Norse expands with new fencing and school travel contracts

PUBLISHED: 17:45 29 March 2011

New school transport contracts and the formation of a fencing division have boosted prospects at commercial services group Norse.

Norwich-based Norse, a company wholly owned by Norfolk County Council, has bolstered its position in the public transport sector after securing school travel contracts worth almost £300,000 with the local authority.

The company will transport students with special needs and challenging behaviours to special schools in the Norwich area under the work.

The deal comes days after Norse announced a new fencing venture, called Norse Fencing, set up after infrastructure services firm May Gurney axed its fencing division earlier in the year.

Norse Group, one of the region’s biggest employers with about 5,000 staff, provides a range of facilities, property and waste services to public and private sector customers through subsidiaries Norse, NPS Property Consultants and NEWS.

Group turnover last year was in excess of £150m.

The school transport contracts, which cover 15 routes and last from three to five years, will see the company convey students by wheelchair-accessible minibuses, with drivers and passenger assistants undertaking emergency aid training and Passenger Assistant Training Scheme (PATS) courses.

Sales director Geoff Tucker said: “This is another significant win for the transport division of Norse, and consolidates our position as one of the largest providers of transport services in Norfolk.”

The company also runs a number of Norwich Park and Ride bus routes for Norfolk County Council.

The Norse Fencing venture has also seen the firm take on two staff who previously worked on similar roles at May Gurney.

Robin Tillotson has been appointed fencing manager and Brian Heeles fencing estimator, with both based in the Norse Grounds Division offices at Fifers Lane, Norwich.

Norse Commercial Director Peter Negri said May Gurney’s decision to close its fencing operation “will leave a gap in the market which Norse, with its long established grounds division, is ideally positioned to fill.”

Last month Norse announced a new healthcare company, Norse Care, which will take over the management and staffing of residential care in Norfolk on April 1, previously the responsibility of the county council.

The new company will take over the roles at 26 homes and 13 homes with care and will take on more than 1,700 staff currently employed by the local authority.

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