Award recognises the UK’s top land-based engineering technicians for 2021

The Land-based Education and Training Committee (LE-TEC Ltd) has announced the winners of its Technicians For 2021 competition, designed to find and celebrate the UK’s best technicians in the land-based engineering sector.

Laura Bassnet’s video won first prize; judges described her as “a great example of a professional, dynamic person”.

Entrants to this year’s competition were asked to submit a short video explaining three aspects of themselves: who they were, what inspired them to become a land-based technician and why they enjoy their day-to-day job so much.

As an industry collaboration, the LE-TEC Ltd judging panel consisted of the Institution of Agricultural Engineers (IAgrE), British Agricultural and Garden Machinery Association (BAGMA) and the Agricultural Engineers Association (AEA).

Aiming to highlight the skills and passion for the sector, the judges were overwhelmed by the content of some superb entries received, and after much deliberation they settled on a top three: Laura Bassnet in first place, Lauren Savage in second and Chris Laidler in third.

Lauren Savage won second place.

All three videos display incredible passion for their work and just how rewarding a career in land-based engineering can be.

Ruth Bailey, CEO of the AEA explains the initiative behind the competition: “Recruitment for us, as within many industries, has been difficult in recent years, and our industry is an absolute gem but one that is little-known outside of industry circles. These three winners will be fantastic champions for our industry, showcasing the major talent and ambition that is represented throughout the sector. We cannot wait to work with them further.”

Charles Nicklin, CEO of IAgrE continues: “Our industry is such a great place to work; we are surrounded by sophisticated highly productive machinery enabling customers to run their operations efficiently. Service backup and product support are essential elements of this, and that needs top quality professional technicians performing these roles. The top three technicians we have selected are fantastic examples of people working in our exciting industry and I wish them well in their careers.”

Keith Christian, director of BAGMA adds: “With around 48 per cent of dealer staff employed in the technical side of the industry, the wealth of experience, level of professionalism and technical ability that technicians offer to UK users of equipment in the land-based sector, is on a par with all other engineering-based industries in the UK.”

The winners each received a range of prizes:

1st Place: Laura Bassnet – Winner of both a Stanley FATMAX Technicians Suitcase provided by Toolbank and a Multi-day training course provided by AP Air Ltd – Watch Laura’s video
2nd Place: Lauren Savage – Winner of Sealey Tools 100pc Mechanics Tool Kit kindly donated by Kubota UK Watch Lauren’s video
3rd Place: Chris Laidler – Winner of a Makita Cordless Impact Drill – Watch Chris’ video

Chris Laidler came in third place.

Charles Nicklin remarks on Laura’s winning video: “A great example of a professional, dynamic person embarking on a career in our industry. Her personable confident approach will be a great asset to her employer in providing a professional customer service.”

Ruth Bailey adds: “All the judges felt that the entrants had a great story to tell and told it with real passion and sincerity. The judges were looking for several things from the video submissions: how someone started their career; what type of equipment they were working with; what excited them about their job and how the candidate had either progressed or could see themselves progressing. They were looking for how they presented themselves, how they related with the audience and how their style could engage with an audience that LE-TEC is looking to capture. All three of our winners were able to deliver on this.”

Competition winner Laura states: “I am delighted to have been acknowledged as an upcoming technician in this progressive industry. It just goes to show with the right leadership and opportunities presented, you can turn your ambitions into a career.”

Keith Christian concludes: “As an industry collaboration, LE-TEC is looking to tackle one of the biggest current issues the agricultural and outdoor power equipment sectors face today: that of skills. The training and recruitment of youngsters for our industry, particularly in respect of attracting young talent into our manufacturing and retail base, is ever more critical.

“As an industry, we face a huge crisis in the skills gap if we do not start to look more pragmatically about enticing a new intake of recruits and then genuinely offering them a progressive career path which recognises skills and competence levels within the technicians’ and customer service-related roles.”

LE-TEC hope to run this competition on an annual basis, so if you missed out this time, there could be a second chance. For further information, please contact AEA’s digital media & marketing specialist, Gareth Ford via or on 01773 207607.



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