Alford auto man retires after 35 years

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It was the end of an era on Friday last, when Derek Chapman of Alford closed its doors for the last time.

Operating from premises in Alford town centre, next to The George public house, the business has provided vehicle body, mechanical and servicing repairs since 1977.

Having moved to Alford in 1972 Derek began working at Bilsby Garage before achieving his ambition to run his own business.

Over three decades the business has adapted many times, starting off with mainly body repairs, later doing a strong trade in tyres and, for 16 years, operating a Practical Car Rental franchise. During this time he also specialised in restoring vintage and cherished cars.

Derek also played an active part in the community as well as raising three sons.

Now retiring to Sutton-on-Sea, where he owns a local newsagents, Derek said : “I’m sad to be leaving after all this time but I need to focus my time on my other business and hopefully take life a little easier. I still hope to find someone to take over the garage in some way or another. My customers have been very loyal and supportive over many years. It’s been a pleasure meeting them.”