Is it just me or are water companies difficult to believe? After two dry winters many parts of the UK had hosepipe bans introduced in early spring however no one told the weather! April downpours drowned out most of the washing days curtailing all aspects of retail. During this time there was talk of further water restriction measures later in the year. Drought orders were mooted, water for non-essential use would not be allowed and finally standpipes could return to our streets.

A few weeks later and drought orders and hosepipe bans are rescinded and all is well again (apart from in the South East). It is not good enough to be treated this way; businesses need consistency and being given conflicting messages over just a couple of months is unreasonable. The Environment Agency say the word ’drought’ needs to be redefined and scalable. What the consumers need is to be updated regularly in the good times and not just the bad. The car wash industry should not be at the mercy of water companies trying to get households to use less water by threatening legitimate businesses that use a miniscule quantity of water. If they really wanted to save water they would ensure all households had meters.

On a more positive note (hopefully!), the country is shaping up for the Olympics, one of the biggest events in its history and car washing can be involved too. Wash operators should seriously consider contacting their maintainer, to get them to clean the bay and service the machine to ensure faultless operation. They should also consider setting up special programmes maybe introduce coloured foam. But, most important of all, promote the wash for the duration of the events. There is so much going on in our shops, why not extend that concept to the car wash? I would suggest a special gold programme that combines everything that the wash can offer and sell it competitively it could be offered half price for 24 hours after a GB Gold medal has been won!

The WashMark scheme continues to be deployed. Existing members must register for the scheme to display the logo and new members will automatically be issued the WashMark upon successful application. Full marks must go to our member in Northampton for his excellent use of the Washmark scheme. A point of difference between him and his many hand wash competitors.