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After leaving school, Simon began an apprenticeship scheme with Wessex Control & Automation. His apprenticeship featured day release at Poole College and he completed a three-year course – a City & Guilds 232 Parts 1 and 2 in electronic and electrical engineering.
He worked on the shop floor at Wessex Control & Automation, learning how to build electrical control systems. His skills and potential were duly noted by his employers and after three years he was promoted to the design and engineering department – a role that involved quoting and meeting clients.
Simon’s next move was to a local electrical company where they opened a manufacturing department. He was made a Director of the company and remained in this position for three years before starting up his own business, a company named Wessex Automated Systems.
Simon said: “We designed and built control systems for many industries such as smoke and vent, cement, water, steel and pharmaceutical. We also had an electrical installation arm of the business which carried out the majority of our large installation projects.”
In 2005, Wessex Automated Systems became part of the SCS Group, then Smoke Control Services, and was rebranded SCS Automation. Simon remained a Director.
When asked what part of his job he likes the most, Simon said: “I enjoy the challenges that come with manufacturing. Obviously, completing a project on time and within budget is very fulfilling.”
Outside work, Simon enjoys playing golf and regularly attends the gym and fitness classes such as body pump and spin.
He is also a football fan, supporting the Saints (Southampton Football Club). He said: “It’s been a very bumpy few years but I’ve stuck by them.”