COVID-19 Team Blog: Phil Coggins

07 May 2020

2 minutes to read.

We’re proud of what our teams are achieving at Carpenters during the coronavirus pandemic. Written by colleagues across multiple divisions of the company, they hopefully provide a small insight into our continuing working practices and values as we all adjust to our new world.

Here is the third in the series from our Bikers for Bikers Team Manager, Phil Coggins.


Joys of being a biker

“The joys of owning a motorbike are simple. When riding it, the adrenalin rush is difficult to control, and few things come close. There are however many downsides to riding a bike in the wind, rain, cold, traffic and now Covid-19.

When I look out of my window and see beautiful blue skies and empty roads, I can’t help feeling it’s just a little unfair. Bikers’ forums are full of pictures of bikes polished to within an inch of their life, but the chat revolves around detailing, rather than riding them. If the sun shines on the day the lockdown is lifted, it will be like the start of Le Mans out there (which should keep us busy in the Bikers team at Carpenters!).

As Head of our Bikers for Bikers team my day used to start with riding my bike to work. The noise of my bike coming into the carpark would alert any of the team who are already in of my arrival, and the benefit of this is that I usually have a nice hot drink waiting for me (thanks Helen!). The rest of the team will turn up one by one and when Jan arrives, another hot drink shortly follows! I am now ready for whatever the day will throw at me.

We enjoy working as a team of bikers. Having group discussions over cases and reviewing dashcam footage makes our jobs more enjoyable, although as bikers ourselves, we have a grounded view of life having seen some of the injuries that occur in bike accidents. Once the day is over its back to the adrenalin rush of the ride home.

As with most of us, my working life for the time being is so different. My wife and son are both key workers and are up and out by 8am leaving me with just our 15-year-old Jack Russell, Millie, for company. All she does is sleep!

I have had to relearn how to use a kettle and the nearest to conversation I get is listening to Millie snoring. But I soon immerse myself into work, starting with a quick post on the “Sofas for bikers” WhatsApp group to catch up with the team. Although we’ve ably managed to stay on top of our workload remotely, the consensus is that everyone cannot wait to get back to the office. We all miss the social aspect of working life – and of course the bike ride to and from work.

But it is what it is, and we all have to knuckle down and help our country through this unprecedented time. Then we can get back out there and hit those apexes! I cannot wait."

About the author 

Phil Coggins, Manager of the Bikers for Bikers team

Phil joined Carpenters Group back in 2008 and after a number of promotions, became the Bikers for Bikers Team Manager in 2018. He manages a team of bikers who specialise in motorcyclists claims with a wealth of experience between them.

Phil has 19 years in the legal industry and 20 years as a motor mechanic prior to that. He passed his bike test in 2005 as a means of commuting to Liverpool each day and currently rides a Triumph Street Triple.

Phil Coggins - Team Manager