The one thing lockdown has given us is time to indulge in our passions. Forget making banana bread, the most exciting thing we’ve been able to do is work on our cars.
And if you happen to own a Volkswagen, chances are at some point you’ve ordered from Heritage Parts Centre.
“We’re in a business where people are doing something they enjoy, it’s a hobby,” says Andy Gregory, community and PR manager.
“They don’t have to be restoring a Beetle, but if people can’t go out, that’s what they start doing, buying parts and getting some kind of enjoyment.”
The firm has had a few names along the way and is now run by Barney Dines, Mark Rickard and Paul Howard, but it all began with David Ward and wife Nickie, who have since retired.
The couple met at university and heard of cheap campervans in The Netherlands, so in ’79 they hitchhiked over to start a removal business for students.
That changed when a neighbour offered to buy their £400 van for £600. David bought a train ticket to go and find another.