Lawrence David said “goodbye” to one of its longest serving employees on Monday.
Steve Colbert joined Lawrence David at 18 as a welder, but, “…there wasn’t much welding in the beginning. We used to make Chassis Insulated Kits and send them out to another company to be constructed. About a year later, we started building our own bodies and then it took off from there.”
Steve has been with Lawrence David for 45 years and has seen the business grow from humble beginnings in a Nissen Hut, into one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of commercial trailers and rigid bodies.
He witnessed the construction of the first trailer, built from welded radiator panels and although he doesn’t remember exactly what happened, “…the person welding them on to the trailers left and I thought, ‘I could do that’, so I did - and I never looked back.”
“Obviously, at the time we welded everything on to the trailers. We’d built one with a Pillarless roof and I remember thinking, ‘Well, it’s got no pillars… How is it going to work?’ I think they called it Trac-cess 3000. Then they came out and said about this ‘All Bolted Construction’ and that was an eye-opener.
“Imagine, you’ve been welding half your life and then someone comes and says, we’re going to bolt all of this together now. That changed everything – they were right to do it, it was so innovative.”
A lot has changed since the first trailers rolled off the production line, but, Steve says three things have remained consistent over the years:
“For me, Lawrence David - certainly in the early days, was a family. We were a small company, you knew everybody. Although the business has grown, it still feels like a family.
“Second: you always did the best you could. I’ve always felt that if a job was worth doing, you ought to do it well. You get a real sense of pride knowing you’ve made something quality.
“Thirdly, I’ve always been happy. What can I say, I’m still here. I’ve enjoyed my time here, seeing how the business has grown. I’ve always thought, that if I got into difficulties, the company would be there for me and that’s a good feeling.”
Lawrence David are grateful to Steve for his service and proud that he put his faith in us. We’re glad we put our faith in him! He’s agreed to stay on and continue working with us in our Warranty Department, which we are very happy to announce.
Thank you, Steve.