Back in the year 2000 the city of Coventry passed its entire stock of social housing – 17,500 homes in all – to the Whitefriars Housing Association, one of a number of associations operating in the West Midlands, Herefordshire and Worcestershire which are now part of the W. M. Housing Group.
As well as upkeep of the housing stock, an essential part of maintaining an attractive and well-managed environment is care of the grass areas, open spaces and verges –1.2 million square metres of them in Coventry’s case. Until recently this task was in the hands of contractors, but now Whitefriars has started its own subsidiary, GreenWorks, to maintain the green areas.
Ken Lindsay, supervisor at GreenWorks, has two assistants and 25 operatives to ensure that the rolling progamme of work is completed to a high standard. “When we took over from the contractors we had nothing,” Ken explains, “so the first job was to acquire the right equipment. We knew from past experience that Ferris and Wright produce tough, reliable machines so we asked a number of local suppliers to tender.
“After meeting the teams we placed the order with T H White’s Redditch branch and I’m so glad we did. The support and back-up they have given us – particularly our rep Lee Miles – as we got the new operation up and running, has been outstanding.”
GreenWorks has taken delivery of a Ferris FW35 flail mower, a large Ferris IS5100 rotary mower and five smaller IS2600 rotary mowers, together with five Wright Standers for confined and more difficult areas. Added to that were five Ifor Williams trailers for transporting the mowers to site.
“From a standing start, T H White has helped us maintain an environment we are all proud of,” Ken added.