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Plumber reflects on 48 year career with Belfast firm

A Belfast plumber has downed tools for the final time as he looks forward to his retirement after a lengthy career.

Trevor McMillan joined Beggs and Partners at the age of 17 in 1974 when he worked as a lorry helper before learning his trade.

Throughout his time at the company, Trevor has seen it rapidly expand and the materials used change drastically.

Reflecting on his time with the company, Trevor told Belfast Live: “I started as a lorry helper then I moved inside on to the counter. From there I went on to do maintenance.

“When I first joined the company we had one store on Great Patrick Street then we opened a branch in Ballymena. From there, the company gathered pace and within recent years we have started opening branches in Britain.

“When I started all the baths were cast iron, now most of them are plastic,” he added.

In recent years, Trevor joined some of his colleagues to help on an episode of the BBC’s DIY SOS(Image: Beggs and Partners )

Using the skills that he gained through his job, Trevor has put these to good use travelling the world and undertaking charity work.

“I joined an organisation called LIFT which stands for Labour in Faith and Trust. It is a Christian organisation and for instance, if you have an orphanage and you need a roof, we will go out and put the roof on,” he told us.

“The teams that go out pay their own way for the two weeks that they are out.

“The last project that I was on was in Tanzania where I was working on a school which had 94 blind or visually impaired children.

“One of the first projects that I was involved in was in Kosovo just after the war and some of the things I saw there was absolutely horrendous.

“I have seen the best of people and the worst of people.”

Trevor’s charity work was not just international. In recent years, he joined some of his colleagues at Beggs and Partners to help out when the BBC’s DIY SOS came to Northern Ireland to assist a family in need.

Now that Trevor has retired, he said he plans to take each day as it comes and looks forward to helping out more with his church.

“There has been a lot of good times in my work and I am going to miss the craic with everyone but God has been a big part of my life and always will be,” he added.


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