Sandal BMW

TMO Talks To Phil Townend, Parts Advisor at Sandal BMW Wakefield 



Sandal BMW is a privately owned BMW and MINI retailer and service centre with showrooms in Huddersfield and Wakefield. Established in 1976, they are proud of our Yorkshire heritage and values. BMW trained technicians only use BMW approved parts so that customers can be rest assured that their BMW or MINI is always in expert hands. We caught up with Phil Townend, Parts Advisor at Sandal BMW’s Wakefield dealership on Dewsbury Road to find out more about the business and his work.


TMO: How long have you worked in the automotive sector?


PT: I have worked in the sector for 51 years – over half a century! I started out as an apprentice technician at the age of 15, before completing what was then City & Guilds training to qualify as a mechanic. After that, I went on to achieve BMW technician accreditation. Following my semi-retirement, I have since moved into the parts department where I currently work today.

Phil Townend (first on left on first row)

TMO: Why did you choose to work in the motor industry?


PT: : I wanted to be a joiner, but my careers officer thought better!


TMO: What do you enjoy most about your job and your work in the automotive sector?


PT: I enjoy the mechanics of a car, and the daily challenge of figuring out and fixing problems.


TMO: What is your main career highlight to date?


PT: It has to be passing my BMW technician exams, because at that time, I was one of the only people in the country to have achieved that.


TMO: What do you think is the biggest challenge facing your business?


PT: I think it has to be the uncertain climate that we are currently living in, and not being sure of how the future is going to pan out.


TMO: What approaches do you use, or what events do you run to make customers feel even more at ease when they visit your premises?


PT: We have a friendly, approachable and down-to-earth manner with our customers and are welcoming to all those who visit our business, whether for sales, parts or servicing.


TMO: How does your business benefit from being accredited to The Motor Ombudsman’s Motor Industry Code of Practice for Service and Repair and Vehicle Sales? 


PT: Being a privately owned company, we benefit from being able to provide a more personal service to customers, and therefore, our own values mirror The Motor Ombudsman’s Codes of Practice.



Interview conducted in September 2019.