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King’s Lynn electricity worker joins the 40-plus club



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A Lynn man has had his long service with the electricity industry recognised by his employer, UK Power Networks.

The company, which distributes electricity across the East of England, invites employees who have given 40 years of continuous service to join a special 40-plus club.

John Kellegher, 56, has done just that joining the Eastern Electricity Board as an apprentice in 1981 and working today as a lead field engineer, though he admits it could all have been very different had he taken an alternative career path four decades ago.

John Kellegher (centre) from Norfolk has achieved a long service award at UK Power Networks after 40 years in the industry. He received his accolade from Patrick Clarke, director of Network Operations at UK Power Networks (left) and Basil Scarsella, chief executive. Picture credit: UK Power Networks (53013336)
John Kellegher (centre) from Norfolk has achieved a long service award at UK Power Networks after 40 years in the industry. He received his accolade from Patrick Clarke, director of Network Operations at UK Power Networks (left) and Basil Scarsella, chief executive. Picture credit: UK Power Networks (53013336)

He said: "It started through doing some work experience when I was still at school in Luton.

The careers advisor at school arranged it, I enjoyed the few weeks I did, and from there I applied and got an apprenticeship.

"I was on £35 a week when I started which doesn’t feel like much now.

"I had decided I was interested in engineering, but not specifically electricity. I also applied at the same time to other major companies including Luton Airport and the RAF so I could have ended up doing 40 years somewhere entirely different.

"I started off as a fitter in Luton before moving to what was then the supplies and tariffs department.

"It was 1991 that I made the big move from Luton to King’s Lynn where I still live and work to this day.

"I already had two children at that time, it’s now three, and felt Norfolk was a good place to bring up a young family.

"I had a few different roles in Lynn and a brief spell commuting to Bury St Edmunds from here, but have been in my current role as a lead field engineer for well over a decade now.

"I keep going because I still enjoy it and ultimately because of the people. There are still people I know who I did my apprenticeship with, as well as Lynn colleagues I’ve known and built working relationships with over many years."

Among the highlights for John has been his son Liam joining the company and having the opportunity to work alongside him at times over the past decade as electricity has effectively become the family business.

John said: "One of the proudest aspects for me is that my eldest son Liam has gone on to work for the company, too, as a jointer and linesman.

"He has recently completed ten years himself and there are days we get to work together which is always enjoyable.

"It was his own decision to take this path, but I did point the way a little because I wanted him to know what a good company this is to work for and how a career like this can be a job for life if you work hard. I’m really pleased that he joined us.

"My other son Adam is in utilities at a water company while my daughter works at a vet, but I’ve six grandchildren now so there could yet be another generation on the way in future years."

Basil Scarsella, chief executive of UK Power Networks, said: "We take this opportunity to recognise the commitment and dedication of our longest-serving employees, who have served their local communities for decades.

"The last 18 months have been an unprecedented time and I am grateful to all of our staff for their key role in keeping power flowing and enabling people to go about their daily lives, while preparing the networks for an exciting low carbon future."

UK Power Networks has 464 employees with over 40 years of service. A total of 43 staff across the South East, London and East of England reached their 40th or 50th milestone this year.

In addition to career development for existing staff, UK Power Networks continues to run apprenticeships, including 21 new apprentices who joined the business in September.



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