New enterprise is time well spent for Stephen
WORK is ticking along nicely for Stephen Sanders who has started a clock repair business after being made redundant.
The 52-year-old, from Plymouth, started Sanders Clock Repairs this month, offering horology services to people and businesses in Plympton, Ivybridge and Kingsbridge.
He decided to try self employment after being made redundant from his job of 12 years and was referred to the Enterprise Coaching scheme, which helps people get business ideas off the ground, by Jobcentre Plus.
Having previously picked up major accolades in the world of horology, including winning the Watch and Clock Makers' Guild prize, Mr Sanders decided to put his skills to work.
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He had originally trained as a horologist in the 1980s while recovering from Hodgkin's disease.
He had a tumour removed from his spine, but it had paralysed him from the chest down and left him in a wheelchair for two years during which time he underwent radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
Mr Sanders said: "I'd been an engineer all my life but was diagnosed with Hodgkin's and had to give up my career at sea.
"I moved to the South West to attend St Loye's College in Exeter where I was trained as a horologist, as it is engineering from a wheelchair.
"I've always kept my interest in watches and clocks, even when I was working in other industries."
Enterprise Coaching is delivered by Working Links and Outset Plymouth on behalf of the European Development Fund and Plymouth City Council.
It has helped more than 1,500 people look at launching their own businesses in the past two years.
Mr Sanders said: "When people say it's hard to get back to work, they're not lying.
"I applied for lots of jobs but had little response. I even applied to one company, that had 50 jobs going, but so did 60,000 other people and I didn't even get an interview despite getting 92 per cent on the entrance exam.
"Working Links and Outset have been great. They've given me the advice, guidance and coaching I need to launch my business."
Annette Lovell, business adviser at Working Links, said: "Stephen didn't rush things and took advantage of the help and support given.
"I have visited his workshop which he has transformed from his garage. I am sure that he will do well."