Ian Cobby – 40 Years’ Service in the Brick Industry

January 19, 2017

In today’s fast paced culture, it is common to see employees switch in and out of different occupations, however at Michelmersh it is quite common to see devoted craftsmen who have consistently contributed decades of their lives to our brick making process. It’s refreshing to know there are still some who see longevity and loyalty as key and we would like to show our gratitude to Ian who has contributed the last 40 years in the brick industry with us.

He joined Freshfield Lane Brickworks on the 10th January 1977 at the age of 22, after deciding a career in banking was not for him. Ian started out in the brick shed working on the brick making Berry machines which were currently being used at that time, helping make and produce the locally recognised and respected FLB brick. Back in 1977 Freshfield Lane were currently producing 9 million bricks a year. After 15 years of working inside the brick shed, he moved outside and decided to try his hand at ‘Crowding’. (This role requires employees to ‘set’ dried green bricks in clamps ready for firing).

In 1992 after a decision by the Directors to completely over haul and upgrade the brick making machines, Ian moved back into the brick shed where he worked for a further 9 years on the machines. In 2001 he was given the opportunity to travel around the Southern part of the UK assisting with all areas of Quality Assurance, attending sites and helping or advising on any issues relating to quality control.

In 2003 Ian changed roles again to be based on site in Danehill and was then made supervisor of the brick shed team. In 2010 Freshfield Lane became part of Michelmersh. Now in 2017 in his 40th year with the company, Ian is still in the brick shed and continues to support and manage the brickmaking team in achieving the sites now expanded target of 35 million bricks a year!

Ian is pictured above with Mick Brophy, Michelmersh’s Southern Operations Director.

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