Personal pride in our public service

Heidie Coombs

Heidie’s a leading light in operations – and in caring about mental health.

Things have changed since Heidie started out in streetlighting in 2003. The technology’s improved and there’s better energy saving. And more women are coming into the profession, too.

"It’s still unusual to be a female Operations Manager,” she says. “It’s a predominantly male environment but I’ve never seen that as a barrier and it doesn’t bother me. At Amey I’ve never witnessed anyone favouring a man over a woman."

Her team of nine operatives maintain 30,000 streetlights, bollards and beacons across Walsall – making sure the town is safely lit for all its citizens.

Heidie’s also passionate about wellbeing. She teaches First Aid for Mental Health and has encouraged over 40 colleagues to become Mental Health Ambassadors – a first point of contact that people at Amey can turn to.

"Talking about mental health is becoming more accepted. It’s okay not to be okay. I listen and help if I can."

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