Those of us who work across 2gether’s five EKHUFT sites probably don’t give too much thought to the boilers that provide essential heating.
But Keith Stoneystreet, who is 2gether’s Head of Technical Solutions at K&C, Buckland, and the Royal Victoria knows how important they are.
Keith said: “The boilers that we use are essential to all hospitals – and the steam they produce is used in different ways, such as hot water heating, and heating hospital buildings,” and in some hospitals for sterilization.
And forget any comparison between your kitchen boilers and the ones used by hospitals. The hospital varieties tend to be more than three metres (10 feet) tall and five metres (15 feet) long and pack an enormous amount of energy when they burn gas.
“One of the four at K&C had long ago reached the end of its life,” said Keith “The cost for removal was quoted at a cost of £20,000.
One of Keith’s team, maintenance and engineering technician, Paul Bush, thought there might be an answer.
“Earlier this year, Paul suggested that the Estates team could do the job, in-house, with the support of the management team. So it became a project for everyone, and when labour became available we would work on cutting this boiler up bit by bit.”
Slowly, thanks to the persistence of Paul and his colleagues, the boiler slowly began to disappear, with the last piece dismantled at midday on 11 October.
“The most important factor for me,” said Keith, “is that every member of my team was involved.”
He added: “This included managers and team leaders, maintenance and engineering technicians and assistants, and even the caretaker and groundsman removing parts to the skip.”
He added: “The boiler’s removal was a great example of people getting behind a project and a marvellous team effort by all. And a special thank you goes to Paul who led the team through to completion of the job.”
Paul said: “Each and every one of us dedicated a little bit of time whenever we got the opportunity to do so. And bit by bit, piece by piece, we managed to dismantle the boiler – saving a great deal of money in the process.”
This process was helped with the added advantage of training for some of the team members who had never used a cutting torch before.
Managing Director of 2gether, Fin Murray said: “The work that the Estates team did was very impressive. It was a huge job that was of great service to the Trust.
“I congratulate each and every member of the team on a job well done.”