Thanks to the government’s new ‘right to repair’ rules, manufacturers are required to make spare parts available to consumers buying white goods and electrical appliances – meaning products like washing machines and fridges will be easier to repair and more efficient to run.
The new rules are a step forward for buyers and the environment, aiming to extend the lifespan of white goods and electrical appliances by up to 10 years.
It comes as good news for Gillman’s too – a Gloucester-based family firm which started life as a repairs business in 1969. And despite becoming hugely successful in retail, with a £70-plus million turnover and over 230 staff, it has never stopped offering the service.
Which sees it well-placed to serve an expected growth market its sector, as the practice of repairing washing machines, fridges, freezers, cookers and more becomes more commonplace.
‘At the moment we have 26 service engineers. They serve the county and the general public. Everything we supply from our main retail shop we can repair,’ said service centre manager John Gillman, whose grandparents founded the family firm.
‘We also have commercial engineers that look after the likes of nursing homes and hotels – not quite nationwide, but almost.’
The most recent available figures for its Domestic Appliances Online (DAD) business show that it distributed more than 400,000 appliances across the UK in 2018, including brands such as Hoover, Miele, Zanussi, Bosch, Siemens, Beko, Hotpoint and its own Montpellier brand.
Mr Gillman continued: ‘We have what is called a T11 licence to repair. Many don’t. Importantly we have working relationships with many of the major brands. If you do not have access to their software, you simply cannot diagnose and repair their products properly. We can.
‘People’s mindsets were already changing, but we are expecting it to become a much bigger market for us. We think it is a positive message for everyone – environmentally, for the customer and for ourselves.’
According to the government, the new ‘right to repair’ rules will save consumers £75 a year; white goods will be cheaper; and the environment will benefit from less waste.
For more information about Gillman’s, visit gillmans.co.uk.
This article is part of SoGlos’s #BackToBusinessGlos campaign – made possible by Hazlewoods, Aston Lark and BPE – to champion Gloucestershire businesses as the county recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic. For more information, see soglos.com/backtobusinessglos