Premises Rowley St House
Biography > Hills Electrical > Premises
We were always keen on trying to train new people to join the organisation. We wanted to train project managers to help with the expansion but given that we were spread across the country it was difficult to arrange training locally. So we devised a training programme in conjunction with Walsall College of technology and we had to make it possible for the trainees to live locally to do the course.
To begin with we rented a flat by Rolling Mill Street. The problem here was that the trainees were not going to be present all the time and we had to carry on paying rent although there was nobody in the flat. So I hit upon the idea of buying a house or buying some flats where we could have our trainees.
In early 2003 a house came up for sale at Rowley St in Walsall. It was a big house in terrible condition but it was divided into 2 flats and so it would be ideal for our trainees. I bought it at auction when I was the only bidder and I bid the reserve price. We then had a short period to refurb it entirely and make it habitable. Shane Clift’s company did the job and they did an excellent job in a very short time. The only issue we had was that the drive was too steep and had to be remade several times.
We all knew was that the trainees would be moving in immediately after Christmas. Although the building was complete, it wasn’t furnished and over Christmas 2003 -4 I ended up commuting back and forth to IKEA. I bought an awful lot of flat pack furniture, 8 beds, 8 wardrobes and so on. I also had to buy for 2 kitchens and 2 bathrooms. Somehow all this was a solo effort and I could get no assistance, until Shane’s men came and helped out with the build.
We used the house for the trainees and the training went successfully and they returned. With the down turn in the business there was no need for it any longer and I bought it from the company to pump some much needed cash into it.
I was then faced with the task of selling a property that was way too good for the area that it was in. I eventually ended up selling it to a guy who continually chipped at the price – until I said no more. It eventually was sold in 2008 for a small loss.