Finalists and Jan Ward CBE 2

A student on placement at Fisher German’s Ashby office has presented at the regional finals of a long-standing industry competition. Josh Burrows has taken part in this year’s Sir John Parker Competition, run by the Midlands Professional Development Network (PDN) of the Pipeline Industries Guild (PIG).

The contest was entered by young professionals from across the pipeline industry, and Josh was one of four participants selected to present at the regional finals held at Cadent Gas’s Coventry office.

Josh gave his presentation ‘Managing utility operator’s pipelines when low cover becomes an issue in agricultural land’ in front of a host of industry professionals.

It was based on the work he has undertaken at Fisher German and the experience he has gained during his placement.

Josh said: “It was excellent to take part in the competition and give a presentation based around my work within the sector to industry professionals. I was able to explore the issues around pipelines experiencing low cover and give three scenarios land agents would advise using when rectifying these issues.

Taking part in the competition gave me an opportunity to reflect on my placement and the knowledge I have built while at Fisher German. It has also made me realise how much I enjoy working in utility surveying. Everyone at Fisher German has been incredibly supportive throughout my placement and I am thoroughly enjoying my time at the firm.

Josh, who is from Lancashire, joined our Ashby Utilities team in July last year. He is currently studying Rural Land Management at Harper Adams University and will r.eturn for his final year in September following his placement.

He was up against Elizabeth Drabble, of Cadent Gas; Elisha Walters, from Severn Trent; and Kathryn Thomas, of DNVGL in the competition.

The presentations were judged by Corrotherm International chief executive Jan Ward CBE, former PIG national chair Bob Murray and PIG Midlands chair Kate Lazenby who selected Kathryn as the winner.

She was awarded the Sir John Parker Competition trophy, £500 and a place in the national final taking place at the Guild Conference.

Senior Associate Jenny Salt, a planner at Fisher German specialising in renewables and utilities, is the chair of the Midlands PDN and said that each of the finalists gave an interesting insight into different areas within the industry.

She said: “We had a record number of synopsis entries which were whittled down to just four finalists. All of them gave interesting presentations, each covering different angles relevant to their work including gas, land, water and science. It is extremely encouraging to see young professionals progressing in their careers in such diverse areas of the industry.

“The judges found it very difficult to select a winner and all the finalists should be incredibly proud of themselves. We wish Kathryn the best of luck in the national final. We would also like to thank our guest speaker Jan Ward for her inspirational talk about her career and personal journey which demonstrated that hard work, perseverance and a bit of luck are the secrets to success.”

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