Me & My Job - Martin Ford, owner, Martin Ford Design

Martin Ford, owner, Martin Ford Design - image:  Martin Ford Design
Martin Ford, owner, Martin Ford Design - image: Martin Ford Design

- How did you get started?

Working for my uncle in his polytunnel as "chief plant pot sorter and filler" during the school holidays. I can still remember being blissfully happy and not quite understanding why.

- What has been your hardest job?

Apart from bringing up four children? Physically, it was excavating 40 tonnes of topsoil with a spade and a wheelbarrow because there was no access for a mini-digger. You can never turn down work when you are starting out.

- Have you continued learning?

I learn something new about the industry every day, whether that is factual or in a business sense. There is always something new to learn and pass on.

- What advice would you give others starting out?

If you are passionate about this industry, you have to persevere to get what you want out of it. Keep asking - the more people who say no, the closer you are to someone saying yes.

- What does your typical day involve?

Developing business and marketing, researching the market for new products and styles, meeting clients and I find time for some designing.

- What is the best part of your job?

I love the look on people's faces when I unveil a design and show them what can be achieved in their outdoor space. Listening to a client's requirements and interpreting them into a smooth design is so rewarding.

- And the worst?

Tax returns.

- What projects have you got on?

I am designing and consulting for commercial and domestic clients all over the country as well as working on a proposed show garden for a charity.

- How do you wind down after a hard day?

When my kids allow it, I play football, run marathons and relax with my wife in our outdoor space.

- What does the future hold?

I am determined to design an award-winning show garden and to develop the business to show people how design can enhance their outdoor spaces.

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