Congratulations to Sandwell company Whitcombe Pipelines (WPL) on securing a £2m contract to work on HS2.
WPL is a gas distributor and reinstatement specialist that was founded in August 2018 by its director Damian Whitcombe. Damian started his gas career in 2000 as his dad Ron’s apprentice and learnt his trade from the bottom up.
The company was launched with a view to providing affordable sustainable gas and utility installation services for an array of clients across the UK. It is currently delivering work for GDSP West Midlands area as a tier 1 contractor.
As part of the HS2 contract WPL will complete reinstatement works for gas pipelines, as well building new access roads and verges. It anticipates that more than 40 people will be employed across several locations at any one time during the project.
Based in Rowley Regis and employing 160 people, WPL has been working alongside Wolverhampton’s National Infrastructure Solutions (NIS) ‘Recruit, Train, Retain’ model to pass all the requirements for working on HS2.
NIS provides specialist training for the rail, infrastructure and construction sectors. It has developed a workflow app that delivers a multi-user reporting application allowing the user to conduct surveys, and arrange appointments, whilst also supporting planning and delivery of reinstatement works.
The app allows users to upload picture evidence and collate information into a single job card report that ensures the client receives a first-class experience.
WPL believes that NIS has increased its ability to attract fresh talent to the sector while ensuring compliance amongst its current workforce – both vital components when tendering for the HS2 and other rail contracts as it provides an easy way of demonstrating a forward-thinking approach and competency compliance across its workers.
Following a major year of growth for the company, with sales doubling to £10m over the past twelve months, it has been necessary to bring in additional expertise and the relationship with NIS typifies the type of partnerships WPL is trying to build.
WPL believes that its focus must be on recruiting fresh people into the industry, as well as multi-skilling and upskilling its current workforce.
WPL is now in discussions with NIS about introducing bespoke industry specific courses to support WPL’s move into major civil engineering projects across the West Midlands and beyond.
For help and support to find procurement and tendering opportunities in Sandwell, the West Midlands and beyond visit our Procurement opportunities page.