Fifth generation joins family garage

Tudor Garage: Brian Coles, Vaughn Coles, Joseph Coles, Martin Petty and Jane Coles

Tudor Garage: Brian Coles, Vaughn Coles, Joseph Coles, Martin Petty and Jane Coles - Credit: Archant

A FAMILY-RUN business in Portishead has welcomed its fifth generation into the firm.

Joe is the latest apprentice at the garage

Joe is the latest apprentice at the garage - Credit: Archant

Joseph Coles, whose family has been running a business in the town’s High Street for the past 118 years, has joined Tudor Garage as a 16-year-old apprentice.

Tudor Garage

Tudor Garage - Credit: supplied

Thomas Coles founded a haulage business in 1895 at 62 High Street, which until recently was Catherine’s Patisserie. He ran a daily carrier service to Bristol with his horse and cart.

Tudor Garage in 1959

Tudor Garage in 1959 - Credit: supplied

Thomas was one of the first people in Portishead to own a car and lorry and he saw potential in the repair of motor vehicles. Deciding to expand his business to include this facility, he instructed the building of Central Garage, where Gordano Ford now stands.

After World War Two Thomas’ son George took over and expanded the haulage side of the business. George had Tudor Garage built at its current location of 51 High Street in 1955 and later sold the haulage business ending 60 years of trading at 62 High Street.


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George, with his son Brian and brother-in-law Robert Wheeler, continued to run Tudor Garage and when George retired in the early 1960s Brian and Robert took on the running of the business. Tudor Garage was the first garage to carry out MOTs in Portishead. Brian’s nephew Martin Petty joined Tudor in 1972 and in 1980 Brian’s son Vaughn started his apprenticeship.

Today the business is run by Martin, Vaughn and Vaughn’s wife Jane.

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Martin’s son Jordan also works for the company and so does his cousin Pete Atherton.

Turning up for his first day as an apprentice Joseph said: “I am delighted to be the fifth generation starting at the garage and am looking forward to working with my dad as he did with his dad before me.”

Joseph’s younger brother Luke is also showing an interest in the family firm and hopes to join in a few years time.

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