December 2011 News

A quick newsletter to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and Prosperous New Year. We won’t be doing a hard sell as we’re luckily very busy and may even have to postpone our Christmas break till mid January. Those who’ve visited us at Redhill Marina will know that we don’t believe in central heating (or any heating), and we’ve been well and truly frozen – the coffee machine froze up, but it was just as well as so did the toilets.

Laying the Strictly Come Dancing parquet dance floor

Joe did bring in a couple of space heaters – not for the workers, (they just need to wear more clothes), it was to keep the lacquer line flowing. We’ve just sanded and applied four coats of lacquer to the Strictly Come Dancing Parquet dance floor which goes on tour in January – 1200 panels in half a day, which might be a new world record!
We’ve been panicking about Sparky, the fume detector canary, and worrying he may get hyperthermia, and we’d be blamed for killing him with solder fumes, so we’ve had to put extra heat into the lit floor workshop as well, but it’s kept Grumpy’s Angels happy and working well.

Sparky the canary

Save Sparky

Talking about the Angels – we can only apologise if they’ve contacted any of our customers asking for donations for the b…..y canary or extraction plant. We know the fumes won’t hurt him, but they are so uptight that they’ve started their own campaign to Save Sparky ( and are now starting to sell Save Our Sparky merchandise. They’ve even set up a web cam so they can keep an eye on him when they’re not at work, and they’re pestering for donations to buy the extractor and let Sparky off his Health and Safety duties. We’re now having to deal with hate mail from animal rights people emailing All we wanted to do was make the Health and Safety inspector consider whether the fumes really are dangerous. Our baby canary is fit and very well.
Like the rest of the country, we have been struggling to keep up with deliveries in the snow. Having spent an unpleasant night on the M20 and M25 behind 400 lorries, we then had a deadline to meet in Edinburgh. Our van had tried once and got as far as Uttoxeter, so we headed off in Joe’s trusty 4 x 4 and trailer. Despite the M1 being closed, we battled through the untreated roads of Sheffield, up the A1M and the dreaded Coldstream and A68 and arrived in Edinburgh to find the tent roof had collapsed under the weight of snow and the Spirit of Scotland Awards were cancelled. After a quick coffee and homemade shortbread by their log fire, we attempted the return journey, now in freezing fog at minus 10 degrees. 

Having been stuck for hours on the A68, we finally found that the police had closed the road, but luckily the British spirit came out in lots of stranded motorists who helped unhook our trailer and turn us round, and a convoy of the bravest set out cross country through deep snow and we eventually got home the next day with our reputation for not letting a customer down still intact.

There’s no special offer this month – we can’t afford special offers AND Christmas shut down holiday pay.

Aluminium chair

We’re still offering the ridiculously priced aluminium Cheltenham type chairs, any colour frame,  at £22.50 including the seat pad, and we’ve discounted several folding bar counters with varying dents and scrapes courtesy of TNT. We’ve also got a once used black and white tent floor, 16ft x 16ft with edging in a trolley for £1500 plus VAT.

Tip of the Day – if we send you anything by TNT or other carrier, if you don’t have time to unpack it in front of the driver, PLEASE sign as DAMAGED. If it’s not damaged, no harm done. If it is damaged, you can claim. If it’s signed as unchecked or just signed as received, they will wriggle out of paying for any damage. We hope this will cover us and maybe stop the drivers throwing heavy items off the truck.

Enough moaning for one month – have a great Christmas and a happy new year.

PS did you hear about the Cessna plane that crashed on Dublin cemetery? They’ve recovered 1500 bodies so far!


About grumpyjoes

Inventor of the "lok" floor system.
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