Dave Chambers, logistics manager of WH & HM Young’s Leeds depot

Making sure WH & HM Young’s customers receive what they order, when they require it, is a far cry from Dave Chambers’ early career as a paratrooper.
After leaving the army, Chambers worked in the security industry before joining Key Lekkerland member AR Daunt in May 2001 as a vehicle loader, rising to become transport supervisor in October 2002.
When fellow Key Lekkerland member WH & HM Young bought AR Daunt a year later, he remained at the Nottingham depot for six months before moving to Leeds.
In the short time he’s been there, he has
presided over the test of a new IT system that plans distribution routes based on customers’ postcodes.
Covering a business stretching from Sheffield to Newcastle and supervising a secondary depot serving towns such as Nottingham, Birmingham and Leicester demands long hours, says Chambers. “I commute by car from Nottingham and arrive at Leeds at about 5.30am. I leave around 6pm, but the rush hour is a positive thing. It gives me thinking time.”
From the sound of things, he needs it. From the moment he arrives on the Monday, he says he’s up to his eyeballs in meetings. “I meet department heads to tackle warehouse, transport and IT issues, uncovering problems from the previous week and planning for the week ahead.”
And he says he has to take the week a day at a time: “We could be walking into a light day or facing a situation where six vehicles can’t start and customers are going berserk.”
Life is even more hectic at Christmas. “Logistically, Christmas causes problems. It’s the limited amount of space goods have and the distance they have to travel.”
As soon as Christmas finishes, the depot is gearing up for Easter, says Chambers, with retailers demanding stocks of Easter eggs earlier and earlier. Three loading bays are being added to the depot to cope with peak demand.