Scotland Ash News
18th January 2018
You have the right to bring you car to your local… garage
“It’s perhaps an understatement to say there’s been a lot of change this year, but it sets up the prospects of an interesting 2018 at least.
As the largest courtesy car fleet in Oxfordshire, we’ve enjoyed a busy year. And of course, we’ve seen a fast pace in development dictated by the trade through a relentless amount of consolidation and acquisitions. Is this just the tip of the iceberg as we head into 2018 I wonder?
Last year I highlighted the issue with consumers succumbing to poor main dealer standards. That still stands as being very much an issue we as an independent garage continue to tackle, moving in to next year.
More than ever, we need to hit home the message to our customers regarding Block Exemption. The number of consumers, who still believe taking their car to their main dealer when a problem arises on their vehicle as being the only option, is staggering. Whether this is due to a lack of awareness regarding choice and their rights, or due to a lack of trust with their local garage, it is our responsibility – and priority – to ensure that the level of trust is there. A rise in poor main dealer servicing standards is killing the trade’s reputation and so we must be proactive.
It is encouraging to see the IAAF’s Right2Choose campaign that is promoting the message to motorists. This champions our cause and we all must lend our voice to this campaign particularly as we head into 2018.
We are also seeing a trend in the market for more vehicle rentals, for some a preferred option to owning a car and being ‘burdened’ with the responsibility of taking it in for a service. Consumers are becoming more detached from their vehicle than ever before. The demands of modern life may be a factor, but garages need to focus more on customer convenience to help deter more numbers. We need to make the customer experience as best and as stress-free as possible – I’m talking improved customer service, excellent communication, more availability and slicker efficiency.
A marketing strategy, however basic, is essential – it should incorporate newsletters and social media in that mix. Again, this harks back to my comments regarding building trust. I know that we face daily challenges managing our own time, but we need to wherever we can deploy more effort now for the sake of longer-term customer relations and business objectives, to retain not just our existing customers but also generate new ones.”
Peter Welch, Scotlands Ash Garage
16th January 2018
Scotlands Ash Garage Newsletter (Winter 2018)
Please CLICK HERE to download the latest version of The Toolbox, the quarterly newsletter brought to you by Scotlands Ash Garage
11th January 2018
BTCC legend Colin Turkington signs deal with TerraClean in 2018
Randstad, via its engine decarbonising brand TerraClean, has extended its partnership with double British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) champion Colin Turkington for the third year running, further strengthening its ties with motorsport.
Turkington enjoyed another successful season last year with TerraClean’s full support, just missing out on being crowned 2017 champion after being forced to retire in the final race and finishing second in the drivers’ overall standings.
Turkington said: “I’m delighted to be brand ambassador for TerraClean once again and I am thoroughly relishing the prospect of a new season working with them. The nationwide network of TerraClean service centres are extremely supportive of myself and the team and have a presence at every race weekend.”
Phillip Dowd, Randstad sales director, said: “With around 40,000 track-side crowds and live coverage on ITV4, the BTCC offers us a great platform for brand exposure and the best all-round package for building awareness of our growing network of TerraClean service centres. What’s more, we’re delighted to be once again supporting such a renowned champion as Colin, and we wish him every success for 2018.”
Turkington will once again be competing for Team BMW when the new season kicks off at Brands Hatch on 8 April.
9th November 2017
TerraClean 2017 conference ‘buzz’ fuelled by network growth
Randstad Ltd has held its annual TerraClean conference, which brought together service centres to network, exchange ideas and opinions and ultimately consult on the brand’s numerous marketing plans in 2018.
The network, which now boasts hundreds of independently owned garages and mobile engineers, had to be relocated to a new venue this year to accommodate the increasing number of service centres wishing to attend.
Held at the Marriot hotel, Gosforth Park, this year’s conference focused on TerraClean marketing in 2018. Following in-depth consultation and debate, each service centre was given the opportunity to vote for their preferred marketing activity. More details to be announced soon. In the evening, service centres continued networking while being treated to an excellent three course meal and a comedy themed event with three comedians performing on stage.
Phillip Dowd, Randstad sales director, said: “The event was one of the liveliest and most engaging yet, thanks to the TerraClean network now being firmly established as one of the largest and prominent networks in the automotive aftermarket.
“It was great to hear service centres’ passion for the TerraClean brand and how collectively they want to push it forward in 2018. Our activity, across many platforms, is designed to do just that. What’s more, we recognise that our conference is about bringing together like-minded businesses with the ability to network at an event like no other. Independent garages face considerable pressures and so the fact that they can share their experiences with fellow garages under the TerraClean umbrella demonstrates how tight-knit a network we have become.”
Peter Welch of TerraClean Service Centre, Scotlands Ash Garage, Didcot said: “It’s really encouraging to see growing numbers joining the TerraClean network year on year, and this year’s event proved to be no exception. No other supplier goes to the lengths that Randstad does; through these meet-ups you always get a clear sense of the effort it puts in to driving business into our workshop.”
12th October 2017
Auto electrical specialist joins Scotlands Ash Garage
Scotlands Ash Garage, based in Didcot, has appointed Andrew Jubber in the new position of auto electrical specialist and vehicle technician.
Andrew has extensive experience in the motor trade having entered the industry in 1983 before going self-employed as a mobile auto electrical technician in 2001.
He is skilled in car, commercial vehicle and marine and joins the award-winning garage with a view to ensuring the business remains ahead of the competition when it comes to diagnosing and repairing electrical faults on modern vehicles.
Andrew said: “I’ve known Peter Welch for nearly 30 years, so when the opportunity came to join the team I couldn’t say no. The business is incredibly forward thinking and with the amount of electrical content on vehicles increasing dramatically, I am here to ensure we maintain our reputation of being a leading garage that can service and repair modern vehicles.”
Peter Welch, Scotland’s Ash Garage proprietor, said: “We’re delighted to have Andrew on board. He has a wealth of experience that will complement the team. In addition to our investment in the latest tools and equipment, we also invest in our people and Andrew has now undertaken his MOT testing accreditations.”
26th September 2017
Colin Turkington set for thrilling finale of BTCC championship
Colin Turkington will head to the final race weekend of the 2017 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship at Brands Hatch in a head to head battle for the title.
Just 10 points cover championship leader Ash Sutton and TerraClean ambassador Colin Turkington following a frenetic race weekend at Silverstone. The championship finale at Brands Hatch takes place from 30 September to 1 October 2017.
In the first two races on Sunday 17 September at Silverstone, the BMW driver pulled out all the stops to ensure he out-scored his rivals. Turkington edged his way up the field from 8th to 4th in race 1 and made his way up to P3 in the opening laps of Race 2. Despite a last corner attempt at usurping him from the podium, Colin eventually claimed 3rd.
Race 3 was an unfortunate end to the day, as contact on lap 1 saw Colin spinning off the track before re-joining in P21. The BMW 125i M Sport suffered heavy damage that forced a visit to the pits for repairs. Turkington emerged to finish the race in P22, scoring valuable manufacturer points.
Turkington said: “Learning to deal with the ups and downs is all is par for the course in the BTCC and over the years I’ve learnt how to manage it and turn the frustrations into a positive. There isn’t time to lick our wounds from race 3 – we’re fully focused on the ultimate goal. It’s game on!
“Brands Hatch GP is one of my favourite circuits and one where I’ve enjoyed huge success in the past with BMW and West Surrey Racing. I have full confidence in Team BMW, the 1 Series and myself that we can do this. Second place is not an option for me.”
Phillip Dowd, Randstad Ltd sales director, UK home of the TerraClean brand, said: “It is all set to be a thrilling finale to the BTCC season and the entire TerraClean family is behind Colin as he bids for a third championship title.”
7th September 2017
TerraClean’s Colin Turkington targets third BTCC championship
TerraClean ambassador and double BTCC champion, Colin Turkington, has placed himself in contention for a third championship, lying second in the standings with just two events to go.
Turkington’s consistency has shone through recently, recording three top 6 finishes in the most recent races to keep him firmly in the fight for the 2017 crown. He is the only driver to have qualified in the top five at every event so far and continues to exercise his impeccable ‘clean and fast’ racing technique.
Driving for Team BMW and WSR in the 125i M Sport, Turkington is quietly confident for the upcoming races at Silverstone on 16-17 September and final races of the season at Brands Hatch from 30 to 1 October.
He said: “I’ve been around long enough to know the twists and turns are far from over and I’m hoping my best spell is yet to come. I’m ruling nobody out just yet, and I’ll be doing everything in my control to continue to bring my ‘A Game’ in just over two weeks’ time.”
Phillip Dowd, Randstad Ltd sales director, UK home of the TerraClean brand, said: “The entire TerraClean service centre network is behind Colin with two events left this season. He has made time in his busy schedule to attend our awards and karting event and this has made him a very popular member of the TerraClean family.”
13th July 2017
Didcot dad awarded for resilience during difficult time
Peter Welch, proprietor of Scotlands Ash Garage, has gone through a tough time over the past few years, for which he was commended for at the TerraClean Awards 2016, held at Holiday Inn Northumberland,, achieving the ‘Above and Beyond’ award.
For Peter, a further surprise lay in store at the event as he was joined on stage by wife Ruth and daughter Libby, who made the trip to the event without Peter knowing. Libby was diagnosed with a nerve sheath tumour at the age of just 20 and is recovering well. Meanwhile, Peter was diagnosed with prostate cancer and is also recovering well. The award acknowledged the incredible journey the family had taken.
Scotlands Ash Garage proprietor, Peter Welch, said: “My complete gratitude goes to TerraClean for this award and for the constant support I have received during this tough period from family, friends and customers.”
Phill Dowd, Randstad (TerraClean) sales manager, said: “Despite the difficult situation, Peter has always remained positive and simply grateful that he had been given the opportunity to allow for early treatment. He took inspiration from his family and battled cancer head-on. We were thrilled to present the ‘Above and Beyond’ award to such a brave and hardworking member of the TerraClean family.”
Welch’s family-run garage is a well-known contributor to the Didcot community with the garage regularly sponsoring local events such as Astonbury, as well as local football team, Wallingford Town FC. The garage is also an active fundraiser, donating £1 for every MOT it carries out to the Teenage Cancer Trust. In 2016, the garage donated more than £2000 to the charity and has carried on the initiative into 2017.
11th July 2017
Fundraising for Teenage Cancer Trust – Update
In March April and May 2017 we have raised £492.08p for the Teenage Cancer trust, this is through a collection box and donating £1 from every MOT carried out!
Thank you to everyone who has donated!
The total amount raised is £3,466.18 up to the end of May 2017.
We will keep you informed of our ongoing progress. Look out for updates.