Salisbury Linen Services chooses Ryder for fleet replacement to deliver vital laundry to hospitals across South East England


Ryder Ltd (“Ryder”), a leading independent provider of commercial vehicle contract hire, rental and maintenance services, has supplied new customer Salisbury Linen Services (SLS) with a range of DAF vehicles under a lease hire deal to meet SLS’s health service delivery requirements.

Part of the Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust, SLS provides specialist laundry and linen services for hospitals and community trusts across the South of England. The new DAF LF 150 vehicles from Ryder are being used to deliver vital laundry, including bed linen and hospital scrubs, to almost 70 different NHS and health care providers across the South East, averaging 40 drops a day.

Ryder has supplied a mix of 12-tonne and 18-tonne box rigid DAFs, which was a key component in SLS choosing Ryder. “It made sound business sense for us to have DAF vehicles as the warehouse we dispatch from is located at the same site as DAF dealer Brewers Truck Centre,” commented Anthony Proctor, operations manager at SLS.

SLS is able to have its new Ryder vehicles maintained and serviced by Brewers – a Ryder-approved maintenance provider – reducing unnecessary downtime from having to travel further afield for vehicle maintenance. “Ryder has arranged a maintenance agreement with Brewers to handle our PMIs, MOTs, breakdowns and repairs. Being on the same site as Brewers is very, very helpful,” added Proctor.

Uptime of vehicles is essential for SLS as it has critical delivery windows for its NHS clients, which was another reason for choosing Ryder. “Assurance and reliability that we will deliver the critical care goods within the agreed two- to four-hour timeframe is imperative. Ryder’s national coverage and large fleet provides us with a much-needed element of security that, if required, replacement vehicles are available up and down the country at short notice,” explained Proctor.

All of SLS’s linen is manoeuvred by cage, so Ryder has provided lock rails inside the trucks to secure the loads, along with a full vehicle livery and built-in vehicle telematics from Microlise.

“We pride ourselves on a 100% delivery window record, so being able to track the vehicles and monitor delivery window times is vital. The Microlise telematics also allows us to monitor the driving performance of our team of drivers to reduce any unnecessary costs related to tyre wear or harsh use of the accelerator, for example,” he said.

Another key factor in SLS choosing Ryder for its fleet upgrade was the addition of innovative solar technology from Ryder partner TRAILAR, that is fitted to the roof and connected to the vehicle’s battery. The harvested solar energy is used to power a range of on-board ancillaries including tail lifts, thus helping to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

“The main benefit of having TRAILAR included with these vehicles is that it aids our sustainability goals by helping to lower our carbon footprint. We aim to be as efficient as we can be and not cause any unnecessary harm to the environment, which is all part of being a good and preferred supplier to the NHS,” Proctor added.

With ongoing economic uncertainty, SLS had been looking for a vehicle provider that could provide flexibility within the contract terms – Ryder was able to meet that requirement. “A lot of providers are very rigid and one-dimensional with terms & conditions, whereas Ryder listened to our needs and came up with a contract that suited us perfectly,” said Proctor.

Ryder National Equipment Director Steve Williams commented: “We’re delighted to welcome SLS as a new Ryder customer and look forward to supporting them with all future fleet requirements. The flexibility we were able to provide in terms of the contract, vehicles and maintenance played a key part in SLS choosing Ryder for their fleet upgrade.”