Fortec Distribution Network licensees were rewarded for a year of outstanding achievements in the company’s prestigious Annual Awards Ceremony.

The event, at the Carden Park Hotel near Chester, was attended by representatives from the 65-strong network of licensees.

The coveted Depot of the Year Award was won by Ipswich-based IP Pallets. The company is only the second in the history of the Fortec awards to win the accolade two years running.

Licensees Alan Davie & Son, based in Forfar, and Mitchell Storage and Distribution (MSD), in Leicester, were joint runners up. This year also saw the presentation of the second Rod Abrahams Award, in memory of Fortec’s former Managing Director who died from cancer in September 2009.

The award is presented to licensees in recognition of their willingness to go the extra mile. This year’s award was jointly won by Glasgow-based M&H Logistics and Alan Davie & Son. Both were recognised for their heroic efforts during the extreme winter weather which brought much of the UK to a standstill between November and January.

M&H Logistics opened a new temporary depot in Edinburgh, to ensure the best possible service during the snow, and offered their Glasgow office for use as accommodation by stranded staff.

Alan Davie & Son were officially thanked by Tayside Police for helping to clear a traffic jam, in which several lorries became stuck on a hill, causing long tailbacks.

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MSD also picked up the award for the International Depot of the Year. It was the second year running the company won the award, in recognition of the number of international consignments handled on behalf of Fortec’s European network.

Preston-based Ainsworth & Martin was voted Best Newcomer. The company was highlighted for embracing the Fortec brand, delivering exceptional volumes and a first class service to customers.

Fortec Birmingham, opened just six months ago, was runner-up Best Newcomer.

The Commercial Contribution to the Network award was won by Team C Logistics for not only consistently inputting high quality volume and freight but also adopting a company ethos synonymous with that of the Fortec brand. Joint runners up were Wyvern Cargo and Devereux Developments.

Fortec also rewarded the Network’s ‘Unsung Heroes’ – individuals within Fortec and its licensees who regularly go the extra mile. This year’s winners were Gareth Howes and Kerry Lightfoot, both based at Fortec, Louise Struthers of M&H Logistics, Noelia de Jesus, of TJL Transport, in Mitcham, Surrey, and Debbie Goodman, of W L Vallance, in Newton Abbot, Devon.

Neil Hodgson, Fortec’s Managing Director, said: “Congratulations to all our winners. They have proven time and time again they operate with the Fortec ethos – quality, not quantity. The Fortec brand is synonymous with quality of delivery service, quality of management information and quality of value added service. And it is the loyalty of our licensees that helps us achieve this.”

Indeed it is a philosophy which has paid dividends. In 2010 Fortec saw its traffic volumes increase by 19 per cent, building on the success of 2009 when volumes increased by 11 per cent on the year before.

But not a company to rest on its laurels, it is already continuously looking at further ways to enhance and improve its operation. In the past six months Fortec has introduced a new fleet of Still hybrid forklifts which have reduced emissions by over 50 per cent and have helped create a more productive environment through closer monitoring of staff. Additionally Fortec has stopped using agency staff, meaning forklift drivers have more of a sense of ownership over the brand. Employees are also trained in various functions, so all roles are adequately covered in cases of absence or sickness.

And not forgetting its corporate responsibility, Neil Hodgson took the opportunity at the Awards to announce plans to support the all-new Zoe’s Place baby hospice in Coventry over the next 12 months. The news was welcomed by Fortec licensees, who helped kickstart the fundraising by donating £3,000 on the night.

Neil said: “Well done to all licensees who gave so generously at the ceremony. No-one can fail to be moved by the strength and courage of the children under the care of Zoe’s at its other branches in Liverpool and Middlesborough. Fortec is honoured to be able to support the new hospice in whatever way it can, for the benefit of families across the Midlands.”

Fortec Distribution Network

Tel: 0845 0750 620

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