With the questions surrounding the future of heat rumbling on, a concerning number of poor, and quite frankly dangerous, installations continuing to be found, questions over training standards and apprenticeship opportunities, and a whole lot more besides, this industry isn’t always the most straightforward to be part of. Ultimately, engineers have a lot to contend with, notwithstanding the pressures of earning a living to look after themselves and their family.
Despite this, installers up and down the country continue to step up to the plate. In the most recent of a long line of ‘feel-good’ stories, tradespeople were called upon to raise money for a plumber in need. Simon Antonelli was diagnosed with cancer back in April. To add to his mounting problems, Simon was having little luck in sourcing a buyer for his much loved van and tools.
Once this was brought to the attention of the plumbing community, a GoFundMe page was set up and promoted heavily across social media – the target of £20,000 was set. Within 10 days, the target had been met. Installers, manufacturers and industry representatives all donated in their droves. Sadly, Simon lost his battle with cancer in August shortly after receiving the money raised.
We weren’t exactly shocked at the generosity shown; as onlookers we see this time and time again. Whether it’s the Heat for Good team taking time out of their weekends to install a free heating system to a community rugby club in Bradford, or countless tales of engineers helping out some of the most vulnerable in society, this industry really should be proud of itself. And that’s not to mention all the work we don’t hear about from those who stay under the radar.
Manufacturers and merchants must take their deserved credit, too. There are simply too many stories of companies raising money for worthy causes – often with the support of their installer communities, we should add – for us to run all of them, but they do it. A lot. And in the case of Simon’s cause, some even arranged for installers to convert loyalty scheme points into donations.
Every sector has its bad days, but not many would be able to raise such a substantial sum of money so quickly, all to help someone most have never met. A round of applause must go to you all, keep up the good work!