Getting Work in Swansea area?

Hi all,

Does anyone have any experience of finding HGV work in the Swansea or West Wales area? I’m currently exploring the idea of moving into the industry, and although I fully expect and understand the first 2 years to be relatively low paid and hard to find regular work, I’m worried that living in the area that I do (West Wales) may be particularly difficult to find work. I am willing to focus on the nearest city to me, Swansea, as my area is very rural. Though there are some large milk tankers firms about.

Thanks in advance

I’m a bit further west than you.

There is work about but you have to search a bit harder.

Wages are lower than many areas of the UK but that is across all industries so say in comparison to factory or retail work you will still be considered quite well paid for Wales.

What sort of work do you want and I’ll throw some names of firms to contact out.

Thanks mate I appreciate this. I’m actually pretty far west - Cardigan bay area, prob not too far from your area. Good to hear you find work.

I’m not going to be fussy to start with, long term I’m interested in Tramping, though not sure how I’d get on with that with having a family etc…

I understand living out here the rates of pay are typically lower, mainly want to get 2 years under my belt first and see what my options are from there onwards.

Be great if you can recommend any companies.

Thanks again

Frenni at Crymych springs to mind if your from Cardigan.

Mansel Davies are the obvious firm with a variety of work.

Not sure but Hall and Roche I think still have a yard in Goodwick.

Peter Harding somewhere near Fishguard.

Moving further afield

Gregory’s at Haverfordwest

I think Bibby might run the milk at Haverfordwest (not my thing so not sure)

Wynnstay - Carmarthen

BOCM - Carmarthen

Wincanton at Cross Hands (milk)

NR Evans also Cross Hands.

Taffbarts (copyright Reef) otherwise known as Owens - Llanelli and every major town heading east.

I can give you some more if you want but it’s getting further away from home.

Loads of small tipper firms and as you already know most builders merchants will have a wagon.

Fair few small firms with a couple of wagons (my choice of work) doing anything from fridges to hay/straw.

It is a bit of a funny place to find work but it is there.

Others may correct me but a lot of jobs (the good ones) here are word of mouth. I got mine through a friend of someone who works with my wife who knew someone who was looking.

It’s just that sort of place.

I’ll just add - this is personal opinion btw.

I came to the area with licenses and experience.

If I was here and starting I’d get class 1 as quick as possible - a higher proportion of work here is artics I think compared to other areas of UK.

Again I emphasise that’s my opinion, I’m not telling you to spend any money on getting licenses that may take a while to start paying for themselves.

I quite like my job but it can be a thankless industry with daft hours.

Just don’t compare your wages to say someone in Daventry. It will make you cry!

Anything you need to ask feel free - loads of people on here who know far more than me and who have lived and worked in this neck of the woods for a fair bit.

That’s excellent mate, thank you so much!

I’m actually very near to New Quay, not quite as far down as Cardigan.

Have you ever had any dealings with Charles Footman company near Carmarthen? They seem to be pretty big in the area?

Class 1 and Artics is where I want to be, so that’s good to hear. Totally understand what you mean about the area and wages. We moved here from the southeast around 10 years ago, and it’s totally different when it comes to wages and industries you can work in.

Charles Footman - about 10 mins from my house!!

Seems to be a mix of flatbed work (timber/hay/machinery), curtainsider and I’m pretty sure he does livestock.

A fairly big yard with a fair few trucks so I’d say you have a chance without waiting for “dead mans” shoes.

Never had any dealings personally as I do fridges so mine and his drivers paths never cross but from conversations with people, and this is a “my mate told me…” sort of thing, it’s an old fashioned decent firm.

I know they get everywhere in the uk as I’ve passed them up near Aberdeen, London and Bodmin.

If I wasn’t happy where I am I’d be knocking on Adrian Poole’s (Tegryn/near Crymych) who runs a handful on Fridges but and this is far from a dig - positions are rare and he can pick and choose who he wants. A friend of mine has just gone to them and he has no regrets whatsoever. Money’s bob on, works top drawer and the trucks are a scania fan boys ■■■■■■■■■! You will work hard though.

Might be worth showing your face if that floats your boat.

There is a firm near Newport, between Newquay and Fishguard, no idea of a name but their yard is on the left as you head south - pretty sure it’s flat bed sort of stuff - maybe have a look there.

Couple of others - and these are the closest I think to you - DJ Thomas, Llanarth and Jenkins at Felinfach both curtainside work.

10 mins! wow that is close! lol :slight_smile: - Yes they look a solid old school company.

Great to hear there are lots of options. Thanks again mate

I almost took my training a couple of years ago when I was made redundant, but a careers Wales guy told me that Mansell Davies basically pay minimum wage, which put me off at the time. Not sure how true it is, as you know they are a common site on the roads around this way, and are a big, long established company. They do seem to have a monopoly in the area for milk wagons though… maybe that’s how they screw the wages down for new drivers (if true)

I understand that just starting out in the biz, coupled with living in this area - wages are never going to be like you say in the midlands etc, but thought you’d get a bit more than minimum wage, hence I’m thinking firms closer to Swansea offer a better hourly rate? But then you’re spending more time and money traveling etc…

Like I say, for the first 2 years I’m really just looking to build my knowledge and experience, and take it from there.

Seems to be a sort of unwritten rule regarding wages - the major names all pay near enough the same give or take a bit. Search a bit and you will find the better paying roles - but you will have competition when applying unless you know the firm and they know you.

I’ve been told the same for Mansel Davies as you were.

Saying that - they are a very stable firm - some like Owens will drop you like a stone when it goes quiet whereas to be fair - Mansel Davies seem to keep their drivers for decades - and if it’s milk trunking it’s apparently a doddle once you get the hang of using the tank.

You will need to weigh it up against your commute/home life, like you said.

If you have a decent standard of life in your current work - I’d be sorely tempted to think hard if it’s what you want.

Crack on if it really is and I’ll help where I can.