Well, we had hoped that the New Year would bring a brighter outlook, but just as we were dusting off the computer in the office, and planning 2021, we went into another national lockdown. After hours of scrutinizing the UK government's regulations, we are confidant that as a 'business providing repair services' we are allowed to remain open. So from Wednesday 6th January we will be opening our gates, and hoping that at some point, all our loyal customers will be actually able to go away in the caravans and motorhomes.
Last week, after being a seller on ebay since 2006, we had to take the hard decision to stop selling on the site. Ebay has been a great source of income over the years, and had helped us through the quiet Winter months, but sadly due to many reasons we have chosen to no longer sell on there. We are instead, going to concentrate on updating our own online shop, and keeping that up to date with offers and new products.
Last September we counted the money in the Help for Heroes collection box,
so it seemed an appropriate time to repeat the process.
Last year we collected £18.51, this year it was £26.67.
We rounded it up to £20 last year, but with family donations this year
we will be sending £50 to the charity this weekend.
Since re-opening fully, we have been very busy with servicing, repairs, sales, etc.
We will however be taking a break over the August Bank Holiday,
mainly to do some work on the new workshop buildings, which we are still trying to finish.
I would warn all our regular, and new customers, that servicing wise,
we are very busy in September.
We are already taking bookings for 2021,
so if anyone is organised enough, please get your bookings made.
It was with a heavy heart that we had to announce to our customers that Pete's step-father had lost his battle with cancer a few days ago. He had always been happy to help around the farm collecting leaves and fallen apples, and frequently popped into the office for his favourite cup of tea. His enthusiasm for sport; especially his Liverpool football team, kept us entertained and informed.
With our near flooding, the LPG rig breaking and the Coronavirus causing us to close down; this year has turned into one that we would like to forget.
With all social distancing enforced, we still managed to have our annual Approved Workshop Scheme inspection completed yesterday, and were very happy to be told that we had passed. We are not exactly in the position that we had hoped to be; but the new workshop is up and running, and hopefully by the time of the next inspection we will have a new office and bathroom facitilies.
After this enforced lock down, we have begun to appreciate the local companies and services that are nearby. So a new section has been added to our website which we hope will give any visitors; or even neighbours, some information about the surrounding area. Hopefully we will be able to review shops, pubs, attractions and oddities as they begin to re-open on the page.
Well we are certainly back into our stride, and have plenty of caravans and motorhomes in for servicing and repair work. Our customers are certainly hopeful that they will be able to get away soon, and we also heard this week from the Caravan and Motorhome Club that some of their sites in England will re-open on 4th July. There has been a lot of interest in the Safefill bottles, and at present we have all the sizes in stock, and can re-fill bottles from our LPG rig. Gradually our suppliers are also opening, so we are confidant that life will return to some sort of normality soon.
After nearly three months shut down due to the Coronavirus, it seemed appropriate to add a blog entry now. We closed so quickly, there was no time to mention it, but having so many elderly customers, it seemed the correct action to take. As all our staff our family members, it was relatively easy to make the decision as we have become friends with our long term customers, and would never want to put them in danger.
Chris remained available to answer the phone when possible, and to keep the paperwork up to date, but from yesterday; Monday 1st June, we are fully open. We just hope that this terrible disease has not harmed any of our customers, and that we can at least help some people to get away in their caravans and motorhomes at some point this year.
As we celebrate our 20th birthday on the 30th March this year, we have started a new page on the website called history, which will celebrate what we have achieved over the last two decades. As we dig up more photos and dates, we will gradually update the page.