The first locksmith to register for LOCKEX 2016 – who wins a free subscription to The Locksmith journal – is Gavin McNae, who runs LockRite in sunny Torbay in glorious South Devon. Our congratulations go to Gavin, who has successfully run the franchised business for four years, following his career in the Royal Navy.
Gavin joined the RN at 16 straight from school, starting in communications and subsequently becoming a weapons engineer, moving up through small arms, more serious artillery and then into missiles including Exocet and Trident.
So after that level of excitement, what led him to locksmithing?
“One of my first jobs in the Royal Navy was to sort out a problem with a massive brass ammunition locker,” he told me. “They told me to fix it, so I took it to pieces, found out what the snag was, had the parts made up – and it worked!”
But he admits that what he really wanted initially after leaving the Senior Service was to join the Police. Then a chance conversation with a man from Keytec led him to consider to the possibility of locksmithing – after which LockRite gave him the opportunity to run their South Devon franchise. The rest, as they say, is history.
“It worked out very well,” he said. “I loved my time in the RN and I love my work now. It may seem corny but my job satisfaction comes from helping people, making them feel more secure in their own homes. We get lots of work here from PVCu to lock snapping, which is now becoming an issue here.”
Gavin is well aware of the lock snapping problems in West Yorkshire because he lived in Huddersfield for some years after his family moved there from Scotland.
He missed LockExpo in Nottingham but will be at the MLA Expo this year and is now really looking forward to LOCKEX in 2016.
We are certainly happy to welcome Gavin “on board” and have “press-ganged” him into another feature in our next issue, when we will find out more about his business and his life.