Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Marking a milestone

Willprint owners and managers Jan and Ian Almond flank 20-year employee Scott Almond.

Fresh out of school in 1993, Scott Almond jumped headfirst into a printing career with Shepparton Printing Company S.M. & T.A. Williams Printers (now Willprint Shepparton Pty. Ltd.).
Scott completed a four-year apprenticeship on the job with regular stints at tradeschool (RMIT) in Melbourne to obtain his trade certificate.
This year - 2013 - marks the pressroom manager's 20th year in the industry.
He is Willprint's current longest-serving employee aside from boss Ian Almond, who with wife Jan (and second Willprint boss), purchased the business from his employers, previous owners Max and Thelma Williams in 1996.
Scott said his most enjoyable moments in the past two decades included moving from 'the old tin shed' to the new factory at 51 Drummond Road, and when the four-colour printing press arrived.
When he first started the press room was running two single colour printing presses (Heidelberg GTOs), but since has also welcomed a two and four-colour press (among other large format machines that have come and gone again).
Scott, who primarly operates the four-colour Heidelberg Speedmaster, said it was great because instead of feeding the paper through four times for four separate colours, you need only feed it through once and you'll see the complete result instantly.
"It takes some of the skill out of it, but improves the quality," Scott said.
Scott said the evolution of machinery throughout the years had been the biggest change at his workplace.
For the industry, overall, however he said the most dramatic changes included the automation on printing presses, the introducation of digital printing and high-tech computers in the plate-making area, which mean no more manual cutting and paste-up.
When asked if he still saw himself at the controls of a printing press in 20 years' time he said he couldn't look that far ahead.
"It will depend on where printing goes," Scott said.
"If it goes digital I don't want to print digital...I don't like the results from it compared to what these (offset printing presses) put out."
Willprint owners Ian and Jan Almond congratulate Scott on his 20 years of service.
A presentation was held to mark the occasion in February where Scott was presented with gifts, a plaque and a mock-up newspaper front page.
- Bree Harding

A presentation was held in February to mark Scott Almond's 20 years of service to Willprint. He is pictured with bosses Ian and Jan Almond.

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