Liam Muldoon tells Access how Wernick keeps on top of its game with supplying to some of the biggest events around the country
Tell us about Wernick Group
At Wernick Events we supply a range of temporary portable buildings, including offices, ticket booths, storage, and of course, toilets and showers. We o er our clients a full service package, from before the first visitor arrives to well after the last one goes home. We advise clients on how best to meet their requirements, and design a solution based on that conversation. We may need to conduct surveys to ensure the site is suitable, and then we deliver and install the units, including connection to services. For things like toilets, we’ll also manage waste disposal and cleaning during the event. Finally, we arrange for collection of units at the end of the event.
What kind of events do you work for?
This year we’re supplying over 800 events. Our favourites don’t depend on the type of event so much as the relationship we have with the organiser. We think of ourselves as collaborators with these events, rather than just their suppliers, and we love working with anyone who we can have that collaborative relationship with, regardless of event size. We can take total responsibility for our products throughout the event, giving our clients less to worry about and delivering better outcomes for everyone.
What is the largest-scale job you’ve worked on?
We have a few regular clients that always need large set-ups. While we have a presence on nearly every major event in the UK, the Isle of Wight Festival has used us as its sole supplier for the last ten years. The AEG Hyde Park summer concerts also relies on us to provide all the portable accommodation on site. Jalsa Salana, an annual Muslim gathering that takes place in Hampshire and attracts tens of thousands of people. All of these clients will each take about 200 units, if not more, in a combination of cabins, toilets and showers.
That’s not to say we couldn’t go bigger.
An advantage of being part of the Wernick Group is having the financial backing available to take on the really large events. If a client approached us with a need for hundreds and hundreds of units, we’re in a position that we could provide them.
What does 2017 hold for Wernick Group?
We’re hoping to have our busiest year ever in 2017. We’ve already supplied some big name events like the Cheltenham Festival, Aintree Grand National, and the London Marathon as well as a host of smaller events. We’ve seen a steady growth in our client base for a number of years now, so we have plenty of projects in the pipeline for this season, and that was before the General Election was called. It seems like our phones haven’t stopped ringing since; we’re being contacted by Local Authorities up and down the country asking us to provide temporary polling booths as we did for the previous election. Jobs like that make sure we’re always busy, even in the run up to festival season.
What are the challenges you are often faced with in your sector?
The weather. By the nature of the industry you’re always working to tight deadlines, but turning up on-site to find it’s a bog really puts the pressure on. We always find a way to make it work.
For Wernick in particular, maintaining a dedicated events fleet can be a challenge. In such a seasonal business it can be challenging to maintain utilisation rates during the winter. That said, we firmly believe that this approach is of enormous benefit to clients. No one wants a unit that’s just come o a construction site turning up at their event held at a stately home.
What does the future hold for your sector?
Thee sector in general is very buoyant and it is experiencing a period of growth at the moment. In particular a lot of smaller music festivals have popped up in recent years, and that trend appears to be continuing. A good measure of our confidence in the sector is the £1.2 million we’ve invested this year, with an increase to our fleet and our staffing levels.