HAVING worked in health and safety for over 23 years, I joined Ceredigion County Council 15 years ago from the local health board, writes Keith Holmes, the council’s corporate health and safety manager.
I manage a team of four people within the council’s corporate health and safety unit, and we cover topics like manual handling, asbestos removal, infection control, occupational health, safety in schools as well as providing fire and health and safety training.
I moved from Neath in 1994 and left a job as an engineer in the chemical works with BP in Baglan Bay to start a career within the healthcare sector in rural Ceredigion.
This meant a complete change of lifestyle and career.
It was the right thing for me and it was a good move, and I have never looked back.
When I applied for the job, the council was setting up a new unit and offered a unique set up that really appealed to me.
The mix of training and practical working was a nice change, it wasn’t very office based, which suited me and I still love the practical side of my role to this day.
The role is very diverse and means that I can be working on different topics every day, from providing manual handling training, removing asbestos or the next day I could be working with schools to help provide advice and support for their health and safety requirements.
I like to think that I am a bit of a manual handling expert, and an important part of my role is to offer advice and support when it comes to this subject.
Some people might think that this is a tedious subject, but I believe it’s an important skill to learn and understand and do it right.
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