In with the new

2/1/2023 10:25:00 AM
Plant Manager Steve Spence explains how they take changes in their stride on the Blackpool production line.

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There is a widely held belief that people don’t like change. But at Dennis Eagle, it happens all the time … changes in the way we work, new ways of doing things, and the development of products. Yet even in this constantly evolving environment, many staff have remained with us for a long time. Is it somehow in our DNA that we – the people who work here – actually embrace change?

Take Steve Spence, our Plant Manager at Blackpool where all our cabs are made. He’s been in the truck business for 35 years – 17 years with Dennis Eagle having joined from Leyland Motors. You may think there’s not much he doesn’t know about making cabs, but he’ll disagree; he’ll tell you he’s learning all the time.


“We’re producing more cabs a week now than we were a couple of years ago. And the way we’ve achieved that is through finding efficiencies. The headcount is up too but there are always changes to be made that help us do things better.

“The goal, of course, is to be better than the rest. But these efficiencies are not just aimed at improving productivity. They are about other things too, including our sustainability. We look at emissions, energy consumption, time, the health and well-being of staff, their diversity and their skill sets.

“We’ve also had many trainees coming through their apprenticeships and joining the workforce – and they do really well.


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“I suppose when you work in manufacturing and engineering, you get used to developments happening all the time, so perhaps it’s something we adapt to quite easily.

“The cabs themselves are always evolving so there’s a steady stream of improvements in the build and the design to implement.

The Elite+ has become hugely popular with our UK customers since its launch last year. Blackpool now turns out more Elite+ cabs than any other product.


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“We started building the Elite+ in earnest at the beginning of 2022 but the development took place over a couple of years prior to that,” added Steve.

“We have a part to play in any new developments to cabs. Once everyone’s happy with the changes made, our role is to get them into the production line and find those efficiencies. We’re constantly looking at all our products - we don’t stand still. Like our production line, we keep moving.”