Thursday 31 January 2013

Top Feedback Winners 2012

Congratulations to the team at Lockwood & Greenwood in Ashton-under-Lyne, for achieving the most customer feedbacks in the Good Garage Scheme in 2012 and are well under way to reaching a fantastic milestone of 3000 soon. Over 99% of their customers would recommend the garage and over 99% would visit them again. Customer service is key to Lockwood & Greenwood and this is obvious to their customers as well.

Not only have they won the national prize but have also picked up the North West Regional Feedback prize for the year. 
David Greenwood, Service Manager, and Brian Langton, Marketing Manager with their awards.
Congratulations to the following Good Garage Scheme member Regional Winners for 2012:

East Midlands:  R M Services, Leicestershire
East Anglia:      DLH Auto Centre, Norfolk
Scotland:          In-Tune Garage Services, Glasgow
South Wales:    Nantgarw Garage , Glamorgan
North East:       Rovetec, Stockton-on-Tees
South West:      Interpro, Bristol
North London:   Empire Garages, Middlesex
South:   Sutton MOT & Repair Centre Ltd, Surrey

Customer feedback is at the heart of the Good Garage Scheme. Since its inception in 2006, the website features over 580,000 feedbacks from previous customers, similar to other comparison websites, so that motorists are in the driving seat when it comes to choosing a garage to service or repair their cars or carry out an MOT test.

But don’t just take our word for it - simply visit and type in your postcode or town name for a list of garages near you. Be assured that every garage listed performs services to a strict Code of Conduct and will always have your best interests at heart.

Wednesday 23 January 2013

Four days of bad weather result in claims exceeding £3 million

The snow encountered by the motoring public which began toward the end of last week was predicted to have a costly economic effect. 

Millions of workers were unable to reach their workplaces on time (if at all) due to the resultant road congestion. Public transport services were stifled. Those reliant on them for their commute to work plus those who drive were badly affected with many motorists experiencing car breakdowns or road blockages due to cars being stuck in the snow.

It led motoring organisations such as The Highways Agency and the RAC to advise motorists to avoid any non-essential travel but not all motorists were fazed by the poor weather and braved the elements.

Few could have predicted how many accidents and car insurance claims would result from it however. The AA’s car insurance team have released claims figures measured in a four day period from18th-21st January, a staggering 45% of which were as a result of the inclement weather at that time. In total, several hundred claims were received by the organisation with the total value of those claims being in excess of £3 million and affecting an estimated seven thousand vehicles.

Causes blamed for this include poor visibility from cars whose drivers have not removed insufficient amounts of ice and snow before starting journeys.
The AA’s car insurance director, Simon Douglas advised: “Good visibility is important at all times and especially so when the weather is poor. Pedestrians can slip off icy pavements while other vehicles can make unpredictable movements. You need the greatest opportunity to see what’s happening around you. People who drive around in cars that could be mistaken for an igloo are accidents waiting to happen. Not only can they see little of their surroundings but chunks of snow and ice fly off as they drive, posing a serious risk to pedestrians and other drivers.”

This was highlighted by the recent example of the Audi-driving motorist pictured driving down the M4 motorway with only a small section of the windscreen cleared. For the article containing an image of the vehicle, by Alistair Potter of please see here.

Rule 229 of The Highway Code states:

Before you set off
•    You MUST be able to see, so clear all snow and ice from all your windows
•    You MUST ensure that lights are clean and number plates are clearly visible and legible
•    Make sure the mirrors are clear and the windows are demisted thoroughly
•    Remove all snow that might fall off into the path of other road users
•    Check your planned route is clear of delays and that no further snowfalls or severe weather are predicted

Friday 11 January 2013

New tablet for Christmas? Lucky you!

Image of table with Good Garage Scheme app logoThe figures have not yet been published but all stock levels indicate it was quite a Christmas for tablets. If you have been lucky enough to receive one or have treated yourself to a new iPad, iPad mini, Google Nexus or Windows tablet, you will now have access to the wonderful world of apps.

There are now millions of apps to choose from and the list is growing each week. If you haven't done so already, why not download the Good Garage Scheme's Free App. Over 10,000 motorists have already downloaded it, and it was awarded one of the Sunday Times' "Top Apps in the World" in 2011 and 2012.

The app allows you to search for a Good Garage Scheme member near you the next time you need someone to repair or service your car. Simply type your postcode or town name and a list will appear with reviews from previous customers and details about the garage.

Visit for more information

Friday 4 January 2013

Resolutionary Road

New Year is a time when we consider our goals for the next twelve months, whether that is to start using the unused gym membership, quit drinking alcohol in the afternoon or stop not winning the lottery. Perhaps you have resolved to change some of your driving habits.

No matter what, you must always be able to stop your vehicle within the distance you can see to be clear. This is inevitably shortened in the dark. During hours of darkness use your lights to improve your view, using full beam whenever possible without dazzling other road users.

It's your responsibility to ensure that you're fit to drive. The NHS recommends having an eye test every two years. Many people are entitled to free examinations.

Adverse weather conditions are the cause of thousands of road accidents every year. Make sure you check the weather forecast before embarking upon a long journey and heed any weather warnings. If the weather is really bad, consider whether your journey is necessary. If it is, it may be worth taking public transport or walking if it's a short distance.

It's important to ensure your vehicle is well maintained whatever the weather. Check fluid levels, lights, windscreen wipers, tyre pressures and depths weekly. Windows, mirrors, number plates and lights should be kept clean at all times.

Anticipation is key to staying safe on the roads. Never assume that another motorist has seen you, just because you have spotted them. Expect the unexpected – particularly at junctions, traffic lights and roundabouts.

The IAM has a new website,, with traffic updates, weather forecasts and tips on how to drive safely in winter, including various types of weather. Check it out before you travel.