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Briggs Defence staff and suppliers celebrate ‘Yellow Fleet’ milestone

2/19/2018 12:00:00 AM by Kathryn Hyde

The home of the Chelsea pensioners proved a stunning setting for an event recognising the contribution made by employees and suppliers to the success of a longstanding contract between Briggs Defence and the Ministry of Defence (MOD).

The event at the Royal Hospital Chelsea celebrated the success of the Defence Mechanical Handling (DMHE) contract that’s seen the ‘Yellow Fleet’ mark its 20th anniversary.  

A division of asset management and engineering services provider Briggs Equipment, Briggs Defence welcomed 130 guests to the state apartments at the hospital on January 31.

Briggs Defence director, Gary Clements, said: “All of us at Briggs are very proud to deliver the prestigious DMHE contract. It is far from easy to manage, but the support we get on a daily basis from our employees and business partners means we’ve been able to provide a world class service throughout our 20-year involvement with the Ministry of Defence. 

“Using this as a platform for future service delivery, we very much look forward to supporting our Armed Forces for the next 20 years and beyond.”

Underlining Briggs Defence’s role as a trusted Ministry of Defence (MOD) partner, the event was an opportunity for the company to pay tribute to key members of its hard working team and thank business partners for their high standards of service and dedicated support over the years.

Long Service Awards were presented to engineers Mark Murray and Iain Beattie, whose involvement dates back to the original Pathfinder contract, and Julie Bayliss, who was commended for her ability to ship equipment around the world at short notice.

Special Recognition Awards were presented by Brig Steve Shirley (RLC) to Phil Chambers and Stuart Gunn in recognition of their support and dedication over the last 20 years since the start of the DHME contract.

Charity work and sponsorship have been key elements of Briggs Defence’s commitment to the MOD throughout the 20 years of the ‘Yellow Fleet’, with Officers’ Mess dinners raising in excess of £100,000 for military charities. The anniversary celebrations were brought to a fitting conclusion with a donation of £10,000 to the Royal Hospital Chelsea, a retirement and nursing home for some 300 British Army veterans, which is reliant on donations to cover the day-to-day cost of care and accommodation. Briggs presented a cheque for £5,000 and a further £5,000 was raised during the event from its key suppliers that have supported the contract.

Briggs Defence’s relationship with the MOD began in 1997 with Barloworld Handling and the Pathfinder contract.  In 2000 the Tri-Service Materials Handling Service (TSMHS) was signed, ushering in the transition from an owned to a leased fleet under a Private Finance Initiative (PFI).  This was completed in 2002 with the signing of the Defence Storage and Distribution (DSDA) /Defence Munitions (DM) contract – now known as Logistics and Commodities Services (LCS) – and the Defence Munitions areas of the MOD. 

The prestigious DMHE contract signed in 2013 saw the amalgamation of previous contracts to deliver the MOD’s current end-to-end materials handling capability. Briggs Defence has also supported MOD outsourcing by providing continuity of service to former LCS, Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) and Defence Support Group (DSG) activities.

Today, Briggs Defence is responsible for 2,500+ MOD assets, including forklift trucks, plant vehicles, trailers, tow tractors, container handlers and agricultural tractors, across 289 locations in 13 countries around the world.