Byde Heating & Plumbing Ltd.

Gas, Heating and Plumbing Specialists

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Article reproduced from The Sunday Times featuring Vince Byde of Byde Heating & Plumbing Ltd. "Aftershock" By Andrew Taylor. April 2, 2006.

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Plumbing the depths

“I was actually offered another job in the same sort of field I’d been working in,” he says. “But I would have had to retire at 60, so I would have been going through the whole job-search business all over again in a few years. This way, I’ll end up with a trade I can keep on with as long as I want,” he says.

the first spell of training ... will have cost him around £5,000, including books and tools.

He reckons the first spell of training, which he hopes to finish this summer, will have cost him around £5,000, including books and tools. After that, his college will help him find a placement while he takes the rest of the course, which will set him back another £3,000 or so. But at the end of it, he’ll have the City and Guilds and NVQ as a fully-qualified plumber. To work on gas installations, he’ll need to pass additional tests by CORGI, the Confederation for the Registration of Gas Installers – but it’s a start.

“I guess I’ll start off with a bit of part-time work for a small company, and work for myself a bit at the same time,” he says. “But the point is, in three or four years’ time, I think I’ll be quite happy and settled with new skills and a new job that I really enjoy.”

Even so, finding £8,000 must have been a hard decision? “Not really. It was partly savings, partly a bit of redundancy money. But the point was, I was investing it in myself,” he says. “It was actually the redundancy that gave me the impetus to make a choice – and now I’m doing what I really want to do.”

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