National Pest Awards 2023 - Unsung Hero of the Year

News (United Kingdom)
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Nominations for the Syngenta sponsored National Pest Awards 2023 

Alex Wade, Wade Environmental

Alex Wade is a director of Wade Environmental.

He has been in the industry for many years, but under the banner of a manufacturer. Since venturing into the world of consultancy, he has helped set up a range of documents and information for the industry to utilise.

Mr Wade has produced a risk wheel to allow service companies to define and explain the various assessments based around pest risk and environmental impact.

He said being a finalist was “unexpected”.

“It really made my day to see that,” he said. “I don’t do any of these things that I do for accolades; I do them for a passion for the industry.”


Elaine Bliss, PestFix

Elaine Bliss is technical sales and trainer at PestFix, where she has worked for seven years having joined from an engineering background.

She joined the sales and admin team when PestFix was a smaller company and over time worked closely with customers to enhance her pest control knowledge.

“I’m always trying to go out with them whenever I can, to learn from customers,” she said.

She has the RPSH Level Three Award, gaining the qualification in 2020.

Ms Bliss has curated a wide range of training courses that are designed with practical content to better train new and improving members of the industry.


Karen Brett, John O’Conner (Grounds Maintenance)

Karen Brett is the pest control manager at John O’Conner (Grounds Maintenance), and joined eight years ago in an admin role, when the company did pest control for North Hertfordshire Council.

“I thought it was really interesting and it wasn’t something I’d come across before,” she said. “I got more and more interested in doing the admin and reading the reports.”

She passed the RSPH Level Two exam in November 2018, alongside her full-time job.

“We have a lot of trainees coming through, because trying to hire Level Two trained people is just a nightmare,” she said. “We do a lot of work with onboarding via the British Pest Control Association.

“I would like to do my Level Three eventually. I have put my heart and soul into pest control and I love my job.”


Paul Hart, Rokill

Paul Hart is technical support technician at Rokill, with a biology background.

His current role involves looking after big sites and maintaining them, and introducing new technicians, all whilst keeping clients happy.

Mr Hart said a recent big job concerned a complex rat problem at an agri merchant’s business in Devon.

“Rats were living in the double skimmed ceiling of a warehouse area and coming in through the footings – we had to proof 80 metres by 30 metres,” he said.

He couldn’t believe it when he was told that he’s a finalist.

“After 20-odd years in the business, it’s nice to be recognised that what I do is worthwhile,” he said.