SCH founder passes away aged 80

SCH (Supplies) founder and former managing director, Andrew Rodwell, passed away following a short illness on the morning of Saturday 4th May at the age of 80.

Many will know Andrew from the company’s 33 years of extensive attendance at garden machinery shows across the country, where SCH have displayed their product range to potential customers and machinery dealers.

Due to health concerns, in December 2018, Andrew and his family decided to hand over the running of SCH to two of his long-term employees John Free and Ian Holder.

A spokesperson for the company said, “SCH had been Andrew’s passion for over thirty years, and his hard work has put the company’s future on a successful trajectory. We will continue to trade as normal, so that his legacy is maintained.”

SCH (Supplies) were the first company ever to advertise in Service Dealer magazine back in 1988. The magazine’s founder Chris Biddle said, “I am saddened to hear of the death of Andrew Rodwell. He was an innovative inventor, a SALTEX stalwart, genial host and one of the turfcare industry's real characters. Rest in peace, Andrew.”

In 1986, Andrew recognised that the ordinary lawn mower tractor was capable of a lot more than merely mowing grass. With the help and encouragement of Malcolm Vandenburgh at Wests Engineering Ltd, the pair set about designing and manufacturing a range of grass care machinery. Before long, SCH (Supplies) Ltd was created and began selling products to a handful of local dealers.

Through sheer hard work and determination, the business flourished and expanded, and now has a catalogue of over 200 products, and a vast network containing hundreds of machinery dealers across the country. Andrew spent countless hours thinking of every possible need for the keen gardener, groundsman and game keeper, with the popular product range constantly evolving.

From the early days of SCH, Andrew was an advocate of training local aspiring engineers. He nurtured and mentored his young apprentices, some of whom have remained with SCH for over twenty years. The business now employs 25 people who design, manufacture and deliver the machinery.

Andrew has been described as a larger than life character, he was gregarious, often hilarious and a great British eccentric. He had a passion for anything mechanical from vintage tractors to classic cars. He will be sorely missed by SCH and all who knew him.

Service Dealer sends our condolences to Andrew’s family, colleagues and many friends throughout the industry.

A memorial service took place yesterday, (23rd May) at Holbrook.

Leave a comment

You are commenting as guest.