Timothy Paul Watson 1950 -2020

We have received the sad news that crane and access industry veteran and safety consultant Tim Watson passed away on Friday, following a long battle with Cancer. He would have been 70 in May.

Watson is probably best known as a safety consultant that worked for many years with both the International Powered Access Federation – IPAF – and the UK crane and heavy equipment rental association the CPA. He was responsible for drawing up numerous Best Practice Guides for the two organisations and well as working in cooperation with the Health & Safety Executive and sitting on European CEN standards setting committees and working with the UK’s Strategic Forum for Construction.
Tim Watson

He worked for many years with EPL (Elstree Plant Ltd) the crane and access rental division of UK contractor John Laing – later Laing O’Rourke. Joining the PAC division of IPAF after the original John Laing was split up. He remained with the PAC business after it was acquired by Paul Adorian in 2004. He and Adorian had worked together in the early days of EPL along with Niftylift founder Roger Bowden. EPL was a pioneer in the truck mounted lift rental business and became the first JLG dealer in the UK in the mid 1970s.
Tim Watson in action - speaking at a crane conference

Tim Watson was a gentle yet highly professional and consistent individual, combining a rare blend of practical knowledge and common sense with the understanding of the requirements for good quality standards and regulation. He was always ready to both listen to and take on board alternative views on a technical point, and at the same time highlight an aspect of your argument that you had completely missed, all in a very polite, gentle and yet firm manner. This rare combination made him highly effective when working on regulatory committees, able to bring together those with opposing views on a technical point through his logical and calm manner. He leaves behind his wife Judy.

We will update and add to this tribute later this week.


Alan McIntyre
So sad to hear about Tim's passing. I worked with him when he conducted CE examinations for my employer and also with him on the CEN EN280 working group. Always the ultimate professional, knowledgeable and extremely personable. Every day was a school day when in his company. After retiral I missed our meetings and his stories. God's blessings to his wife and family at this, and these, difficult times. Alan McIntyre

Apr 7, 2020

Very sad news
Tim was an outstanding ambassador for the industry
He has made a telling contribution, often unseen
Knowledgeable, approachable and a great communicator
He will be a sorely missed
My sincerest condolences to his family RIP
Mike Evans

Apr 7, 2020

Gianluca Ferramola
This is a great loss, both from a human and a professional point of view. I met Tim many years ago by participating in CEN's WG1; he has always been very willing to listen and always ready to provide reasonable solutions. Kind, calm and collaborative with everyone. We'll miss him.

Apr 7, 2020

What a great bloke, always happy and willing to share his vast knowledge and experience, I got to know him at EPL back in the 80's. He was definitely one of the Good Guys. R.I.P. Tim.

Apr 6, 2020

As Dave has said this is a huge loss to the industry as well as a personal loss to many of us. The work Tim has done has significantly improved the safety and working practices in our industry, which is a great legacy for us to remember him by.

Apr 6, 2020

Dave Holder
This is desperately sad news. Tim was an excellent Engineer and a thoroughly decent bloke with such a friendly manner, who always had time for any enquiries or requests I had, even the daft ones. His knowledge and expertise were available to anyone who sought information and his passing will leave a huge hole in the lifting industry. I shall miss him greatly.

Apr 6, 2020
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