Shaun has been working in the industry since 1992, when he helped to set up Norfolk’s first branch of CSD Professional, a security systems wholesaler and distributor. There Shaun attended training in basic equipment familiarisation and installation. It was this experience that first gave Shaun the bug for the technical side of security systems and he made the decision to go back to school, enrolling in a 2-year course and graduating with distinctions in City and Guilds/NVQ in Electrical Installation and Inspection and Testing.
Shaun has been with Dragon Security Systems since 1996, where he originally joined as an apprentice engineer to further his training in installation techniques and procedures. Shaun worked his way up to eventually become a service engineer. All the while Shaun was working tirelessly to further advance his knowledge of system maintenance and control panel programming.
In 1999 Shaun was promoted to engineering supervisor at Dragon Security Systems. 3 years later he was promoted again to engineering manager. It was at this time that Shaun attended further courses and training for management and the more technical side of his role. Courses he has attended include: administration software, health & safety, Intruder alarm, access control, fire, CCTV and IPCCTV equipment.
Shaun has since held the position of Projects Engineering Manager, and in November 2015 he was again promoted to Contracts Director. He works to assist the company to move forward into new and exciting contracts. His role at the company involves discussing customer requirements and seeing the contract through from inception to completion.
I joined a local construction company straight from school and after 4 years moved to Norwich based civil engineers, May Gurney & Co. Ltd. working primarily on sea defence construction, 2 roll on roll off ferry terminals and the construction of Bacton Gas site. Whilst working at Bacton, I changed divisions within May Gurney and became a supervisor in the sealant division. In layman’s terms the work involved weatherproofing multi storey buildings throughout the UK. Within 3 years I was promoted to Contracts Manager, responsible for everything from quotation through to credit control. I was fortunate for being responsible only to the chairman of the group at that time, the late Sidney Utting MBE, a man I greatly admired and often refer to today.
My “claim to fame” in those days was securing the contract at the very first jumbo jet hangar at heathrow airport – that seems a very long time ago now.
Travelling the length and breadth of the UK, clocking up some 40,000 miles a year took its toll, particularly following a serious road accident which incapacitated me for 6 months, I left May Gurney to assist my father-in-law to develop and refurbish his newly acquired office premises in Wroxham. When this project ended I started a retail jewellery business in a section of that premises as a “fill in” before deciding “what to do next”.
During this time, the shop suffered many attempted break-ins and 2 successful robberies and it was this string of events which triggered the idea for “Dragon Security Systems”
I had come to know Simon Cole, an engineer with Modern Alarms and I suggested that he might like to join me in the formation of the company, I would provide the finance, contracting and business knowledge and Simon would provide the technical expertise required. In July 1989 Dragon Security Systems was born.
Since that time the company has grown from an empty order book to having completed over 3500 installations throughout Norfolk, Suffolk & Cambridgeshire.
Simon was born in Sussex and educated in Greenwich, South London. After leaving school, Simon undertook an apprenticeship with International Telephones in central London. Here he had many responsibilities, including overseeing the installation of equipment in a new international switching centre next to Cannon Street Station. Simon then took a sideways step and became a training officer.
Simon left the GPO to work for Chubb Alarms in 1977, where his duties involved installing intruder alarm systems, CCTV and access control in the Greater London and surrounding areas. Here, he was responsible for numerous interesting installations including The Tower of London, Jewel House and the clipper Cutty Sark, together with Gypsy Moth 4, both of which were in dry dock at Greenwich. During his career, Simon has worked on a huge range of projects; from West End mansions to wine warehouses, from banks to care homes. Since then, Simon has been involved in installing large CCTV systems for Norwich Corrugated Board and Dow Chemicals at King’s Lynn, as well as the installation of intruder, personal attack, CCTV and access control to a remote CCTV monitoring centre in Gloucestershire.
Soon Simon realised that he could never stay a “townie” and so in 1979 he relocated with his wife to Norfolk, still working for Chubb.
In the years that followed Simon was employed by Security Alarm Systems in Norwich, working his way up to become Engineering Manager. Modern Alarms (now ADT) provided even more varied work and a widening of his experience.
Whilst at Modern Alarms Simon met Richard Lawrie – in 1989 the two joined forces and Dragon Security Systems was born. For the first 2 months of its existence, Dragon Security Systems was a subcontractor of Modern Alarms, allowing Simon to complete a large security system which he had started at The Forensic Science Laboratories in Huntingdon.
The years that followed have been very exciting for Simon and for the company, with the progress of technology including IP CCTV and wireless networking. Training courses with Mobotix, one of the largest developers and manufacturers of IP-based CCTV, have allowed Simon to design wireless CCTV systems for Beccles Town centre and Vision Park at Histon near Cambridge. These projects thus avoided the expense and disruption of digging up roads to lay cables.
Traditional technology has long been at the centre of Dragon Security Systems. Simon has BS7036 training, the standard for safety devices on automatic doors and barriers. This has allowed the company to install and maintain such systems for housing associations and Norfolk Constabulary, as well as other commercial and domestic clients.
During the year 2000, Simon project-managed the installation of CCTV access control and intruder alarms into “The Forum” in Norwich. This ambitious project included the laying of approximately 2 kilometres of cable and some bespoke fabrication that allowed the systems to meet the requirements of an exacting design concept. This project included daily consultation with the builder and M&E contractor, as well as working closely with the architects on the team.
Another interesting project undertaken by Dragon Security Systems was to design and produce comprehensive installation manuals required for an intruder and personal attack alarm system which was to be installed in two buildings for an oil-related company in Nigeria. The system had to alert security staff and automatically activate flood lighting around the compound in case of intruders.For this project, Dragon Security Systems also provided all the necessary materials.
More recently and following various training courses, Simon has earned qualifications in fire design, installation/commissioning and maintenance, contributing to Dragon Security Systems’ BAFE Fire Systems Installer accreditation.
Outside of work, Simon is an active member of his local community. He has been a member of the local Parish Council for a number of years, and in 2012 he was elected chairman. He is also Chairman of a Trust and of a local registered charity that has been raising money for projects and organisations in the local area since the mid 1960s.
John has worked in the security field since 1978, starting out as a Burglary Risk Assessment Surveyor for the Norwich Union Insurance Company. During this first part of his career, John was able to accumulate valuable knowledge about the crime prevention and protection markets. Over time, John’s knowledge and enthusiasm helped him to progress within the security industry, as he moved over to security installations. Here, his former experience helped John to build strong relationships with both insurers and clients. John has extensive training in the planning and installation of intruder alarms, access control, CCTV/IPTV and fire extinguishing systems. He also has experience of sales surveying and regional management, as he has worked for many renowned companies such as Deacon Security, Group 4 Electronics Division, Britannia Security, ADT and Chubb Integrated Systems. John joined Dragon Security Systems in 1991 and became a director in 2005. During his time at Dragon Security Systems, John has been instrumental in obtaining security projects in prisons, town centre CCTV Schemes, pharmaceutical factories, Camelot National Lottery HQ, Customs and Excise and The Millennium Library in Norwich (now known as “The Forum”) to name but a few. Many of these projects were in excess of £350K in value. One of John’s major attributes is his ability to tailor systems to meet client’s requirements and needs, whether they be an individual or a large commercial client. John is firm in his belief that there is no substitute for experience and knowledge as it continually provides him with a strong foundation on which to base his recommendations to clients – to this day John dedicates a lot of his time to researching the latest systems and innovations, allowing him to always be one step ahead of the curve.