It’s been quite a ride

31 March 2022 #Uncategorised

This is number 467 of the Transport News Briefs I have written, and it will be the last. After 50 years in the automotive sector, I will be retiring at the end of this week, although the use of the word “retiring” is much more of a convenience, than an accurate description of what I intend to get up to.

When I started as a lowly apprentice, as they were then, seatbelts and crash helmets weren’t mandatory, and ABS was a research project in the bowels of a university. I seem to remember that in the USA at the time, front axle brakes weren’t considered a worthwhile requirement.

Our world has changed much for the better since then. All vehicles are so much more comfortable, environmentally cleaner, and of course, safer – and this journey continues, with last week’s announcement of more funding for zero emission buses, and a new consultation opening on the end of sale date for new fossil-fuelled buses and coaches.

However, for me the biggest change has taken place in the commercial vehicle industry – not just the vehicles, but the whole transport and logistics sector. The long march towards professionalism began in the mid-80s, culminating with drivers (and others) being recognised as essential workers. Today, the public and policy makers alike see the industry as a key component on which UK plc is built – all on the backs of some dedicated and hard-working people.

If you would like to stay in touch, then I can be found on LinkedIn, while Transport News Brief will remain in the very capable hands of SMMT’s experts with whom I’ve worked alongside over the past decade. So, I’ll say goodbye, it’s been quite a ride. Good luck, everyone.

Nigel Base,
Commercial Vehicle Manager

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