Valeting Team LeaderItís second time around for Mark, who left Southdowns in 2007 but came back in 2010 to re-join the valeting team. We must be getting something right!
Q How did you find yourself working for Southdowns again?
A In 2007, Mercedes made me an offer I couldnít refuse so I had been working for them until this summer but there wasnít much job security. As I liked working at Southdowns the first time, I was happy to come back when I heard there was a vacancy.
Q What does your job involve?
A As part of the valetting team, Iím responsible for cleaning the motorhome exteriors and windows. When youíre working on cars, thereís not much involved in exterior cleaning but motorhomes are completely different because they are much bigger and have a very different profile with a lot of detailing. Itís absolutely vital to keep them looking as clean and shiny as possible on the outside because if they donít look really good, customers wonít even bother to look inside. Vans that have been sold and are being handed over to customers are always a priority and everything else is cleaned in rotation. I normally clean two of the smaller vehicles a day or one big motorhome - working on a Concorde Liner is a major job because theyíre so big. Vehicles that have been taken in part exchange are often time consuming too because they have often been kept outside and some havenít been used for a while which means they need a lot of attention to bring them up to sale standard.
Q What is the best thing about working for the company
A I work with a good group of people and Iím on the go all the time so the days go by very quickly! I really enjoyed going to the recent international caravan and motorhome show at the NEC in Birmingham to get all the vehicles ready for visitors. Although it was hard work it was really interesting and good to have a change of scene for a few days.
Q If you could take a motorhome anywhere in the world, where would you go?
A Although I donít have a great personal interest in motorhomes, it would be good to take one down to Cornwall - a bit more luxurious than camping in my tent.
Mark used to work for the Benetton Formula 1 team and likes to keep in touch with his old workmates. At the 2010 Belgian Grand Prix at Spa, he had his photo taken with the F1 trophy by Polish Team Renault driver Robert Kubica.