Bespoke coaches roll out in Ashburton
They roll in just a chassis on wheels full of hope and promise and leave shining and gleaming – buses, coaches and speciality vehicles destined for life in tourism or the school bus route.
In the Mid Canterbury township of Ashburton, the team at BT Coachbuilders work their magic to deliver beautifully finished bespoke coaches custom built to the client’s specifications.
Business is bustling for BT Coachbuilders with another bumper year that will see the completion of four new buses and coaches and another two to three vehicles underway.
BT stands for Brendon Thomson – the passionate coachbuilder with over 30 years industry experience who saw a gap in the market for someone who would truly listen to the customer’s specific requirements and deliver on the promise. “That’s what the market was lacking,” he says. And that was the gap he filled.
Well that was four years ago and in those four short years business growth has been exponential as repeat business and word of mouth referrals generate a reputation for craftsmanship and quality service that comes out of the little converted Mid Canterbury hay barn. Recently a tent shed was added next to the main workshop to enable a five star coach to be built for Mussons Coachlines.
The first five star coach to be built by BT Coach-builders, the coach is now nearing completion and due to head to the painters mid November.Brendan leads a team of skilled staff who engineer, weld, fabricate and finish to the high level expected from the yard.
Valued team member Jo Smith oversees operations and is responsible for anything from boiling the jug through to job scheduling, customer liaison, accounts and all things needed to keep the business running smoothly.
When not busy in the office, Jo can be found helping on the workshop floor.A loyal team of local subcontractors provides glazing, painting, upholstery and engineering services as required.“This year has been a big one for us.
We’ve done two ski buses, and we have a coach build underway,” says Jo. “We will be starting another two small school buses for Carew Peel Forest School soon.”
BT Coachbuilders’ success comes down to exactly what Brendan set out to achieve—a strong focus on identifying the customer’s requirements, listening to the wish list of specifications, and delivering exactly on what was promised.
“Our craftsmanship ensures a quality product in everything we do,” says Jo. “It’s about making a point of difference.
Customer communication has been a key to our success, we have an open door policy with our clients. “They can pop in and see us any time they like to check on progress.”At the end of November four coaches and buses built by BT Coachbuilders will feature in Ashburton’s Santa Parade.
Jo reckons that will be the perfect time to invite some of those who have been part of the journey over the last four years to a BBQ and say, thank you – job well done.
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