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Crew | January 2024

Connor gets a big lift from his incredible crane

Connor gets a big lift Cranebrain
  • Connor Liddle operates one of the largest mobile cranes in the UK
  • The 136-ton, 23.5-metre-long crane can lift 750 tons and is regularly used to lift bridges and tunnel boring machines
  • Connor chooses Steel Blue work boots because he’s on his feet all day and the boots are really comfy

When Connor Liddle arrives on your work site, you know about it. He’s hard to miss.

The West Yorkshireman will be at the wheel of a 136-ton, 23.5-metre-long crane—the LTM 1750.

Connor works for Mammoet, the world’s largest heavy lift and transportation company, and the LTM 1750 is the largest mobile crane in the company’s UK fleet. With a vehicle so unwieldy, even getting it to a site in the first place requires a lot of skill and careful planning.

“Every job that we go to we have to get in touch with all the local councils and police forces and everything, and then they have to put a Movement Order in place,” Connor said. “So, the route to the job will be pre-planned from the yard, and when we get the job sheet and the route, we have to follow every road specifically. We can’t divert from the route.”

Connor could be working on jobs anywhere across the UK. He goes wherever the crane is needed.

Do you even lift, bro?

Once it’s onsite and set up, the crane can lift loads weighing up to 750 tons. The main boom is 53 meters long and the luffing jib is 91 meters. It also has five and 10-metre boom extensions. Connor said the kinds of loads he’s lifting can vary.

“We’ve lifted tunnel boring machines,” he said. “We do component installations—so loading out onto ships. We do a lot of transformers—unloading and offloading on ships as well. We do the odd wind turbine. We’ve done a lot of air con units as well, on the luffer, on big warehouses for companies like Amazon. We do a lot of bridges, too.”

Connor said the reason clients request such a large crane could be the weight, the height or the reach of the lift needed.


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A family of crane drivers

Crane driving is in the blood for Connor.

“It’s a very family-oriented industry,” he said. “My Dad has done it for 30 years. He actually got me a foot in the door at a small crane company, so that’s how I got into it. But since I was a kid I’ve always wanted to do it. I’ve been doing it for eight years now.”

Connor’s father also used to work for Mammoet and used to drive the 1,200 ton capacity LTM 11200 mobile crane—the largest crane made by Liebherr. Connor’s brother is also a crane driver.

It’s a job Connor says he loves.

“I’ve always liked the thought of working with the big machinery, including building them,” he said. “It’s not just the operating I enjoy. I like actually putting the cranes together. When you finish your day’s work and you look up and you say, ‘Yeah, I’ve built that’… I’ve always wanted that gratification. That’s the thing that really enticed me into getting into it, to be honest.”

See more of what Connor is up to on his Instagram or YouTube.

Crane Operator Shoes

Why Connor wears Steel Blue work boots

Since Connor bought his first pair of Steel Blue work boots he can’t get enough. “They’re genuinely amazing boots”, he said. “I can do a 14- or 15-hour day and at the end of the day, my feet still feel like they could go for another 12 hours.

“They don’t feel like a safety boot to me; they feel like walking boots. They’re a really comfy pair of boots, which is important when you’re on your feet all day.”

Connor chooses to wear Steel Blue’s Southern Cross® work boot in Slate with 100% Comfort Guarantee.

Head to your local Steel Blue distributor to discover work boots that are a mark of true skill, or shop online.

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