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K e e p i n g o u r s t a ff i n f o r m e d

October 19th 2012

Issue 20

Team praises Utopian vision

Blue Sky meets the blue party Former leader of the Conservative Party, Iain Duncan Smith, has given his seal of approval to the project Spencer has helped to make possible for young adults in Hull. Mr Duncan Smith, now the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, visited the project in Dock Street on Thursday morning. He said: “It is a fantastic project and exactly the kind of thing we, in Government, are looking for. “The importance of businesses, like Spencer, backing these schemes is essential but the benefits are there for all. Business can build its own supply chain.” Blue Sky is a programme of entrepreneurial workshops and talks which are designed to help young adults start up their own businesses. We backed the first course financially, and created a programme of learning. Although this second course is being backed by the Jobcentre Plus, we are still actively organising the classes and involving our staff in the workshops so that these young entrepreneurs can learn from us. Iain Duncan Smith met charity Catzero, and learned about the work they do, including the Blue Sky programme which is arranged in conjunction with Spencer and Jobcentre Plus.

Business Developer Simon Collins’ better half, Kristie, is getting her best Christmas recipes ready for a whole range of cakes so they can be ordered and collected from our offices in Hull. If you want to know more, visit

Bob Graham and his team have praised the hard work of our Utopia specialists, headed up by Caroline Johnson and her plant team. As many will know – probably first hand from the work they have done on site – the Utopia team take the sting out of the project setup, ensuring there are cabins, equipment and all the infrastructure in place ready for a project to go ahead. This means the site team doesn’t have to worry about data connections, electricity, running water or cabins – they can just get on with the job. Bob said: “Utopia has just set up our new site facilities at Royal Portbury Dock, and done an excellent job in doing so at short notice. Normally Caroline has under a week’s notice to organise and mobilise a full site setup (cabins, generator, office supplies, supplies, cleaners etc. - the list goes on) ready for the site staff and contractors to move straight on site. So hats off to the full Utopia team: Caroline, Andy, the electricians, and not forgetting Laura at HQ who was on the end of the phone should CJ require emails sending to suppliers or anything else.”

Not so SIMple

Work continues in Wessex

Diane Rowe wants to warn parents not to let their kids get too carried away by The Sims app – apparently the items in the game can cost real money... and she knows someone who has unwittingly racked up £500 on their iTunes bill!

Neil Stuart has written to In Touch to tell us about his team’s latest efforts to drive a programme of about 100 platform extensions in the South. He said: “We have started work at Norwood Junction station on a short platform extension with an even shorter programme. It is the first of a series to be done on and around the West London Line for the Network Rail Sussex Route, and has to be opened by 9th December 2012. In keeping with the very tight programme and budget.

Piece of cake We were going to hold back on this for a couple of weeks, but as In Touch is partial to a bit of cake, we thought we would let people know so they could order some for us as soon as possible for a ‘surprise’ present.

Wokingham Spencer and Network Rail are holding a drop-in day for local residents interested in the latest goings on at Wokingham Station on the 7th November. Wokingham is a £3.5m project to replace the existing station building including it’s ticket office.

“Paul Broadley and Peter Finch are pushing the job along, with the assistance of our partners Nationwide Rail. Piling started recently, and should be finished before you read this.”

Work is its own award

Your Voice update

OUR very own Steve McDonald was recognised in a shortlist of nominees at a prestigious awards ceremony at the House of Commons. Steve McDonald joined our team at Edinburgh Waverley as part of the Youthbuild project - a scheme set up to help young people facing adversity to work in the construction industry – and has become an integral part of the team ever since. The Young Builder of the Year Awards celebrates the achievements of young people who, despite having to overcome personal barriers, have succeeded in training or gaining employment in the construction industry. The competition, which began in 2000, is open to young builders from across the UK and is now entering its 13th year. The judges were looking for young builders who have made outstanding achievements, both professionally and personally, overcoming barriers to get to where they are now. Members of the shortlist were people who would not have been able to access employment in the construction industry without the support of the organisation or project team. Steve said: “It was great to go to the House of Commons and meet other people who, just like me, have been given a chance to change their lives thanks to the Youthbuild project, and organisations like Spencer who have gone out of their way to support it.

Julie Worman wants to let people know that the latest Your Voice meeting has had to be postponed. This has had to happen because of an unexpected meeting with clients and stakeholders on site. She apologises for any inconvenience this may cause, and will update you as soon as possible with a new date and time.

Extra time Don’t forget the clocks go back one hour this weekend. Sunday 28th at 2am

Quays to the future Young people who began to carve out their futures at the Spencer Blue Sky programme are now taking their life in entrepreneurship to the next level, thanks to the Prince’s Trust. The Trust will be at One Humber Quays to work with the young people on a variety of important key skills that they will need to set up their own businesses. Youth unemployment costs the UK economy £10m a day in lost productivity, while youth crime costs £1bn every year. The Trust addresses this by giving practical and financial support to the young people who need it most. They help develop key skills, confidence and motivation, enabling young people to move into work, education or training.

Nominations are open You should have recieved a letter over the weekend detailing the consultation process and the nomination procedures for our proposed re-organisation plan. The closing date for nominations is 29th October. If you want to be nominated, remember to let your colleagues know.

Team meets top politicians in Putney A leading politician has endorsed Spencer’s work to improve facilities for disabled passengers using Putney Station. Justine Greening and members of the local council visited the site to discuss the works and the improvements which will be made to the station – starting in Jan 2013. Spencer was called in to carry out the works after it was decided by Network Rail that substantial improvements to facilities, used by almost 10 million people each year were required. Justine Greening became the MP for Putney in 2005, and became the Minister for Transport in 2011. We explained to her, and members of Wandsworth Council, how our plan will mean the station will have a new glazed bridge which will be accessible by disabled commuters. There will also be three new lifts to improve accessibility, and the concourse will be extended by fourteen metres. Whilst the work is underway, the team will be installing a temporary bridge to keep disruption to a minimum.

Facelift In this landmark 20th issue of In Touch, we decided to give the publication a little refresh. We hope you like it. If you want something published: please contact Julie Worman. or via Skype csl.julie.worman

Sunday Politics at HQ!

SPENCER hosted a live politics show in the Penthouse this weekend, as the race to elect a new Police and Crime Commissioner for the region gets underway. Introduced by the BBC’s Tim Iredale, the show used the 3rd floor penthouse at One Humber Quays to host the debate about the future of policing in the Hull area, and what attributes the first publicly-voted commissioner will need to tackle crime and disorder. Amongst the six hopefuls were Lord John Prescott and Geoffrey Bloom. Bringing with them seemingly a full TV studio, the BBC transmitted, via a satellite truck, over 20 mins of live debate to the region.

Spencer In Touch - Issue 20  

In this issue we see working continuing at Wokingham and Wessex, BlueSky meets Iain Duncan Smith and staying on politics, we host the BBC's...

Spencer In Touch - Issue 20  

In this issue we see working continuing at Wokingham and Wessex, BlueSky meets Iain Duncan Smith and staying on politics, we host the BBC's...