How to Get a HGV License

Heavy Goods Vehicles (or HGVs for short) form the spine of transportation and logistics across the length and breadth of the United Kingdom. With a HGV, distributors, suppliers and customers across the country have constant access to a huge range of cargo.

It’s no wonder then that HGV jobs are always in high demand, but how to get a HGV license? First of all, let’s start with the different types of HGV license:

Different Types of HGV License

There are 4 driving license categories for HGV vehicles:

  • Category C+E – The highest grade of license, this HGV license is reserved for the heaviest vehicles weighing more than 7.5 tonnes and trailers weighing over 750kg. You’ll typically find this license used in construction.
  • Category C – The most common HGV license, a category C allows you to drive a range of large trucks.
  • Category C1+E – This license covers you for the operation of vehicles weighing between 3.5 and 7.5 tonnes and trailers over 750kg.
  • Category C1 – The lowest of the license categories, a C1 is preferred by professional drivers who require a license for trucks without trailers and vans.

Requirements for a HGV License

So you’ve singled out what kind of HGV license you need, but what criteria do you have to meet before working towards your professional driving qualification, or CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence) license?

  • Must be over 18 years old
  • Hold a valid car license

How to Get a Driver CPC

Once you’ve met the requirements, there are 3 criteria that you must meet in order to obtain a full Driver CPC:

Once completed, you must complete 35 hours of periodic training every 5 years in order to stay qualified, as well as renewing your license.

HGV License Cost

In order to partake in the 5-day training course and obtain your HGV license, there are certain fees that must be paid:

  • £900 – £1,100 5-day HGV training course (category C1, C or C+E)
  • £115 – Practical driving test (module 3)
  • £60 – HGV module 4 test fee


With these 4 stages taken care of, you’ll be the proud owner of a full HGV license and ready for employment on the open road. If there’s anything else that you would like to know on how to get a HGV license and HGV training, contact our friendly team here at Omnia Machinery.

Omnia Machinery at the Northern Powerhouse Export Awards



For the past 3 years, the PD Ports Northern Powerhouse Export Awards has been among the biggest dates in many exporter’s calendars. The evening celebrates the top exporters in the North of England and their achievements, with nearly 150 category nominations from companies across the North East, North West and Yorkshire represented among the event’s nominees.

Keen followers of the awards, this year our team here at Omnia Machinery had the honour and privilege of being nominated for an award ourselves as part of the ‘New to Export’ category.

The Categories

  • New to Export sponsored by Ithica Films
  • E-Commerce Exporter of the Year sponsored by Department for International Trade
  • Most Entrepreneurial Exporter of the Year
  • Micro Exporter of the Year
  • Small Exporter of the Year sponsored by Chamber International
  • Large Exporter of the Year sponsored by Rahman Ravelli Solicitors
  • Export Team of the Year
  • High Growth Markets Exporter of the Year sponsored by HSBC
  • Emerging Markets Exporter of the Year sponsored by The Growth Company
  • Overall Northern Powerhouse Exporter of the Year sponsored by PD Ports


The PD Ports Northern Powerhouse Export Awards 2019

This year’s awards ceremony took place on February the 7th at the National Railway Museum in York, the perfect setting for what promised to be a fun-filled evening of food, drinks and some of the industry’s most influential and respected individuals and companies.

We were greeted upon our arrival with a glass of prosecco before being ushered into the impressive entrance hall of the museum as we awaited our table number. Here some of the biggest names in export rubbed shoulders, talked shop and discussed the evening ahead.

So what about the evening ahead? As well as enjoying a fantastic 3-course meal and complimentary wine, we were an audience to some amazingly inspirational guest speakers. Among the many notable speakers were the likes of the Baroness Fairhead CBE the Minister of State for Trade and Export Promotion, Counsellor Zhang of The Chinese Embassy, Frans Calje the CEO of PD Ports, BE group’s CEO Nicki Clark and Ian Tandy, the UK Head of Global Trade & Receivables Finance from HSBC.


Our Experience

Though we were unfortunate to miss out on the ‘New to Export’ award (congratulations to WASP Rescue!) every facet of the evening as a whole was a fantastic experience. We were honoured to partake in an event which highlights and celebrates the pedigree of businesses successfully exporting from various regions in the North of England.

The awards served to bring businesses together and strengthened the critical importance of strong export and trading and their significant value to the United Kingdom’s economy in such uncertain times.

We came away from the event feeling incredibly inspired and eager to deliver more exporting excellence to our clients throughout 2019, continuing our reputation for high-quality heavy machinery and an unparalleled customer service experience.


Here’s to next year’s event, and many more Northern Powerhouse Export Awards to come. 

How to Become a Plant Operator: Training & Education

Construction sites can be dangerous environments, full of potential hazards and heavy machinery. This is why then, all plant operator jobs require integral training for each operator and their specifics tasks and plant machinery.

There are two kinds of certificate you can obtain in order to become a plant operator, depending on the size of the site that you’re going to be working on. For smaller sites an ITSSAR certificate (Independent Training Standards Scheme and Register) is ideal, for larger sites and most construction companies, you’ll need a CPCS card (Construction Plant Competence Scheme). We’re going to cover both below:


ITSSAR Training

An ITSSAR training course typically takes between 1 and 9 days, depending on the nature of the course itself. An ITSSAR training certificate will cover you for smallscale work across the whole of the UK and Ireland, and you’re able to select an accredited trainer located near to you, or alternatively, an instructor may travel to your site should the location be suitable.

An ITSSAR certificate will qualify the holder to operate all kinds of machinery, including but not limited to:

    • Pallet Trucks
    • Lift Trucks
    • Saddle Trucks
    • Reach Trucks
    • Sideloaders
    • Telescopic Handlers
    • Tow Tractors
    • Dumpers
    • Loading Shovels
    • Skid Steers


CPCS Training

A CPCS card is an industry recognised means of identifying that an individual meets the required skill and training levels required by many larger-scale plants and employers. With a CPCS card, potential employees can prove that they possess the necessary knowledge to perform within a sector with specific machinery to a competent level.

This proof of competence is combined with up-to-date health and safety awareness, two essential areas needed for a plant operator. Relevant CPCS training benefits both the employer and employee, ensuring that employers are taking health and safety standards seriously and are staffing a highly skilled set of employees, while a fully CPCS trained employee’s additional experience and knowledge will aid in making a site or plant safer.   

There are three criteria of CPCS cards; the trained operator card, competent operator card and lastly the tester card, the most advanced CPCS card available. The training duration for these courses typically depends on the trainee’s experience and can range from 1 to 9 days.

The trained operator card (also referred to as a ‘red card’) covers a plant operator for a non-renewable period of 2 years, after which they will be required to upgrade to a competent operator card (or ‘blue card’). This card is valid for 5 years and is able to be renewed once expired, making the CPCS blue card the most popular card type for many plant operator jobs.


Types of CPCS Training

CPCS plant courses include but are not limited to:

  • Crawler Crane
  • Compact Crane
  • Mobile Crane
  • Tower Crane
  • Forward Tipping Dumper
  • 180° Excavators
  • 360° Excavators
  • Industrial Forklift Trucks
  • Forklift Sideloader
  • Telescopic Handler
  • Grader
  • Hoist
  • Loading Shovels
  • Skid Steer Loader
  • Mobile Elevating Work Platforms
  • Road Rollers
  • Compactors
  • Agricultural Tractors
  • Crawler
  • Lorry Loader
  • Slinger
  • Crusher
  • Screener
  • Dump Trucks
  • Soil Stabiliser


How Do I Get a CPCS Card?

There are many CPCS training courses available throughout the UK, and the right course for you will most likely depend on your location and specifics of the course that you require.

One of the most popular means of obtaining a CPCS card is through the CITB (Construction Industry Training Board) and their network of National Construction Colleges, the largest planting training provider in the UK. They offer an amazing range of 180+ courses covering a variety of industry sectors, while they also boast over 40 local training locations nationwide and over 90 training groups across the length and breadth of the UK.

Frequently Asked Questions About Our Plant Machinery

The amount of plant machinery available to purchase is vast, and with a number of specialist machines and equipment available across numerous sectors, it can be a little bewildering knowing exactly what you need for your project needs and some of the processes involved.

Our expert team here at Omnia Machinery have compiled an easy-to-digest guide on FAQs you might encounter in your industry, be that construction, quarrying, mining, farming, forestry or other.

  • Why is heavy machinery called ‘plant’?

What remains a mystery to many is, why exactly is heavy machinery often referred to as plant machinery? The term ‘plant’ used in the context of a factory, manufacturing or construction site, derives from the Latin term ‘plantare’, which means to “fix in place”.

Quite simply put, a factory (or plant) is a huge structure which cannot be moved, hence it’s “planted” in place. Plant machinery relates to the heavy machinery used in or around these factories and sectors.

So now we’ve covered the origins of plant machinery, what are its categories?

  • What are the categories of plant equipment?

Heavy equipment can be separated into 18 different subdivision categories, each of which is comprised of various different types of plant machinery:

  1. Articulated – Includes articulated haulers and articulated trucks
  2. Backhoe – Consists of backhoes and backhoe loaders
  3. Compactor – Is comprised of soil stabilisers and soil compactors
  4. Excavator – Includes standard excavators, dredging, bucket-wheel excavators, amphibious excavators and compact excavators among other machines
  5. Grader – Graders are also referred to as road graders or motor graders
  6. Highway – Comprises of different categories of dump trucks
  7. Hydromatic Tool – Includes the likes of ballast tampers, pile drivers and rotary tillers
  8. Loader – Includes standard loaders, wheel loaders and skip loaders
  9. Material Handler – Concerns the likes of cherry pickers, cranes and forklifts
  10. Mining – Consists of mining trucks and tractors
  11. Paving – Includes road pavers, road planers, cure rigs and compactors among other equipment
  12. Pipelayer – A type of construction equipment also referred to as a ‘sideboom’
  13. Scraper – Features standard scrapers and wheel tractor scrapers
  14. Skidsteer – A skid steer loader
  15. Timber – A category comprised of harvesters, skidders and feller bunchers
  16. Track Loader
  17. Track-type – A category including tractors, bulldozers, snowcats and track excavators
  18. Underground – Comprises of road header machines, rock drills and underground mining equipment


  • How can I be sure that your plant machinery is in good condition?

At Omnia Machinery you’ll receive our Omnia promise, that each and every one of our machines are tried and tested meticulously and complete with the vehicle’s model and year of registration, ensuring that our customers can buy a high-quality of equipment with confidence.

Your machine is guaranteed to arrive in full working order and ready to be put to use on your project right away. We strive to provide the best buying experience possible and encourage you to view all of our plant machinery before purchasing, you are even able to use your own tech team to check that the machinery is to your exact standards.

  • How do I know that the machine’s hour clock is correct?

Here at Omnia we only purchase plant machines with full history to prove the pedigree of the machine. Our expert team fully inspect each product and its records, providing our customers with an accurate record of the machine’s total operating hours so that you’re sure exactly what the machine has been operating for.

  • Now I’ve chosen my plant machinery, how can I have it shipped to me?

Not only do our fantastic team here at Omnia Machinery take care of all your equipment’s checks and records, but we’ll also organise the shipping for you too.

In 2018 we shipped our high-quality machines to 27 different countries across 5 different continents. We’re experienced on a global stage, and we are well-versed in taking care of every aspect of documentation, insurance and logistics to ensure a quick and hassle-free shipping process, always keeping you informed with your purchase’s progress along the way.


Should you have any other queries regarding our plant machinery or our processes here at Omnia Machinery, please do not hesitate to contact us or speak to our friendly team who are just a phone call away on +44 (0) 1642 332612.

How to extend machinery life

Knowledge and experience can go a long way when it comes down to looking after your machinery. Routine maintenance can help identify any current or potential problems that may occur. Most machinery requires constant maintenance but with a proper maintenance plan, you will be able to keep it in top condition.

Here are some points to think about before purchasing construction equipment:

  • Make sure you have enough time and money to put into your machinery.
  • Be committed and keep up to date with machinery training.
  • Make sure you have knowledge of machinery you want to buy before you purchase.
  • Make sure the full-service history is available, if possible before you purchase a machine.
  • Have the right environment to store the equipment when it’s not being used.

Fluids maintenance

Testing and analysing the fluids from your machinery is the most accurate way to find out what’s going on internally with the machine. Oil and fuel can be sent off to a lab to be checked, which can help you detect problems before they turn into something more considerable. The more awareness you have internally of your machinery, the better it is to manage when it comes down to budgeting for the repairs.

Lubrication is one of the most important maintenance checks to make and should be the first place to check for possible leaks. It reduces friction around moving parts in the machine, so maintaining the lubrication will extend the life of your machinery.

Check for signs of wear and tear

If you discover wear and tear within your machinery, be sure to perform the necessary checks and replacements. Here are some common causes of wear and tear:

  • Vibration can come from gears pulleys, chains and belts that are out of alignment
  • Shock can come from previous accidents and poor operator techniques.
  • High temperatures can come from extended use such as friction which is caused by poor lubrication and worn parts.
  • Age affects many components such as belts, the seal could crack, bolts will loosen and go out of shape. Age is a huge factor in how parts will wear out more quickly.

In the long run, regular maintenance will help your machinery hold its value for longer.

What should I be doing as an employer?

From an employers point of view, if you are providing equipment from hand tools to large machinery, you need to be able to demonstrate that you have the arrangements in place to eliminate the hazards. By having this in your maintenance routine, your workers will be in a controlled and safe environment.

There are many hazards to look out for when working internally with machinery. For example, being exposed to materials that are normally enclosed such as leaks, breakages and tools that could break during use. Correct planning and communication is key. Complying with the health and safety rule  “The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998” helps to keep people safe wherever machinery is used at work.


To conclude, the information provided above will give you guidance on how to extend the life of heavy construction machinery. Greater knowledge can effectively be shared across your organisation and should bring you more benefits on a wider scale.

How to protect yourself against scams

When it comes down to buying used machinery, taking as many precautions as possible is vital to protect yourself against scammers. With machinery costs sometimes rising into the hundreds of thousands of pounds, ensuring you have taken all the correct steps will prevent you from making any errors.

There are many red flags to look out for so keep an eye out to minimize your chances of being scammed.

Legitimate Seller

Background research should be your number one priority. Company details provided such as their email address, telephone number, social media platforms and any financial statement history should all match up.

Secondly, find out where they are based. Searching for their building name on Google maps and checking out their surroundings will give you a bit of reassurance. Contact companies nearby and ask them if they are a genuine business.

Finally, you could test the seller on their knowledge of the machine. Ask about the specification and ask for additional pictures that they haven’t already provided. Organise a viewing with the seller if possible before purchasing. This is a great way to meet the seller or owner of the machine, as well as giving you the opportunity to make sure that the machine is genuine as described and analyse any service and maintenance history.

Pricing and E-mails

You may receive an email from potential scammers offering you machines they claim to have for sale. The machine might seem genuine from the pictures and description, but the price could make you think differently. This is something you need to question the seller on.

You may receive quotes with fraudulent links that could potentially hack in your account if you’ve provided them with unnecessary information. Most of the time you can pick up on a fake email. They might use a URL shortener to hide what website they would end up at, a few errors with punctuation and grammar or the email, in general, might look suspicious. Some of the emails will seem convincing but to prevent all the hassle, make sure you check your emails thoroughly.

Too Many Misspellings

You might view everything the seller has for sale and you notice that their grammar isn’t great. This could be an indication that it’s a scammer using an automated translator. There could also be a possibility that the seller isn’t a serious seller and quickly posted the ad. This is something to take into consideration when you enquire on a machine with someone you have never dealt with before.

Buy With Confidence

It’s difficult to find a trustworthy company for used machinery, but here at Omnia Machinery, we can provide good quality used construction machinery such as road planers, track excavators, mobile cranes and much more. We already have a system in place to prevent scams, which means we are able to take all the worry away from the customer by researching all the above for you, making it a stress-free process. If you have any questions, we are more than happy to help anytime, just ask.

Contact us online or call us on +44 (0) 1642 332 612 for more information.

3 Key Benefits of buying used machinery

There are several benefits of buying used machinery from a reputable dealer. A good quality well maintained, properly inspected used machine can provide you with the same performance as new machinery but can be far more cost effective. There are countless pieces of quality used machinery available on the market currently from all the top manufacturers such as Caterpillar, Wirtgen, Bomag and much more.

Read below on how beneficial it can be to buy used machinery.

Environmentally friendly

Most used machinery, if it has been well maintained, can be sold on which means that it does not go to waste and ultimately end up in a landfill. If all machinery was scrapped the long-term effect on the planet would be disastrous.

You might not see the value in it and it might be the easiest and quickest option to just get rid of it. Doing a bit of research into how much the machine is worth might surprise you. Someone might buy it to use themselves or to do them up then sell it on, so its definitely something to consider.

Financial advantages

In the long run, buying used equipment is much more cost effective. The price gap between new and used construction machinery is important to pay attention to as the value can drop dramatically, especially in the first few years.

Generally, machinery will drop in value by 20 to 40 per cent in the first year. That’s crazy to think when you’ve paid hundreds of thousands of pounds to purchase a machine and could have bought a perfectly good used option.

Timely completion of projects/speed of delivery

Sometimes construction projects have a short deadline meaning that you’ll need a machine quickly. Lead times on brand new machines are long – often stretching into years – and so used machinery is a cost-effective option that can be purchased immediately.

Omnia Machinery will help you find the perfect machine for your project at the right price. We will take you to inspect the machine to make sure it’s in good condition and take care of the entire shipping process delivered directly to your yard.

Used equipment market

There is a huge global demand for used machinery no more so in Africa than anywhere else in the world. In many African countries used equipment is a better solution, this is for various reasons such as fuel quality, lack of skilled operators on modern equipment and availability of spare parts. The Africa Agri-equipment and machinery market are expected to grow between 2015 – 2020. This is due to rapid growth in population across many African nations but with 80% of the land still untouched the need for construction is ever increasing.

We have availability of a wide range of used machine types, models and manufacturers, to suit all budgets.

At Omnia Machinery we can provide good quality used construction machinery such as cranes, road construction machinery, quarry machinery and much more. We can even deal with shipping making your experience stress free. If you have any questions, we are more than happy to help anytime just ask.

Contact us online or call us on +44 (0) 1642 332 612

The construction work on Thika bypass link road begins

Construction work on the four roads linking Garissa highway to Thika bypass has commenced. The US $14.9m project will include tarmacking of the first 2.1km stretch from Engen to Kiganjo junction.

According to H Young, the contractor for the 2.1km stretch class D road, the road’s two lanes and carriageway shoulders will be completed in a week. “We guarantee that the tarmac laid will last more than 20 years,” said site agent Engineer Earnest Ruto.

Afterwards, the contractor will embark on Broadway-Athena link road, BAT-Kiganjo link road and Kivulini-Kiganjo link road.

Speaking while commissioning the construction of the first link road, Thika Town MP Patrick Wainaina said that once completed, the bypass will ease traffic getting into Thika town and its environs by offering alternative routes.

Traffic ease

It is expected that once completed, motorists driving towards Nairobi from Garissa and those coming from Nyeri, Meru and Murang’a heading towards Garissa will not need to pass through the town.

       “This will help ease traffic along Garissa road and open up Kiganjo, Kiang’ombe, Kiandutu and Athena to investors”

       The bypass will also reduce the time taken to drive to Nairobi to 25 minutes and thus make Thika an ideal residential area for those who work in Nairobi,” Mr Wainaina said.

Thika West deputy county commissioner Tom Anjere called on investors to take advantage of the ongoing road expansion works to set up affordable residential apartments to help meet the government’s housing agenda.



Sierra Leone to construct Bumbuna II Power project

The government of Sierra Leone is planning to persuade the Environment Protection Agency to award the Environment and Social Health Impact Assessment (ESHIA) license for the commencement of work on the Bumbuna II project.

On completion, the project will generate 143MW of electricity for communities across Sierra Leone.

According to the Deputy Minister of Energy, Osmond Hanciles, presently the west African country enjoys 20% access rate to electricity supply, however, when the Bumbuna II project reaches completion, electricity accessibility rate will be 30%.

       “We have tried to improve the distribution capacity of the Electricity Distribution and Supply Authority (EDSA) because in 2007 there were 47KW hours, but it is now 400KW hours. This is a significant improvement in the energy sector,” he said.

He added that the country now has the capacity to accommodate over 100MW within Freetown and its surrounding areas.

Completion of Bumbuna II project

Hanciles assured that when the Bumbuna II project is complete, the ministry of energy and its utility companies will be able to supply at least 80MW without any glitches.

According to the Executive chairman of SELI Hydropower, Patrick Olufemi Beckley, they have put mitigating strategies in place to prevent potential hazard in areas where Bumbuna II project will be.

Initially, SELI Hydropower intended to implement the Bumbuna II produce so that it would produce 365MW electricity, and supply to major historic towns in Tonkolili District. However, President Ernest Bai Koroma wants the people to stay within their environment. They also should not be disturbed by the project.

“After that statement, we decided to reduce it to 143MW. We also thanked President Koroma for thinking about the welfare of the people,” said Beckley.