Robert the Refereeing Engineer

Robert the Refereeing Engineer Public 1

We heard on the grapevine that one of our design engineers had some exciting news to share with us, we got hold of Robert Peacock so he could blow the whistle on his news.

What exactly does your role involve at Allied?

I am focused on new product development and contributing to the range of features Allied Vehicles wheelchair accessible vehicles (WAVs) can offer. Day-to-day, I design sheet-metal components, plastic parts and fabrications as well as tooling to aid production and contributing to Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs).

What have you been up to over the lockdown period?

I’ve been working from home throughout lockdown so that’s kept me very busy. At the evenings and weekends, I’ve been out cycling and running as much as I can trying to keep fit. Like everyone else I’ve over-indulged in Netflix and taken part in my fair share of Zoom quizzes.

We heard from a little bird you’re a football referee. How long have you been refereeing?

Around five years.

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What do you enjoy about being a referee?

I always played football growing up but refereeing has given me a chance to be involved at a higher level than I had the ability to play at. There’s a lot more to refereeing than what people see too – it’s very social. I’ve made a lot of friends through refereeing and we all train together and hang out together outside of football. I’d also say it’s a great way to keep fit.

What’s the hardest part about being a referee?

There can be a lot of pressure on you, especially in local derbies or when teams are competing for league titles. In games like these, tempers can boil over and players, fans and coaches can become aggressive. You have to remain calm and trust your ability. Of course some people aren’t going to like the decisions you make but you have to manage these situations and defuse them as best you can.

Do any of your refereeing skills come in handy at work?

Definitely, a lot of the skills are transferable. Refereeing teaches you good discipline, organisation and management skills. Also, once you’re used to having 100+ people shouting at you during in a game, presenting in front of your colleagues at work doesn’t seem so bad.

I hear you have some exciting news about a refereeing promotion?

That’s right, I’ve been promoted to Category 3 and now join the Senior List of Referees. I’ll now be able to referee up to the Lowland League as well as be an Assistant Referee in the SPFL Championship, League One and League Two.

What was involved in getting to the senior list of referees?

A lot of hard work! Over the past few years, I’ve been watched 10+ times per season by SFA Advisors and Observers. The most important part is getting good marks in your Observations. But there’s a lot of fitness tests throughout the season and you’re expected to train independently to maintain a high level of fitness. On top of that, the SFA run training days and meetings throughout the year where we do physical sessions and discuss video clips.

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Which games are you most excited about being involved in?

To begin with, I will be an Assistant Referee in League One and Two. You want to officiate in front of big crowds and there’s lots of teams with good supports. It would be great to be involved in a Partick Thistle or Falkirk game. It will also be interesting to travel to different parts of the country. I’ve never had a reason to go to Elgin, Montrose or Peterhead before.

Can you explain the offside rule in less than 100 words?

An attacker is in an offside position if they are in the opponent’s half and closer to the opponent’s goal than the second last defender.  When in this position, the attacker will be penalised for offside if they interfere with play, interfere with an opponent, or gain any other advantage by being there. Simple eh?