Neil Evans reflects on Bellgrove & Snell's amazing 125-year journey
business is not just about providing a product or service to a client, but entirely about building relationships. Looking around tonight, whether you are one of our many clients, a professional, a business partner, a main contractor, a supplier, a subcontractor, a tenant, an associate or a friend, be assured that we regard each and every one of you as a special friend whom we hold very dear to us and without whom we simply would not exist.
So thank you to all of you for your friendship and long may we continue to enjoy your company in whatever format that is.
Considering the calibre of the people present and the many apologies we received from folk who could unfortunately not make it here tonight we can honestly say that we are truly blessed with the most wonderful and genuine people who have touched our lives positively in many ways over the decades of doing business in the Eastern Cape and South Africa.
The advertorial in today's Daily Dispatch was amazing and we want to thank those of you for the wonderful support and words of congratulations - it is really most appreciated.
Whilst we were busy putting the advertorial together I asked an old friend whom we have supported over the years whether his association would be supporting us and putting in an advert.
He pondered for a while and said that presently things are a bit tough and he would need to take a rain check but they would certainly be interested in supporting us when we celebrate our next 125th celebration. So louis and the Jewish league - we look forward to seeing you here in 2142 where you can hopefully participate this time.
As you are aware, we suffered the very sad loss of Mr Snell last year after a prolonged period of ill health. Sadly our great and wonderful friend, husband to Dawn, father to Grant and Kerry, grandfather to Caroline and Alexa and a boss that we all loved dearly was called to higher service and could just not hold out to be present at this momentous occasion.
We have no doubt that he is with us in spirit tonight and looking down wishing he could be engaging with each one of us whilst imbibing in many large ones of course.
Those of us that knew and loved BT know that he was a man that was greater than life itself and is sorely missed by all of us.
Whilst our thoughts go out to the family on their loss it is certainly not all sad news because the incredible legacy BT left behind will never die and Grant, myself and our wonderful team at Bellgrove and Snell will continue to do whatever we can to continue his legacy so that his incredible contribution not just to the building industry or the many corporate clients for whom we work but also to society in general will never be forgotten.
As most of you are aware, BT was a man that had a propensity for the finer things in life most particularly high performance sports cars. 1 recall a story where one day when Grant was only a couple of years old BT went to the office only to receive a frantic telephone call a short while later from a very distraught Dawn requesting that he urgently return home.
At the time there was a painter at the house busy varnishing some timberwork. He rushed home to find young Grant who had found the pot of varnish the painter left whilst he was having his tea and decided to please his Dad and took to varnishing one of his brand new sports cars. Grant was so pleased with himself that he couldn't wait to proudly tell his Dad: Look Dadda, paint paint Dadda.
Needless to say this was a disaster.
But instead of shouting and punishing young Grant, BT praised him. And do you any of you know why he did this? He did it because he realised that even as a young boy Grant had paint in his veins and would one day be a worthy successor to carry on the proud legacy that he and his forefathers had worked so hard at Bellgrove and Snell to create and maintain.
Grant we know that your Dad would be proud of you for your forward thinking and the tremendous effort you are making to put the most advanced systems in place to ensure that Bellgrove and Snell is suitably set up to continue on to the next interesting chapter in the proud history of this company.
You have my and the entire team at Bellgrove and Snell's unconditional support to help you to continue and grow the incredible legacy that you have inherited from your father.
There is so much history about Bellgrove and Snell and the Snell family but I am not going to spend too much time giving you a history lesson, the advertorial in today's newspaper spelt out a lot about the company over the past 125 years and Grant will come up just now and share some more of the proud family history with you.
The advertorial touched on it but am sure that many of you are probably not aware that Bellgrove and Snell was recognised officially in 1940 by the Department of Trade and Industry as being the first paint manufacturer in South Africa. They manufactured the Pinnacle Paint range which primers, top coats and epoxies were way advanced for the era in which they were being produced.
The notification came in the form of a telegram that hangs proudly in our offices. 1 am led to believe that this is not only restricted to South Africa but also the Southern Hemisphere.
There is a very apt statement that if people like you they will listen to you, but if they trust you they will do business with you.
The Snell family are compassionate, loving and a caring family whose values are based on honesty and integrity and these very values are carried through at Bellgrove and Snell and are the very ethos on which we conduct our business.
In a society where these values are sadly being eroded we are proud that at all costs we continue to maintain this value system. Am sure that you will all agree that we live in an extremely skewed society with many South Africans unfortunately living in poverty and distress.
Both the family and the company are often approached to assist needy causes and we do so willingly and will continue to do whatever we can to assist those in need.
Our message to you tonight is that every one of us can make a difference in somebody's lives because we are surrounded by people who live in the most unfortunate circumstances. So when you are called upon to assist the less fortunate I implore you to follow our example and do so.
I Bellgrove and Snell prides itself on providing the very best service and quality workmanship at a fair price to our many clients. Whilst is not always easy to accomplish perfection you can be assured that out teams try their level best to provide the support necessary to complete projects on time and to an acceptable standard.