I have always found mans ability to achieve movement from materials mesmerising. I attended boarding school in rural Scotland, where I was told I had an aptitude for academia, but I knew I didn't have an appetite for it. I went to university to study mechanical engineering and I found this to be too much about abstract maths and not enough getting my hands dirty. So I left.
I was visting a Sunday Scramble event at Bicester Heritage, when I saw a stand for Heritage Skills Academy inside one of the carefully restored old buildings. That was the day I signed up for a course in Classic Vehicle restoration at Bicester Heritage. I sent my sparse CV to several business I thought I would enjoy and went on a few tester days. Despite my lack of experience, I was offered an apprenticeship at McGrath Maserati.
I have now been at McGrath for 2 years and I couldn't be any more appreciative of the chance that Andy Heywood has given me. The knowledge that these guys possess is amazing. Its a great feeling doing something I really want to do, rather than something I feel I should be doing. I also feel like I'm perpetuating skills and know how which otherwise might be lost in a few generations time.
On a day to day basis I am responsible for helping in any way I can and soaking up as much wisdom as I can. The variety is exciting and the attention to detail humbling.
I learn new skills, techniques and information everyday.
My limited exposure to mechanics until my 20s didn't stop me from finding an apprenticeship, in fact a blank slate can be a good thing. If you are reading this I would advise you to check out apprenticeships in Classic Vehicle Restoration in your area.