At Tideway, our aim is to inspire the engineers of tomorrow by promoting the STEM subjects of science, technology, engineering and maths.
We also want to showcase some of the many talented people we have working across the project. Meet Construction Engineer Louis Robjant.
As a Construction Engineer on Tideway, there is never a typical day.
I’ve worked on the project for almost two years, during which I have been involved with the construction works at Barn Elms and Hammersmith Pumping Station, both located in the West section.
I tend to be site-based, where I get to be outside and at the face of work, this allows me to see the excellent work our contractors are doing to build the Tideway project. I love working here, especially as Tideway has created a caring, collaborative working environment.
My role is to support the Project Manager and Supervisors in undertaking assurance activities. These include vehicle audits, quality inspections, health and safety surveillance and inspections. While in the office, I support the PM reviewing Inspection and Test Plans and Work Package Plans (Method Statements & Risk Assessments) and take the lead on some site activities.
Like many people, my career ambitions were to be a professional footballer, but the closest I got was playing for a local football team in Devon where I grew up. During my school days, I discovered that I was good at maths and had a keen mind for solving problems, understanding how things work and building things. This led me initially to chase the money in the banking sector, so I chose to study Economics, Maths and Computing at A-Level.
I was able to secure a place at Sheffield Hallam University doing financial services. However, during a gap year I decided I wanted to build something and leave some sort of legacy. This made me reconsider my career path and, slightly influenced by my father who is an architect, I decided to apply to study a Civil Engineering degree at Coventry University.
During my university course, I chose to do a work placement between my second and third academic years. Towards the end of my placement, a few colleagues suspected that I might be dyslexic, as I frequently made silly spelling mistakes. I honestly didn’t see the mistakes, I was blind to it.
Following a student services assessment, it was confirmed that I am indeed dyslexic. This highlighted to me that I need to check my written work by reading it aloud, to ensure it’s what I meant to say. This task is a lot easier now as you can use online tools. Dyslexia hasn’t stopped me in my pursuit to be a Chartered Engineer, which I successfully achieved in 2018.
So far in my 11-year career, I have designed roads and underground structures, solved flooding problems, upgraded a sewerage treatment works and now I am helping to build this Super Sewer.
My focus now and over the next few years is to develop my project management skills, improve awareness of civil engineering among school children and support woman in construction. I have recently linked, using Tideway's Mentorloop programme, with a Project Manager and two apprentices.
At the beginning of March this year I was fortunate to speak to the whole of year 9 (over 200 kids) at Chiswick School, in West London, as part of Career’s Week. I visited the school to explain the Tideway project and to promote the construction industry as a career path. I set them a challenge to come up with ideas about how they could clean the River Thames.
Away from Tideway, I play squash in the Surrey league for a small club in South London (Grafton), where I’m the first team captain. Also, over the last four years my wife, Hayley, and I have been renovating our house which has been a great fun challenge.