Meet Clare King MCIPHE RP RHP
What interests you about the industry?
I wanted to do something where I could make a difference. Before plumbing I was working in an optician’s shop.
How did you get into it?
My parents built an extension on their house. My dad was an engineer with Cosworth so he knew what he was doing. I was 15 and I already knew how to drain a central heating system. The government said we were short of tradespeople so I found a college and got on a course. I was one woman among 89 men. It was a bit daunting, but I’d done my research.
How did you get into your current role?
I went on my own very early on. A family friend was gas registered and he helped me get my training done. I set up on my own so I could work around my kids. I used to bring them on jobs with me. And then my daughter said ‘I want to come along and work with you’. Now she’s learning the trade, doing her exams and getting on.
What’s the best thing you’ve learned?
Self confidence. Meeting so many different people has been a massive positive in my life. I’ve grown a lot and nothing phases me now.
What’s the benefit of CIPHE membership?
It helps you stand out. It helps raise awareness that you’re out there and committed to doing a good job. It’s a mark of quality.
Tell us something people don’t know about you.
I did gymnastics to competition level and now I do obstacle races. I’ve done a Rat Race Dirty Weekend – 20 miles with 200 obstacles. It took me 6.5 hours but I enjoyed it.
Have you got a standout moment?
I taught my sister plumbing and my daughter and another lady. So there are at least four female plumbers in Northampton – and I trained three of them. My daughter is doing really well, I’m really proud of her.
Would you do it all over again?
Absolutely – and I would have done it sooner. I waited, and if I knew then what I knew now, I wouldn’t have done that.
This article first appeared in the Jan/Feb 2020 issue of P&H Engineering, the magazine for members of the CIPHE. Find out how to join here.