You can be forgiven for being confused. The names of these two organisations sound very similar. Yet they are two different and separate entities.
Many will be familiar with the initials UKPCO and may feel you know the answer to this question. However, it is not that simple!
|Shall we call it the ‘original’ UK Pest Controllers Organisation (UKPCO) was set up in 2004 by a small group of like-minded independent pest controllers who felt that if they came together they could share their expertise and equipment, help each other out and negotiate for better deals with the distributors. The group was committed to raising industry standards, supporting the RSPH/BPCA Level 2 Certificate in Pest Management qualification, as well as promoting Continuing Professional Development (CPD). Over the years, the number of members grew as did their status, which included becoming part of the UK Pest Management Alliance. Love them or loath them, but the UKPCO also ran a lively web discussion forum. All seemed rosy.
However behind the scenes it would appear not so. Late last year, Andy Beddoes (one of the original founders of UKPCO and owner of Gloustershire-based AB Complete Pest Control) with his son Sam, in effect broke away from this group and established the UK Pest Controllers. With a new smart website UK Pest Controllers has set-up its own forum, along with a post code search facility enabling members of the public to locate a pest controller close to them. To be listed, all a company has to do is pay an annual fee of £35, which is mostly spent on website optimisation and advertising. Interesting, at the moment, in some geographic areas, the first pest controller the search throws-up is the British Pest Control Association.
New logo for the original organisation
Newly created, UK Pest Controllers
When quizzed on this move Andy Beddoes, former chairman of the UKPCO explained: “I wanted to get back to first principles as to why we set up the original organisation – a group of independent pest controllers helping each other out. With UK Pest Controllers, there will be no committee meetings and no getting bogged down in rules and membership criteria.”
So where does this leave UKPCO? Dazed might be a good initial description. However, having dusted itself down, it too has a new smart logo and new website shortly to go live, yet its forum is already up and running – click here.
As UKPCO chairman, Adam Juson is quick to point out: “The split has certainly caused considerable confusion but nothing has really changed at the UKPCO. One member may have left and set-up a commercial venture under a remarkably similar name, yet the UKPCO remains true to its commitment to training and the raising of industry standards. In fact we are about to announce our range of 2011 in-house courses for members.”
The UKPCO”s next official move will be their AGM to be held on 19 February.