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IHE attends Traffex/Parkex 22
- Thursday July 21, 2022
The IHE was excited to return to the long-standing Traffex/Parkex event at Birmingham’s NEC in June. The three-day event was back in person after the pandemic and it was great to see so many of our fellow organisations there.
Day one saw CEO Steve Spender and (then) senior vice president Martin Polland welcome Baroness Vere to the IHE stand – she was being given a tour of the event by our incoming junior vice president, Darren Capes.
Mr Spender commented: ‘It was really good to get to the opportunity to briefly speak to Baroness Vere and be able to discuss where the IHE believe we could support the Government, and the sector, in meeting the challenges the highway sector is facing in terms of the skills shortage and the ever growing reliance on improving technology.’
Day two saw junior vice president Katharine Kelly and incoming junior vice president Darren Capes in the Highways Theatre, participating in a panel discussion on ‘Filling the skills gap’ – bringing new talent and diversity into the roads sector and developing a broader skills pipeline.
They enjoyed a lively discussion with Deborah Sims (CIHT president) and Sarah Bryan (Milestone HR director), grappling with the dilemma of inappropriate client behaviour, encouraging change within the workplace and sharing ideas for making neuro-divergent employees feel more included. Darren then went on to present another session on ‘Funding through the Transport Technology Forum’.
Day three gave us the chance to see some of our partner organisations in the form of Lyle Andrew of IAT and Paul Boss from RSTA lead a panel discussion on ‘Materials for road construction and maintenance’.
As the time came to pack up the stand (and hand out the few remaining IHE branded cupcakes, which were delicious!) the IHE team reflected on being back at such a high profile event.
Neil Levett, IHE executive board scrutineer, said: ‘It was great to be back at Traffex and to physically catch up with friends, colleagues and to meet new contacts. Having attended the event for over 25 years and personally been the event director of the Traffex series of events, I know exactly how hard the team will have worked behind the scenes to get the event organised and delivered.’
He added that it was ‘an enormous task trying to get the booths sold, the speakers to confirm and visitors getting used to venturing out again, during a pandemic’.
‘I am sure that 2023 will see Traffex back to its glorious best but, for 2022, huge congratulations to the team in getting Traffex back on the calendar… they did a great job!’