespoke winching systems for their fleet of vehicles), and we didn’t have to wait long for a challenging project to come through.

Tower Leg Winches

The company was planning a maintenance project in and around of Chepstow, involving the lowering and raising of insulators on the two 500ft high river crossing towers spanning the river Severn, which form part of the national grid and the 21,000 towers owned by the company in the UK.

Chris Land, National Grid’s Equipment and Live Working Overhead Line Engineer supervising the project relates:

“This project has been challenging from the start, not only because of the height of the towers but also because the tower loadings and fittings on these towers are totally unique compared to the rest of the towers on the transmission network. The insulators were last changed in 1969 and we have very limited experience of working on these towers, we have been working from 50 year old drawings and information to develop the procedures necessary to carry out the replacement of the insulators. The primary focus has been to maintain a safe working environment for the linesman carrying out the work to enable the work to be delivered safely and within the timescales. The work was delivered well within the allotted timescales with zero incidents”



lowering old insulators

Lowering old insulators

swapping old for new

Swapping old for new

New insulators lifted into position

New insulators lifted into position




Preparations for this project have taken over 6 months, with 6 weeks given to the crew to complete the work on the two 500 ft high towers. Rotec was asked to design and build a bespoke Tower Leg Capstan Winch Assembly for the project, capable of lowering and raising the heavy insulators on a system of ropes.

The assembly consists of three main components: capstan winch, engine drive unit and a reservoir unit. Adrian Derbidge, Rotec’s engineer assigned to the project says “This is a powerful unit, with a safe working limit of up to 1 ton on a dynamic line pull”. Adrian has seen the project through from the start, starting with the design and build, all the way to the site visits, maintaining his presence in case of any adjustments being necessary. He says the challenges in this project were in keeping the units as light as possible and compact, while retaining their ability to tackle heavy loads.

Click below to watch the National Grid engineers work at dizzying heights as shown on the news:




Date: 27/04/2017

Author: Sarka Humpolcova