Vox pop Q&A with Roger Runswick

Liz Nicholls

We chat to Roger Runswick, dad, DIY lover & founder & director of The 50plus, about his best bits of Bucks

Q. Hi Roger. Where do you live & what do you enjoy doing?
“I’m 72 and I still work full-time. I’ve lived in Chesham since the late 1970s (but with spells abroad for work). I have two adult children. My hobbies (and work!) are software coding, DIY (what a surprise!), applying technology in the home and (mostly) pleasure maintaining an old Morgan car and producing garden figures in acrylic.”

Q. Where are your favourite local haunts?
“I love walking in the Chilterns, The Grand Union Canal and the BBOWT [Berkshire, Buckinghamshire & Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust] reserves such as College Lake in Tring. I occasionally cycle, particularly along the Phoenix Trail from Princes Risborough to Thame – great for us oldies as being an old railway it’s reasonably level and Thame is a great coffee/snack halfway stop before returning.”

Q. What do you most love about where you live?
“Who can complain about living in the Chilterns? An AONB with marvellous countryside coupled with easy access to London and transport links!”

“Who can complain about living in the Chilterns?”

Q. What don’t you like so much?
“We’ve all got our gripes at the moment but as someone running a business what I’d really like is a few years without political instability, epidemics, wars so the global ‘we’ can instil confidence and grow the economy (politicians please take note!)”

Q. What are your favourite local pubs or restaurants?
“We often eat in Amersham. I’d mention the Pomeroy, Zaza, Bistro Twelve Twenty and Seasons Café.”

Q. What about shops or local businesses – any in particular you love to mooch round, or any worthy of a mention?
“Being a (possibly typical) male, I shop when I need something and ‘mooching’ is unusual for me. That usually means shopping for birthdays and Christmas when I certainly like the street markets where I can find unique gifts. I also like Amersham Owned and its partner bookshop Chapter Two in Chesham. Both are Hospice of St Francis shops and well worth a visit.”

Q. Where is your favourite local landmark or hidden secret locally?
“I suspect most people know about Wendover Woods, Coombe Hill and the Little Missenden to Amersham river walk but all are to commended.”

Q. What highlights are you looking forward to?
“The first is spring and summer and hopefully less rain this year! A warm summer providing plenty of opportunity for garden works, walks and open-top car drives to some favourite destinations, especially the Chinnor & Princes Risborough railway for a good breakfast and a train ride if it takes your fancy.”

Q. What’s on the horizon for your business?
“The 50plus is a business that provides a very broad range of home maintenance and improvement services. The name originally derived from the age of the service providers (the plumbers, electricians, and handypersons etc) but the company’s domestic customer base demographic and service offering is orientated toward the more mature customer – although the level of customer service finds fans across a broad age range.”

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