A Cracking Way to Lend a Hand
Mark Shaw is a Driver Training Manager for FedEx UK Limited and is based in Stoke-on-Trent, UK. For the last two months, he and his colleagues have transported 101 oversized designer Easter eggs across the nation in support of Action for Children's Big Egg Hunt 2013.
When I first heard that FedEx had been named the official carrier of the Action for Children Big Egg Hunt 2013 my first thought was: how can I get involved? I've worked with FedEx for over 18 years and, as a Driver Training Manager, I was keen to help in any way I could and a good opportunity to show our drivers we can walk the walk and not just talk the talk when it comes to driving large vehicles around the country. The Big Egg Hunt is an annual fundraising spectacular which sees 101 giant decorated eggs arrive in Birmingham, Glasgow, Liverpool, London and Manchester as part of the world's biggest Easter egg hunt.
As a team, we've been involved in similar charitable efforts in the past but never on this scale. Our task was to safely transport these oversized designer eggs across the UK, from city to city, in the run up to Easter and distribute them for members of the public to find.
On my journeys between these five cities and before my return to London, I was joined by my colleagues David Horton, Malcolm Temple and Colin Wynne who enabled about 5,000 miles to be covered.
We were using a state-of-the-art double-decker articulated lorry which turned out to be the perfect fit for the job, supported with a conventional single deck trailer. The double decker has an internal length moving deck allowing both levels to be filled, helping reduce mileage and fuel used.
There was a great deal of interest from the public along the way. Curious onlookers greeted us wherever we went. We usually loaded and unloaded at night when there were less people around but that didn't stop passers-by approaching to ask what we were doing and taking pictures of themselves with the eggs.
We've certainly had quite a few interesting moments on the road – notably when a moving bollard failed to live up to its name and almost trapped us in Liverpool city centre overnight. Fortunately, we were able to get it lowered, although not until 1 a.m., which just added to the excitement.
Whilst in Glasgow a young Spanish lady asked me if they were the same eggs she had seen in London? Yes! I said how did you know that? It turned out she was on holiday and was touring the major cities in England and had seen them on the first day in Covent Garden, London.
FedEx has supported Action for Children for three years. All in all this has been an incredibly rewarding experience and a great way to illustrate how FedEx is involved in charitable campaigns and the difference we can make as individuals. It's been a successful journey with Action for Children and hopefully won't be our last.
For more information on the FedEx involvement in The Big Egg Hunt, go to http://www.thebigegghunt.co.uk/fedex