Husband-and-wife team Scott and Fran Priddey started Birmingham firm SAFGas back in 2010, and reckon they make a pretty good combination
Where did your plumbing begin, and how have you got to where you are today?
Our business started in 2010 when Scott left full-time employment and retrained as a Gas Safe engineer. I started running the office side of the business when I took the plunge and left my employment in 2013. Last year, I trained up as a Gas Safe engineer too, to give me access to all plumbing and heating opportunities that came my way.
Have you always wanted to be plumbers?
Yes and no. We both worked for a big utilities company before starting our own business. Scott worked in various areas of the company for around 18 years and I worked in the IT support team for 13 years. But one day we decided to go for it and start SAFGas Ltd as a team. It’s something Scott had always wanted to do and I went along with it. Why not?
What is your go-to-tool, the one you can’t live without, and why?
As basic as it sounds, a good old screwdriver! You can’t get into a boiler without one! Scott swears by the Wiha 26-in-1 multi-tool so he can get into anything.
What’s your best plumbing joke?
What do plumbers have when they fall asleep? Pipe dreams. Yeah, we know it’s not that great but it’s the best one we know.
Which brand of boilers do you stand by?
We’re accredited installers with Worcester Bosch but also fit Ariston and ATAG. It’s important to us that the after-sales support for the customer (and us as installers) is excellent, and we’ve found that these manufacturers offer the best support.
What’s the funniest thing that’s ever happened on a job?
Nothing out of the ordinary as yet! But there is plenty of time to come across something weird and wonderful.
How do you like your brew?
Scott: White with one sugar.
Fran: Just white for me, I’m sweet enough!
What top tip would you give to someone starting out in the industry?
To stick with it! Find a good company to work with to build your experience – the more hands-on experience you gain, the more likely you will become a brilliant tradesperson.
How do you find running a business together?
It has its ups and downs and can be stressful, but we’ve always got each other to moan at! We both have strengths that make it work – we’re a dream team.
If you were stranded on a desert island, what three things would you take with you?
Scott: My wife, a good bottle of red wine and bags of Wine Gums! Oh, and my kids of course!
Fran: Our dogs, a radio and lots of sun cream.
Who do you think make the best plumbers: men or women?
Hmm… Scott would say men and I would say women!
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