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Case Study: CCTV Manager, Cheshire East Council

Company: Cheshire East Council

Name: Stuart Hobson, CCTV Manager

Courses: Managing CCTV Control Rooms; SIA

The Cheshire East Council central control room was established in June 2011, to provide continuous monitoring 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days per year. Its CCTV network of over 150 ‘on street’ and over 90 car park cameras are deployed throughout 14 towns across the Borough, with the team managing approximately 1,100 incidents per month.

The challenge

Keeping up-to-date with best practice, understanding fast changing CCTV legislation and continual career development is vital to the successful day-to-day operations of the control room, and training has a crucial role. Its CCTV Manager, Stuart Hobson, was looking for a training provider and when he attended IFSEC International, he was impressed by the quality of the presenters speaking at the Tavcom Theatre. To further endorse his decision, their control room counterparts in Chester had already received training from Tavcom.

The solution

The first course undertaken was Managing CCTV Control Rooms, delivered at Tavcom’s training centre in Hampshire. Hobson explains: “It was a very challenging course, but the trainers were incredibly supportive. They really do enthuse you and ensure you get the most out of the course.” After successfully completing the course Hobson decided that Tavcom should be the control room’s training provider.

To make it easier for the whole team to benefit from training, Tavcom tutors also worked on-site in Macclesfield for two-weeks, to deliver its SIA course. Hobson adds: “Closing the control room for training is not an option, so the fact that Tavcom were willing and able to accommodate our busy schedules was fantastic.”

One of the aspects that has impressed most is the calibre of the tutors, who are always industry leaders with phenomenal knowledge: “Tavcom tutors understand their subject matter inside out and that is what enthuses people to learn and want to better themselves,” adds Hobson.

The benefits

To date, Cheshire East Council has completed six courses with Tavcom and Hobson observes how this has benefited him personally: “I can’t stress how much it has done to prepare me for my career. As soon as I finished the course I was confidently fielding briefings with the BBC and meetings with our Chief Executive. What’s more, everyone now comes to me for advice. That is the difference a course with Tavcom can make.”

He also notes the impact it has had on his team: “Working in a control room can be very stressful if you do not have the right training behind you. Thanks to our Tavcom training, I know we have the right staff in the right place with the right knowledge to do the job.”

Looking to the near future, the team will be undertaking the Advanced Control Rooms Skills course and as Hobson concludes: “We can’t wait for it!”.

Jim Muir takes advantage of Tavcom’s Resettlement Initiative …

jim-muirJim Muir is a great example of someone who has taken advantage of the Tavcom Resettlement initiative which has been set up to facilitate the transition of ex-forces personnel into the security sector.

Having spent 15 years in the army, Jim decided that he wanted to embark on a new career within the electronic security sector and realised that in order to do so, he needed to learn new skills in addition to those he acquired whilst in the army.

Jim decided to book his place on the Tavcom Fast Track Integrated Systems BTEC Diploma training programme. This comprises four separate five day courses covering Access Control, CCTV, Intruder Alarms and IP, and is designed to be completed in just four weeks.

Jim has kindly provided the following comments;
“I carried out quite a lot of research to find out which training provider could offer me the best level of training and all roads led to Tavcom as they are so well established in this area. I was also impressed with the fact that they understood the needs of ex-forces personnel.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all at Tavcom, from the office staff to the tutors, for their assistance and encouragement throughout the course. At times I thought I was out of my depth but the help your tutors gave me was above and beyond.”

Following his successful completion of the programme, Jim is being supported by Tavcom’s Resettlement recruitment partner, Cento Fire & Security Jobs, in his search for a rewarding career within the electronic security industry.

IMG_2325Innovative Technology Company (ITC) provides a wide range of security and defence services to its clients in Kuwait. In particular, since it was established in 1995 by a group of associates with a long standing military background, ITC has striven to play a major role in security, the oil industry and infrastructures in Kuwait.

Zaid al Sanea and Mohammad Jaber, Systems Engineers for ITC, recently visited the UK in order to study for Tavcom’s BTEC accredited Security Systems Fast Track Diploma which covers CCTV, Intruder Alarms, Access Control and Networking & IP topics. Both were able to complete all the relevant courses within their one month target.

Zaid has kindly provided the following feedback:

“Mohammad and I have thoroughly enjoyed our time studying in the Tavcom Training Centre for the Fast Track Security Systems Diploma. It was extremely useful to listen to the excellent Tavcom tutors who so willingly shared their experience which they had gained whilst working in real life situations. We also highly valued the hands-on practical sessions in the Tavcom workshops which really helped us to understand how to utilise best practise when installing a wide range of electronic security equipment.

I would recommend this Diploma course to any security professional or engineer who wishes to quickly gain a thorough understanding of key issues relating to CCTV, Intruder Alarms, Access Control and Networking & IP systems. I personally found the CCTV and IP courses to be absolutely amazing. What I learnt on these courses will be of great use to me in my day-to-day work in Kuwait.”

Les Green

Les Green worked for 24 years as a Facilities Manager for the NHS. His responsibilities included overseeing the deployment and maintenance of Access Control, CCTV intruder and fire alarms systems at a major hospital in East London.

For personal reasons, Les took the opportunity to apply for voluntary redundancy, but having taken time off to care for a loved one, Les decided he wished to embark on a new career working within the electronic security industry. In order to do so, Les understood that he needed to acquire a greater knowledge of the practical aspects of installing CCTV and intruder alarms systems.

 I recently attended Tavcom’s Practical CCTV and Practical Intruder Alarm systems training courses. I already had a general understanding of electronic security systems which I acquired through my work activities at an NHS hospital, but I realised that if I was to have a successful second career, it was essential to fill in some gaps in my knowledge.

I was a little apprehensive about going back into a learning environment having not done so since I left school many years before. Any lack of confidence evaporated the moment I walked through the entrance of the Tavcom Training Centre door to participate in the first of the two training courses. The warm welcome I received from many members of the Tavcom team instantly made me  feel at home. Most importantly, the level of help and encouragement I received from the Tavcom tutor throughout the five days of the course was matched in equal measure by the quality of the course materials and the excellent way in which the tutor delivered the course.

I have come away from both courses equipped with new skill sets and a degree of knowledge that has increased my enthusiasm for developing a career in the electronic security sector.

Les Green


“Having set up Protecteon-Plus for what I saw was a gap in the market for bespoke security solutions in Devon – I wanted, as Managing Director of the company, to ensure that we were up to date with the very latest developments in electronic security technology. I particularly wanted to ensure that our work reflected best practice in all aspects of a security system design, installation and maintenance.

In the process of applying for industry body certification I became aware that Tavcom Training was very much a respected and preferred supplier of security systems training. It therefore became an easy decision to make in terms of looking to Tavcom for all our training requirements.

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Ian Robins – Jersey Police

Ian Robins


The investment made in Tavcom training courses has been more than justified,
it was essential that I acquired the necessary knowledge and skill sets if I was to
smoothly take over responsibility for the management of Jersey’s town centre,
harbour and airport video surveillance systems, as well as the implementation
of any new systems. In addition to endeavouring to maintain and prolong the life
of existing analogue systems, I also wanted to fully understand the implications
of a planned and seamless migration to IP network based solutions.”

Ian Robins, Police Communications Infrastructure Manager
within the IT Department of States of Jersey Police



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Richard Conlon

Richard Conlon

“In 2010 due to economic downturn, I found myself out of work and decided to invest some of my redundancy payment in the Professional Practices of CCTV System Design distant learning course conducted by Tavcom Training. The distant learning format worked well for me because during that time I moved to Japan and worked in several different countries. The BTEC level 5 course challenged me on many levels which peaked my interest and vastly broadened my understanding of the key issues in respect of the design of CCTV systems.

“I have since achieved a Master of Science degree from Buckinghamshire New University. Tavcom certainly helped me on my way and I would like to extend my gratitude to all those involved” Richard Conlon

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Liam Gray – British Army

Liam Gray“I am just writing to say that the fast track integrated security systems course that I completed as part of my resettlement training has helped me secure a job with an installation company. I would like to thank Tavcom for the expert advice and training you gave me to help me successfully achieve this. I would recommend anybody from the forces wanting a job in the security industry to choose Tavcom. “

We are grateful to Liam for the positive feedback following his participation in the Tavcom Fast Track Integrated Systems BTEC Diploma training programme. Comprising four separate five day courses covering Access Control, CCTV, Intruder Alarms and IP, the Fast track programme is designed to be completed in just four weeks.

Liam’s service within the British army has included tours of duty in Afghanistan, Canada, Jordan and Kenya. Looking to build on his skills as an electrician acquired during his 10 years in the army, Liam decided to take advantage of the Ministry of Defence funded Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) scheme to book his place on the Fast Track programme. The ELC scheme is designed to assist service personnel to fund training courses as part of their resettlement into civilian life.

Following his successful completion of the programme, and having left the army in February 2015, Liam was immediately employed as an installation and service engineer by Camwatch, which has recently been acquired by VPS Holdings Ltd.

Anthony Sykes – Babcock International Group

Anthony Sykes 2Anthony Sykes is Principal Project Engineer for the Network Engineering and Support Services division of Babcock International Group, the UK’s leading engineering support services organisation with revenue of over £3.5bn in 2014 and an order book of circa £12 billion.

“Eleven of my colleagues and myself recently participated in a training programme conducted by Tavcom at our offices in Crewe. The programme comprised a one day CCTV ‘refresher’ followed by a three day BTEC level 3 certificated CCTV over IP course and the purpose of the course was to ensure that we were up to speed on the latest advances in video surveillance solutions.

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Craig Williams – SEF Consultancy Ltd

Craig WilliamsCraig Williams’ appetite for learning accelerated whilst he was working at a West Midlands installation company. “During my five years there as an installation and service engineer I gained considerable practical hands-on experience, but it became obvious that I needed to take on board a lot more knowledge so that I could fully understand what was needed to ensure that a security solution met, if not exceeded, the client’s expectations.”

Entirely at his own cost and in his own time, Craig enrolled in 2008 on a number of Tavcom training courses covering a wide range of subjects. This was followed in 2011 with Craig, once again at his own cost, enrolling on two further Tavcom BTEC accredited courses.

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James Ryan – City University

DSC_0044“I am Supervisor of the security team that is tasked to create a safe and secure environment for students and staff who work at City University which is located in the heart of London and has been ranked among the top 5% of universities in the world.

At my appraisal, opportunities were identified for professional development and the need for me to have the knowledge to be able to comply with SIA licence requirements. As a result, my manager authorised my participation in the Tavcom BTEC accredited CCTV Public Space Surveillance Diploma course.

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Issa Issack – African Barrick Gold (Pty)

Issa Issack“I am a Security System Technician for African Barrick Gold at the Bulyanhulu Gold Mine in Tanzania. African Barrick Gold, which is Tanzania’s largest gold producer and one of the largest in Africa, is committed to providing a safe and secure environment for its staff. The company’s CCTV systems provide a valuable tool to help us achieve this objective.

I have recently completed the Tavcom online Professional Practices of CCTV System Design BTEC level 5 Diploma and wish to place on record my satisfaction with the course content and the support that I received from Tavcom’s expert tutors.

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Alastair Cochrane – Safer Runnymede Team

“I attended the Advanced Control Room Operator Course in November 2013 run by Tavcom Training at its Bishops Waltham training centre. The course met my expectations in that it provided me with some excellent additional training skills and a more in-depth look at control room operations, as well as some of the technical aspects of the control room environment.

One area of the course that has particularly been of enormous personal benefit was the sections which covered advanced telephony and call handling skills. In December 2013 and January 2014, areas within Runnymede Borough Council saw some of the worst flooding since 1947.

The volume of out of hour’s calls to the control room was tremendous and I was able to put into practice many of the skills I obtained from Tavcom when dealing with highly emotional and distressed members of the public. This was a worthwhile and enjoyable training course in a pleasant environment with very professional training staff.”

Wayne Dalton

 Wayne Dalton“Having served my country overseas in Germany, Afghanistan and Iraq for eight years as a driver in the British Army, I decided to take advantage of the Ministry of Defence funded Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) scheme to help me fund the cost of a training courses which could help me develop a career when I resettled in a civilian job.

I had the opportunity to take over my father’s business, Chris Dalton Aerials, and although the company is very successful, having over many years established an excellent reputation for the quality of its work, I felt there was an opportunity to expand into other areas which require the same high standards of workmanship. With this in mind, I signed up for the Tavcom Practical CCTV training course.

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Steve Juliff, Security Department, University of Surrey

captureThe safety and security of our students, tutors and administration staff is of paramount importance. We are also determined to protect the wonderful facilities we have at the University from vandals, as well as detect and deter theft of our valuable assets. Our CCTV system plays an important role in helping our security personnel to achieve these objectives.
We were impressed by the depth of Tavcom’s technical knowledge when we used their technical consultancy services to carry out an audit of our campus CCTV system to ensure that all the cameras were located correctly and were fit for purpose. We therefore had no hesitation in subsequently asking them to carry out in-house training courses for our control room operators to assist them in successfully applying for a SIA license.

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Gareth Smith

Gareth Smith

There are an increasing number of installation companies offering apprenticeships to school, college and university leavers and Tavcom, the UK’s leading security systems training company, has been playing its part in helping many of these eager to learn apprentices by providing theoretical and hands-on training on a wide range of electronic security topics. Tavcom also offers training programmes for more mature students, many of whom are ex-service personnel who are able to take advantage of the Ministry of Defence funded Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) scheme to fund training courses as part of their resettlement into civilian life.

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Alan Gardner

Alan GardnerAlan Gardner FSyI, passionately believes that no matter what industry you may be working in, it is essential that you take full advantage of the training available in order for you to perform your job to the best of your ability. Alan has always adopted this approach to whatever challenge he has undertaken, and so it is not surprising that throughout his career within the electronic security industry he has taken the time to increase his knowledge and learn from experts on how he can help raise service levels of the organisations he has worked for.

Over recent years Alan has attended various training courses which have resulted in him being awarded a Tavcom BTEC accredited Integrated Systems Diploma, and in addition he has also attended various other Tavcom training courses including Managing Security, Managing Disaster Recovery and Managing CCTV Control Rooms courses all of which are BTEC Professional Award certificated. He has also attended other security management courses. Read More

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