Russ Jones of Selby was one of the miners from Kellingley Colliery featured in BBC1’s
two part documentary; The Last Miners, following the lives of workers in the run-up to its closure and is now enjoying a new career with us at JCT600.
Last night’s programme (21 November) followed the five-week countdown to the last ever shift at the North Yorkshire mine last December which marked the end of British deep coal mining. However, for the 50 year old shift manager who lives in the village of Riccall with his wife Tracey and their two teenage children, the closure of the mine has led to new beginnings.
In January 2016, Russ, who had worked at the colliery for 34 years, started a new part time job on a casual basis as a driver based at Mercedes-Benz York delivering vehicles around the UK for our fleet operation. In June, he accepted a permanent full-time position and, after a successful year with us, Russ has now been promoted to trainee account manager for the fleet department at Mercedes-Benz York
“Having known Russ for many years, I was saddened when I heard the mine was closing and that he would be losing his job,” comments Neill Richards, fleet sales director. “It’s incredibly hard to have to change careers after over 30 years, but I knew Russ was a reliable, hard working guy who would be an asset to any business. As we had a temporary position for a driver, I was happy to help.
“Over the last 12 months, Russ has done a sterling job and has now been given a well-earned promotion. While the story of the closure of the colliery is a poignant one, I hope that Russ’ new career demonstrates that there are always opportunities with forward-looking companies who are prepared to invest in re-training hard working people with potential.”
Russ comments: “Having worked for the same company for so long, it was really daunting to have to start again, but the people at JCT600 have been brilliant. I had to forge new relationships and learn about a completely different industry, but it’s all about doing the best you can.
“I was really lucky to get this opportunity and JCT600 have supported me all the way along. I’ve had lots of help and on-the-job training, everyone’s really friendly and I’m learning all the time.”
Added: 22 November 2016