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What not to do

OK, this is going to sound strange, but please don't 'phone me! Seriously. I'd love to hear from you, I'd love to come and discuss your decorating project and give you a free no obligation estimate for the work. But please don't 'phone me.

The reason is quite simple. I receive upto a dozen 'phone calls a day. The vast majority of them are from sales people trying to sell me insurance, advertising space, listings in various directories and so on. Now, call me old-fashioned if you want to, but to my way of thinking, if you're paying me to work in your house, you expect me to be working, not spending the whole day on the 'phone trying to get rid of persistent and irritating sales people. As a result, I tend not to answer my mobile 'phone if I don't recognise the number of the caller.

Additonally, imagine the scene. I'm up a ladder with a paint brush in my hand, or better still a large sheet of wallpaper. The 'phone rings, I come down the ladder, carefully put down whatever I'm working with, and get the 'phone out of my pocket. By this time it's stopped ringing anyway and gone to voicemail. So I go back up my ladder, carry on with whatever I was doing before, and forget all about the voicemail message within about two minutes.

As a result of all of that, I tend not to answer the 'phone unless I recognise the number, and I'm not great at returning voicemail messages, because I'm usually too engrossed in what I'm doing. It's nothing personal - 'phone calls while I'm working just aren't that practical.

What to do instead

As I said, I'd really love to hear from you, just not via a call on my mobile 'phone. The best way to contact me is therefore by text message (SMS); I can read and reply to text messages when I get a spare minute, and it stays in my inbox so I can't forget about it (unlike a voicemail message). Please text me on 07872 628182.

Alternatively, please fill in the contact form on the right, and your details will be sent to my email in-box. Or you can email me direct using "info", followed by the "at" sign, followed by "". Spelling it out "long-hand" like that also seems to cut down the amount of spam email I get.

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