Former colleagues back in business
FORMER colleagues at the Hunters Land Rover dealership in Ipswich have launched their own business. When Hunters Land Rover in Norwich Road was closed by owners Inchcape plc at the turn of the year it was the end of an era for many of the long-standing employees.
FORMER colleagues at the Hunters Land Rover dealership in Ipswich have launched their own business.
When Hunters Land Rover in Norwich Road was closed by owners Inchcape plc at the turn of the year it was the end of an era for many of the long-standing employees.
Many had worked for the previous business, Lindacre, and they all faced Christmas with an uncertain future after the December closure announcement.
Now eleven of those staff have launched their own business offering a service centre specialising in Land Rover for Ipswich and the surrounding areas.
Managing director is Greg Rashbrook, and his wife Alex is also working in the new business, Lindacre Service Centre, Farthing Road.
Greg was dealer principal for Hunters (Inchcape) in Ipswich and previously had 12 years with Lind Automotive Group and 22 years with the Lancaster Group in a life in the motor trade.
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“We have invested in the new business,” he said. “Everybody will be doing some multi-tasking.
“It is something we probably wouldn't have done without this opportunity coming along. It is exciting and it is fun and it is a tremendous challenge.
“There is tremendous pride in these people and in this new business and many years of experience. Our workshop manager Graham Milbourne has 37 years in the industry at Mann Egerton, Lindacre and Hunters, for example.
“We have the specialist skills in the workshop team and other departments.We want people to get the same levels of service and commitment at a more competitive price. Our customers have been very supportive since they heard what we trying to do
“We have launched our own website too, www.lindacre.co.uk which tells people what we are about, and customers can leave their blogs on it,” he said. “We have written to previous customers and they are already beginning to find us.”
Alex added: “It is an exciting but scary time too. Everybody is a key person in this business.”
The team have been busy decorating and preparing their new home and have installed around �200,000 worth of specialist Land Rove tools, diagnostic and other equipment, and ramps which they have bought from Inchcape and moved from Norwich Road.
They would now be applying to be audited in order to become an Approved Land Rover Service Centre, he explained.
“We were pleased Inchcape allowed us to buy the equipment. Our workshop equipment includes very specialist four wheel drive alignment and our ramps are for four wheel drive vehicles too.”
Parts director Glenn Bardwell-Doughty said: “We can offer outstanding levels of customer service. We are effectively a co-operative.
“Everybody has got an interest in the business succeeding and our number one priority is to offer customers unrivalled levels of service.
“This is a good location too so close to the A14 sugar beet factory junction. Ipswich needs Land Rover in it.”
Sales director David Chenery added: “Hunters was part of a big PLC. We have unrivalled knowledge of our customers, built up over the years, and we are trying to buck the trend and bring it back to a local level.
“We have all the contacts and can offer sales, and broker finance for customers. This is a more personal business.”
Lindacre Service Centre already has its first customers' cars in the workshop.
For more information call 01473 461751.