Driver, trainer, blood biker - Dave Shakespeare and the job he’d do for free, if he could!

After a varied career involving 15 years crisscrossing the UK and Europe as a long-distance HGV driver, Dave Shakespeare now has what he considers to be his perfect job.

Dave joined Dawsongroup truck and trailer nearly 13 years ago, originally as a Branch Driver. He went on to become a Rental Controller and later our Driver Training & Development Manager. 

With a stack of driving and transport qualifications to his name, Dave is both a RoSPA Advanced Driver and has achieved the RoSPA Level 4 Award in Advanced Behavioural Driving Training. 

He provides a wide range of driver training to our customers, including defensive, fuel-efficient, and attitudes and the behavioural aspects of driving - all aimed at coaching drivers to make better decisions. 

In addition, Dave looks after all our Driver CPC training, driver assessments, shunter training and product familiarisation across our entire range of equipment. 

Dave is passionate about what he does and is a great believer in the saying: ‘Don’t complain, do something about it!’ So, he gets great satisfaction from being able to actually do something about poor driving standards and maybe even help save a life one day. 

He remembers how a Transport Manager told him that his training had completely transformed one particular driver. He’d gone from being one of the worst to the best - from being negative about fuel performance to someone really interested and keen to pass on his skills to other drivers. 

Another of Dave’s guiding mottos is: ‘If a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well!’ He’s always determined to deliver to a high standard, and gets an enormous buzz out of helping drivers understand, use and get the best out of their equipment. 

As part of his job, Dave provides training at the largest defence training establishment in the world, where he coaches military personnel and has worked with Senior Instructors to help devise new approaches to their training and test criteria. 

Dave’s not only a qualified IAM Advanced Motorcycle Rider but also a RoSPA Advanced Motorcycle Rider - both essential for his first love; volunteering as a Blood Biker. 

Over the years, Dave’s mum has had a number of major operations and was completely dependent on the NHS for her treatment. Giving up some of his spare time to be a volunteer Blood Biker is Dave’s way of repaying his family’s debt to the NHS. 

He’s part of a team that uses dedicated motorcycles to courier much-needed blood, plasma, platelets and a multitude of samples and equipment from one hospital to another - urgently and at any time of the day or night. 

Another of Dave’s passions is long-distance cycling and he recently pedalled 217 miles to Skegness and back for a McDonald’s breakfast! 

Dave also loves motorcycle touring, usually combining it with visits to World War II sites – an interest stemming from his grandfather’s part in the war. 

Dave was very fond of his grandfather Bill and he recently tried to retrace his journey from the D-Day Normandy landings. 

Bill landed on Sword Beach on the 6th June 1944. He experienced fierce fighting and witnessed the loss of hundreds of his comrades. A few weeks later, his patrol was ambushed in a forest and he was lucky to escape with his life, again! 

After Bill returned home, the war was a taboo subject so Dave had to piece together his story by contacting his grandfather’s regiment, doing some research and filling in some of the gaps from his dad’s and grandma’s memories. 

Dave spent a long time searching for the forest in France, but eventually gave up. However, four years later, he made a trip to Chereau Trailers on behalf of Dawsongroup truck and trailer to demonstrate an LNG-powered fridge unit. 

By pure coincidence, he stopped at a truck stop and discovered that he was less than 1km away from the forest! 

Dave visited the forest later that year and remembers what a humbling experience it was to stand where his grandfather had fought all those years before. 

He describes Bill as a very modest hero and is proud to say that he owes him his freedom. Bill has been gone 20 years now but Dave still misses him greatly. 

Dave has been our Driver Training & Development Manager for the last eight years. Reflecting on his job and his love for his work, he commented: “Dawsongroup truck and trailer is like a family for me. I love my job and the people I work with. If I could afford it, I’d do my job for free!” 

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Dawsongroup Truck and Trailer Limited.

Delaware Drive, Tongwell,

Milton Keynes MK15 8JH

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