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Meet Alistair Neaves: Chair Workshop Supervisor

Following our article where we introduced the technicians and artisans who transform furniture at our award-winning Renew Centre, it’s time to take a deeper dive into those experts, and discover what they do on a day-to-day basis at Crown Workspace.

Alistair is one of the ‘originals’ at the Renew Centre, having first arrived as a fitter in 2016 – and has been responsible for rescuing and transforming thousands of chairs during that time.

“I’m not sure I could add up how many it is,” he said. “Our team probably refurbishes 50-60 chairs a day, so that gives you an idea.

“It’s a great feeling because every time you refurbish a chair everybody wins. It’s more business for us, it saves money for the client and it’s good for the environment, too.”

So, what does a regular day at the Renew Centre look like?

“It’s busy,” said Alistair. “But every day is a bit different.

“You perhaps start with making sure all the deliveries are ready and the paperwork is correct, then you look at how many chairs there are to refurbish and what will be needed.

“There are so many different types of chair. We refurbish just about anything you can sit on in an office, so that includes sofas, benches and booths, too. Each one arrives in a different state. Some will just need cleaning, others will need a totally refurb.

“Jobs can range from big orders for 300 chairs for a company like the BBC or Sky to just one or two ordered on the website for a home office.

“Sometimes we refurbish chairs sent in by the client, other times we’ll take them from our stock. But the end goal is always to make them feel like new by the end of the process. We really pride ourselves on that.”

Refurbishing a chair can include re-upholstering the seat cushion, back cushion and arm rests, cleaning and spraying the frames and repairing gas lifts, forward lifts or back lifts – before checking all the mechanisms work properly.

“There’s a lot of work but we’re a small team and we work together really well,” said Alistair. “I’m one of the originals because I’ve been here from the start and seen the company grow, so I feel a real part of it.

“There aren’t many companies who do what we do, so that’s a good feeling because we spotted a gap in the market and we’re filling it. The fact that as a company and as individuals we’re doing our bit to help the environment just makes it better.”

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Following our article where we introduced the technicians and artisans who transform furniture at our award-winning Renew Centre, it’s time to take a deeper dive into those experts, and discover what they do on a day-to-day basis at Crown Workspace.

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