Chris Maclean: Cheating the glazier

By Chris Maclean

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Glass

When another window was smashed on Friday night I wasn't best pleased. Last time I called in the glazier from his shop 50 yards away. He came...

When another window was smashed on Friday night I wasn't best pleased. Last time I called in the glazier from his shop 50 yards away. He came promptly, fixed the small window in no time and billed me over £60. The cost of the glass was only £3. Nice work if you can get it.

This time I decided to do it myself. I measured the window, bought glass, putty, safety glasses and a special knife to remove the old stuff. Suitably dressed up I approached the task with trepidation and, despite being repeatedly interrupted by people with the most banal questions ~ "Got a broken window then?" ~ I managed to remove all the broken stuff very neatly. Then I discovered the new piece of glass was actually too small so I had to get another piece cut. The job took over an hour. It was cold and there were other things I could have been doing.

But here is the surprising bit. I enjoyed every minute of it. I had cheated the glazier out of his greedy profit and saved myself at least £40. The two new panes were next to each other and I'd defy anyone to say which was done by the professional and which was done by me. And I was awash with a self-satisfied glow of someone who had achieved something.

I am a great believer in the 'broken window' theory that suggests that when a building gets a broken window it is pretty soon before it becomes derelict and vandalised. I am often shocked when I pass pubs where something remains broken or un-replaced. The message they send me is that there is little love for the place and not much care. I hate it when I see lamps blown and gardens unkempt.

There will be some who dismiss these issues; they say that's the brewery/pubco's job and it isn't their responsibility. That may be true. But it sends out messages that the business is sliding.

There are many such jobs around the pub and I am addressing them slowly. People know things are getting better here ~ not worse. And if I can glean some smugness from it, so much for the better.

Related topics: Legislation

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