An update from Robert Wilson, Works Manager
July marked a real turning point in the upgrade project: this month we have sent five members of the Borough Green team from production and engineering to Germany to see the first of our new machinery being tested at manufacturer WEHRHAHN.
The level of collaboration between the team at B.G and the engineers at WEHRHAHN is extraordinarily close: we need our team to be completely familiar with the machinery before it arrives here and also to have considered how it will be used and maintained in its working environment – the results of these visits have included some minor modifications to the design to make the implementation stage easier.
Visiting the manufacturer has been an eye-opener for the B.G team and it certainly brings home the scale of the project and the attention to detail required at every stage.
The focus of planning has always been to minimise the downtime for the Borough Green factory which will be three months – a very tight schedule for a project of this size.
Because there is no room for error, we are asking an enormous amount of the equipment manufacturers, including rigorous testing of every piece of machinery before it is brought to Borough Green. This process puts far greater loads on the machinery than it will ever have to cope with in our factory and is designed to ensure faultless operation from the start.
At this stage in the process I am delighted to report that we are absolutely on schedule. Weekly calls with WEHRHAHN check that every detail is completed on time and the project team is kept fully up to speed at all times.
We have continued with the progress even though our Project Manager has changed. Sadly Bob Schanz was taken seriously ill last month and has now been replaced by Steve Brown, also from VA Consulting, who joined the project in July and will be seeing it through to completion. We all wish Bob well and hope he makes a speedy recovery to full health.
From a personal perspective, it is hugely exciting to see the plans really starting to take shape. It is great to have the involvement of the team at Borough Green and, as I write, another three of our engineering team are preparing to fly out to Germany to take part in Stress Testing the machinery and keeping WEHRHAHN on track, pushing the project along.