Meet Russell Waller, Head of Buildings and Services, who celebrates 15 years at Trinity Hall this year
From major projects like the Dining Hall renovation to freeing the odd bike from a frozen lock, Russell Waller has (over)seen it all during his time at the College.
What does your team do and how many of them are there?
The team handle reactive repairs, routine property inspections, planned maintenance tasks and small-scale upgrades; along with freeing the odd bicycle from a seized lock!
We are a team of 12, with representation of multiple disciplines (electricians, plumbers, carpenters, decorators and handymen) plus a supervisor and me. The team is divided equally between Central Site/ Thompson’s Lane and Wychfield, ensuring representation across the different locations.
Can you briefly describe what your job entails?
I bear responsibility for the day-to-day management of Maintenance team activities which include planned and reactive maintenance, routine inspections and general maintenance tasks, including ensuring our buildings comply with all relevant regulations; along with identifying, planning, procuring and managing upgrades of varying types and value; and overseeing design and specification for any new construction projects of operational College property.
What memorable moments have there been in the past 15 years?
Too many to remember and many of them for all the wrong reasons! The most memorable are usually crises due to failures of services or inclement weather conditions. One of the more positive ones that sticks in the memory, was an unscheduled visit to the College by the Dalai Lama.
What are you most proud of?
In a work context, the overall positive contribution that Maintenance team make to College which (hopefully) benefits all College members. We have carried out some interesting and challenging upgrades over the last 15 years, both in residential staircases and public rooms. One that was particularly rewarding was the refurbishment of the Dining Hall, which was sympathetically improved from an acoustic, lighting and heating perspective, without any loss of its historical fabric.
What did you do before you came to Trinity Hall?
I worked in the construction industry for a medium-sized regional contractor for 18 years with the last five or so years as a site-based project manager, undertaking the construction or refurbishment of offices, hotels, schools and college buildings.
Best part of working for the College?
The people and the beautiful surroundings.
What’s your favourite building in the estate and why?
I don’t really have a favourite, as I am drawn to different buildings for different reasons. From a design perspective: the Wychfield New-Build accommodation is very well-considered and is wearing particularly well. But for their aesthetics and history: the historic buildings at Central Site.