For husband and wife business partners, Peter and Pauline Lynch, you could certainly say there is a charge in their relationship, a spark in the air, a fusing of two like minds!
The Derry electricians married in 2004 and two years later they started their business - Lynch Electricals. It wasn’t the first time they had worked together however; the couple had previously worked side by side as ‘sparks’ in Du Pont for ten years. Though they knew each other socially before starting on the apprentice scheme, it was while at Du Pont their relationship sparkled.
The couple have worked and then lived together since they were aged 17 and 18. They even celebrate their birthdays the day after each other, August 20 and 21.
Coincidentally their employee, Dee Lynch, no relation, also celebrates his birthday on August 19. “You couldn’t make it up” laughs Peter.
The Lynchs formed their own company after being made redundant by Du Pont. “We worked night and day on it,” recalls Pauline. “We had no children then so we worked flat out to make sure it took off.”
Today there is one employee, Dee, and one apprentice electrician on their books as well as a number of vans on the road.
“Well again it is about keeping the company going in these tough times but we are big supporters of the Tech apprentice scheme. We came through the system and so did Dee.”
The couple’s no-nonsense approach ensured their success. “Though I’m happy to do the books and the accounts I am equally handy with power tools, knocking through walls, or getting up and down ladders. Working together has always come naturally to us,” said Pauline adding: “Peter wishes I was out working with him more.” To which her husband replied: “The van is much neater and tidier when she is with me. I never have to look for everything as it is all in the right place.
“Though the truth of the matter is I’m neither the boss at home nor at work!”
The couple now have two young apprentices of their very own, sons Joseph, 3 and Liam 2.
“I am not out as often with Peter as I was.
“I suppose the beauty of being self-employed is that you can take time to spend with the kids. I had almost a full year off when Joseph was born.”
Peter on the other hand hasn’t ever had longer than a one week break. “You just have to keep at it. Look after the business and it’ll look after you.
“The main positive of being a mixed couple in this line of work is that with Pauline there it automatically puts women at ease. Two big burly workmen can be intimidating for some but Pauline’s presence proves reassuring.”
It isn’t always plain sailing however as brave employee Dee notes: “I have been caught in the middle of a few rows, you just keep your head down and it passes though!” he joked.