Everyone knows that any company is only as good as its staff and David strongly believes this is the key to the company’s success.
Most of the twelve staff have been with DG Taylor for over ten years, with four members coming from manufacturers.
David’s keen sporting background means that he has always looked upon the company as a football team, with David the captain and midfield general doing all the shouting!
Stuart is the striker, scoring the goals by selling the goods and taking all the plaudits.
Doug and Derek run the service department and they are the defenders – the unsung heroes – along with Ben, Mick and David's son Daniel, who do a great job in the Service Department making sure the hire fleet is on the road.
Then there is Anthony, Nathan and Gavin who prepare the sales vehicles for customers and deliver and collect them when needed.
One person missing is the goalkeeper – without a goalie the team would fall to pieces, and so here there is Yvonne, David's wife, the company secretary/director along with Gillian who keeps everyone on their toes.
This is why David believes that DG Taylor is truly a Premiership team!
David Taylor’s love affair with commercial vehicles started over 50 years ago. At the age of 12 his father, who worked as a driver/fitter for vehicle distributors Oswald Tillotson Ltd of Burnley (then AEC vehicle distributors), started taking him in trucks alongside him and by the time David was 15 the love affair was in full swing.
When he left Burnley Grammar School he delighted in telling everyone that he was going to work in the truck industry.
This he certainly did achieve, but not as a vehicle fitter or anything like that; the job title he was offered was along the lines of trainee management salesman and, after three years working for the Burnley company, a coincidence happened, which seems to be the story of David’s Life.
The company chairman from the Hull depot, which was the largest distributor of vehicles in the country selling all British Leyland products, was on a visit to the Burnley depot and decided he wanted one of the trainees to take him back to Hull that evening.
David’s life was about to change.
David was offered a job in Hull selling all the company’s products, a fair challenge at 20 years old, and more so being a Lancashire lad selling in Yorkshire.
By the age of 23 David had established himself on the sales team and was selling as many vehicles as some of the senior salesmen, but then on a fateful night in September 1969 tragedy struck.
David's Road to Recovery
Lying in a hospital bed many weeks later David was told by the specialists his career was over, he wouldn’t walk again and that he ought to be making plans to be looked after for the rest of his life.
Fortunately, David’s employer had total faith in him and left his job open to see if he could manage it. In order to achieve this, he moved to a ground floor flat, relocated to a ground floor office and bought a car fitted with automatic transmission and hand controls.
The big day early in January 1970 was fast approaching, but first David first had to pass his driving test again, which, thankfully he did, so beginning the next chapter in his life and career.
On his return to work, David parked the car on the back street so no-one would see him, and wondered how he would get the wheelchair from the back seat to the street, then manoeuvre the car so he could get out the driver’s seat and straight into the wheelchair.
He still vividly remembers going into his new office with great trepidation, but on the desk was a letter addressed to him and, when he opened it, inside was an order for six new Leyland chassis/cabs.
From then on there was no stopping him and David remembers how it must have been quite novel a young man in a wheelchair going into companies selling HGV trucks!
Three years later and at 26 years young David was appointed General Sales Manager, looking after a sales team of six, who managed to sell the most Leyland trucks year-on-year than any other distributor in the country.
With ambition still burning inside, David wanted to have his own company and retail vehicles himself. So, in 1975 David handed in his notice and set up in business with a good friend, who shared three very successful years working together.
David couldn’t believe they didn’t want to know!
Coincidence again though meant that David met a solicitor who knew a friendly bank manager who believed in David and was prepared to give him a small overdraft.
In the first month of business David went to see as many people as possible to drum up interest. One was prepared to rent him a yard – now the 5-acre premises owned by the company – while another sold David a spare car on easy terms. DG Taylor Commercial Vehicles Ltd was born.
There were many ups and down in the first ten years, both business-wise and in life itself. One real highlight was being selected for the Great Britain Paralympics sledgeracing team at the 1984 Innsbruck games, and also playing ice hockey for Great Britain.
This was a great time but the training took up too much time, so David had to retire from the sport and took up badminton and swimming as pastimes to try to keep as fit as possible while running his now small but thriving company retailing used vehicles and new and used tipping trailers.
It was at this time that David began to think about he would manage if he had to take time away from the business due to his paraplegia, so he bought some S/H tractor units, tidied them up and found customers to hire them.
This was the birth of the contract hire division, which is now about 200-strong, with most new DAFs purchased from David’s previous employer.
The company has reported steady growth year-on-year and now has an annual turnover of around £12 million. David is full of praise for all of his 12 loyal staff and says: “Without them, none of this would have been possible.”