Darryl and Phillipa Adams are closing up shop after 53 years in business together | Mudgee Guardian

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After 53 ‘enjoyable’ years, Darryl and Phillipa Adams have decided to bring their Home and Office Electronics chapter to a close. After working as a technician for Keith McCully and Loneragans, Darryl Adams and wife, Phillipa purchased Milton’s Radio and Electrical Service business in 1967 off of Wilf Hodges, a business that was established in 1923 by Harry Milton who pioneered 2MG. This meant Darryl and Phillipa were the fourth owners of the service outlet whose business ventured through the countless creations and changes in the electronic industry, including the welcoming of colour television. In the news: “There has been such a change in products over the years. My technical training is basically in electronics and once you understand all the rules that govern how things work, it’s not difficult to keep up to date with all the changes,” Darryl said. “The nature of the business has changed to a fair degree. We had four full-time technicians who did house calls back then, those people didn’t sell products, they purely repaired things. “We have three children all with advanced degrees in various things but I know more about electronics than they do and they have degrees in computer science and that sort of thing. “Specialisation has become more narrow than it used to be even in those days.” Darryl was swept with confidence in the lead up to taking over the business with Phillipa, and to this day, it is a decision neither of the two regret. “His first love in life was repairing things and giving things a go, he did some of that work prior to us purchasing this business,” Phillipa said. “I was eight or nine when I discovered electronics, about 75 years ago now. I used to make all sorts of electronic gadgets when I was in primary school, I can remember making spark transmitters,” Darryl said. “I was very confident that I could manage a business at the beginning. The hardest part, particularly in latter years, has been finding suitable staff. “A business like this is fairly controlling, you don’t get to do much else but we haven’t lived for work and we have never traded seven days a week,” the pair said. “We’ve been fortunate in that we’ve been able to happily live together and happily work together, it’s a rare quality these days, I think. “We’ve had some very good staff over the years too, some had worked for us for over 20 years, very loyal.” The business initially traded under Darryl Adams TV and Radio Service, now Home and Office Electronics, and in 1980, the business became an authorised Tandy Electronics Dealer for the region, before their name change to Dick Smith. While undoubtedly there are many highlight moments to be expected throughout 53 years of operation, one of the most memorable for the Adams’ is when they were awarded the Tandy Dealer of the Year in 1992. “They [Tandy] gave us a holiday in Malaysia for 10 days or something, it was pretty fancy,” Darryl said. “We’ve had significant awards over the years for the business and the way we were running it. “One of the highlights I feel is the customer loyalty. Some people say there is no loyalty anymore, maybe for some people there isn’t, but we aren’t like a grocery story, you don’t have to come in every week,” Phillipa said. “In the early days of the colour televisions we sold many of them because there was no place like Harvey Norman or Big W. Some of our early customers came back 20 years later and said ‘my television is getting sick’ and got it fixed or replaced. Now, they were loyal customers because they came back when they needed.” More local history: Not only was Darryl Mudgee’s go-to man for electronics, he was also the first person in town to have a colour television due to importing his own from the United Kingdom because ‘you couldn’t buy one in Australia’. “I needed to be trained in colour television technology so I attended a course every month in Orange for a while to bring my skills up to date,” Darryl said. “I needed that because I was taught the theory but I needed to practice. The set I imported is on display at the Mudgee museum at the moment. “Early colour television sets needed to be installed in a particular position because the earth’s magnetic field had a significant effect on the purity of colour on the screen, they were so sensitive. “If you wanted to move it to a different place around the house, you would have to call a technician to configure the set to make sure the colours were pure and there was no purple haze.” When Home Office and Electronics ceases trading and the doors close for the last time, there might be a moment of sadness. The Adams’ will remember all the good that has come from perhaps their longest chapter before leaping into retirement. “We’re retiring from running a business full-time, there’s lots of other things we would like to do,” Phillipa said. “It looks like the end of the business as it is but you never know, sometimes a particular business might close and someone sees it as an opportunity. “We want to thank our customers because it’s all very well us being here for 53 years, but we would not have been if not for our customers. “I think we will manage it quite well, I don’t think it will be a problem because I still have the ability to repair things,” Darryl said. “Overall it’s been most enjoyable. I think I’m a little more sorrowful of closing the business than Phillipa is, it’s been a great joy to sort things out and help people.” Home Office and Electronics will likely cease trading at the end of September, 2020, until then they are still trading at their 100A Church Street address. We wish them all the best.

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