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Gordon McIntyre

Co-Founders Zoe and Gordon met in Oxford when they were 18 whilst Gordon was studying for his Business Diploma.  With a shared love of the countryside, and many friends in common the beginnings of a lifelong (to date, over 3 decades and counting) friendship were set.  Time spent over a few years, living the student dream of afternoons of tennis, pubs, clubs and long wet walks on Port Meadow to blow off the cobwebs and recover from the aforementioned, cementing the alliance.

 

Gordon, like many a serial entrepreneur, has charged through myriad jobs and schemes including doing an army access course, a runner in the film industry and a year working at various Scooterworld outlets in South and West London.  With a love of all things fast, furious and motor-equipped the little 125 Vespas were fairly uninspiring but fun for whizzing around town.   Then turning his attention and creative talents, for four years, to setting up the contemporary Scottish knitwear label ‘Gordon of the North’.

 

After many ‘London years’, (some of which he remembers!) Gordon headed back North of the border to his beloved home (and source of the Gordon of the North brand), Scotland.  It was during a residency as an on-site security guard that he had the time to really reflect.  In fact, hours and hours each night in a site caravan to read, listen to audiobooks and dream up the ‘next big thing’.  It was from this experience and the encyclopaedic knowledge it gave him of the security business that he developed his most successful business venture to date.  PID (Perimeter Intrusion Detection) Systems.  A virtual security guard that never sleeps and is directly linked to a monitored control centre and local police officers.  Gordon and business partner George built the business from a few tiny first shoots of small property developers in and around Glasgow to a mighty oak numbering nationwide mega-organisations such as British Gas and Network Rail.  Eventually  exiting and selling the business in early 2020.

 

It was following the sale of PID Systems that Zoe approached Gordon to ask if he’d like to join forces (again).  A windy dog walk later and Gordon declared it a no brainer that he would like to try and achieve a greater level of sustainability and affordability within the Hearing and Ear Care Industry.  The birth of Hearing Aids Direct. Hopefully the rest is history!?

As mentioned above, Zoe and Gordon having met as teenagers, not only kept in touch over the intervening years but remained very close friends.  Gordon even agreeing to act as a godfather to Zoe’s first daughter Coco.  Little did Zoe and Gordon realise what a fantastic pairing this would be.  Coco being as completely head over heels crazy about everything and anything with a motor as Godfather Gordon.  It’s lovely to see them standing looking at cars, animatedly skipping off for drag racing afternoons or disappearing for a spin in whatever Gordon’s motorised passion project may be at the time.

 

It was probably Zoe and Gordon’s shared love of the countryside, nature, the oceans and Scotland which meant that they remained close but also collaborated on various other projects over the years.  The first of which was called ‘Adopt a Highway (AAH)’.  The idea was to try and persuade local authorities to let AAH sell sponsorship to companies in order to help pay towards litter picking teams to, well obviously, to pick up litter from road edges and verges.  They didn’t ultimately manage to get a pilot scheme, but came very close.  It was in the mid 1990’s and so really quite ahead of the game.  A time when it was beginning to be apparent that fast food and it’s packaging was going to be a problem but the scale of which wasn’t yet imagined.  The problems of single use carrier bags and plastic bottles only just being begun to be discussed.  It was the idea to encourage the producers to take some responsibility for the product they were selling.  A vague nod towards the schemes featured in America but not to the scale where some companies in America ended up sponsoring the view rather than erecting advertising hoardings.  There was so much roadside media a presence was more noticeable by its absence.  One of the small things that Zoe learnt (and has never forgotten) is that there’s mean time it takes for someone to eat a burger and fries and throw the wrapper out of their car window.  Meaning that you can draw a ring around most successful(!) fast food outlets at a set distance and know that, that is where a lot of the rubbish will be found.  Hopefully now, nearly twenty years later people are more careful and conscious and no longer feel it is OK to throw their rubbish out of a car window!?

 

Following the nearly success of AAH, Gordon and Zoe turned their focus and energies towards the creation of the non-profit making organisation RCC-Crew (Remote Coastline Cleansing Crew).  The aim being to tackle the increasing issue of plastic and associated waste materials polluting our coastal environment.  As, unfortunately, seaborn litter doesn’t discriminate where it will eventually wash up it is as likely to be found in very remote places as in more populated areas.  Whilst incredibly harmful in both environments, it’s ecological impact is probably greater the more isolated the location.  A seahorse is a seahorse no matter where it is found.  It is, however, the abundance of rare wildlife found in the inaccessible, unpopulated areas which make the plastic pollution such a terrible threat.

 

There are multiple other organisations running environmental campaigns.  Many contributing to the mandated, regulated, obligatory council run beach cleaning programmes. Lots and lots of volunteers offer their services freely and regularly to supplement these more formal arrangements.  However, they all have one very necessary thing in common – access.  All of the areas that are looked after by established enterprises have available access via coastal pathways, tracks and even public roads.  Although fantastic that these operations exist they leave a big gap unplugged.  The remote inaccessible beaches.  To this end, RCC-Crew designed and commissioned bespoke craft that could land on the beaches with no landward side access. Enabling them to place crew and volunteers on the otherwise inaccessible beaches.  The specialist craft can drop and collect the manpower as well as collecting, sorting and transporting the plastics back to dry land and handing it into the care of the relevant local authority for appropriate recycling.

Gordon feels as passionately as Zoe about improving sustainability, affordability and therefor accessibility within the Hearing and Ear Care Industry.
By phone:  0330 230 3333

By mail:  info@hearingaids-direct.co.uk