In 2018 McAlpine Plumbing linked up with two-time champion of the world Gary Anderson as ‘The Flying Scotsman’ joined forces with the Scottish family business of the year.
Since then, Gary has been working alongside the company with regular visits to the factories to visit some of the 750 employees over the eight different sites.
Talking of how the partnership came about, Ross McAlpine said: “We were looking for ways to engage with plumbers and installers and we wanted a talking point and felt that darts was a perfect fit for what we wanted to do.
“In Scotland we’re starved a bit of sporting success so the fact we could have a former World Champion was really important to us.”
Gary has seen a return to form during the lockdown period, making the final night of action in the PDC Home Tour. Such exploits during such a tough time stand him in good stead for when ranking event return with the PDC Summer Series this July.
Speaking about the former World Matchplay champions trips back to his homeland, McAlpine said: “We have a team of around 750 people working for us and we wanted to be able to communicate with each other affectively, so we decided to launch our own in-house publication called ‘The Connector’, Gary was heavily involved in the launch.”
“He has also been kind enough to lend his time so our sales team and directors have had the chance to play darts with a two-time World Champion.
“Gary is such a lovely, down to earth guy so he fits right in with the guys when he does come and visit. Gary can chat to anyone and that’s what makes him such a great ambassador for McAlpine, we had the chance to show him around the factory and he showed a real interest in what we were doing. So to have a personality on board like Gary is huge for us.”
Along with the chance to meet a former two-time World Champion, McAlpine merchants and customers have been able to attend some of the PDC’s star-studded major events, including the Premier League, World Matchplay and the World Darts Championship.
McAlpine told me: “Last year in December we did a #180Giveaway and we gave £180 away to installers and the top prize was to win a visit from Gary, which hasn’t been able to go ahead at this current time, but we look forward to that in the future!”
The aforementioned top prize was won by a Norwich plumber, who is eagerly anticipating his meet with ‘The Flying Scotsman’ in the near future. For now, Anderson returns to the practice board as he looks to capture the Phil Taylor trophy for the second time in his career.
McAlpine started manufacturing plumbing products in 1902 and in 1957 was the first UK company to manufacture Plastic Traps. McAlpine, still a privately-owned family company, continues to manufacture in the UK an exceptionally wide range of plumbing products of the highest quality including ranges of: traps, overflow pipe fittings and WC Connectors. For more information visit mcalpineplumbing.com
WORDS BY JOSH GREEN
Photos courtesy of McAlpine Plumbing