Ocean Housing is a charitable provider of social and affordable homes throughout Cornwall, managing a stock of over 4,500 properties. As well as taking pride in the design of its buildings, Ocean also takes care about creating a pleasant environment around its homes and Arthur Robertson has the job of managing the team that looks after the outdoor spaces.
“Our team has traditionally used ride-on mowers for maintaining the estates,” he says, “but many of the newer developments don’t have so many large open areas. There are more tight spaces, difficult corners and quite often sloping ground where we couldn’t use the ride-ons. That has meant using smaller push-mowers and strimmers which add time and complexity to the jobs.
“Climate change has had an effect on the mowing season too. We now find we are cutting grass right up to December and starting again in February. Also, if we have a really wet period – which is happening more frequently – the work then has to be carried out with the much smaller mowers.”
By the start of this year Arthur had decided to seek a better solution. One option was to consider a remote controlled mower and the Cornwall dealer for Spider mowers, Vincent Tractors and Plant, arranged a demonstration day.
“The Spider ILD01 was a revelation. Not only could it cut grass in all the areas where we had been using ride-on mowers, but it also has the ability to manoeuvre in tight spaces allowing us to dispense with the hand mowers and reduce the amount of strimmer work.
“Added to that, the Spider has an incredible ability to work on slopes – even steep ones – and is much lighter than ride-ons, thus causing less impact on the ground and remaining safe to use even when the grass is very wet. The Spider can be operated from a safe distance and makes less mess on the hard landscaping, cutting the time spent clearing grass cuttings from footpaths and reducing slip hazards for pedestrians.
“One of the challenges we face is constantly moving our equipment from one estate to another, and the Spider scores strongly here too. Moving the ride-on mower means using a large trailer hauled by a van, but the Spider will fit on a small trailer which can be towed by a car, manoeuvred by hand, and loaded and unloaded easily.”
Having made the case for the Spider mower to the purchasing department of Ocean Housing, Arthur took delivery of a Spider ILD01 at the start of this season. His verdict? “The Spider is a winner all round!” he says. so much so, in fact, that Ocean Housing ordered a second Spider ILD01 and no longer operates any ride-on mowers.
Spider mowers are imported to the UK by T H WHITE Machinery Imports and are available from authorised distributors across the country. To find your nearest dealer and arrange a demo, visit www.spidermower.co.uk.