Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Porsche Memories BOOK

I'm publishing my book Porsche Memories very soon on Amazon

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Montage of photographs as sketches


I hope extracts from my book Porsche Memories has given you an insight into my life with Porsche over the years, since I was fifteen years old.
Unfortunately as I left the Porsche Importer business in Bahrain and the subsequently the business entity was wound up, all the company records got lost or destroyed. I have tried to ask friends to see if these were kept but alas we drew a blank contacting Bebehani Bros who took over Porsche stock and records. All the valuable customer and Porsche AG records and photographs were lost and this material would have added substantially to this book.
I am still seeking out material from other sources so perhaps a new edition of this book will follow one day soon as modern technologies such as social networks allow people to get back in touch after many years, so I remain hopeful of additional material turning up.
As is apparent, I am not a professional writer, but I have tried to tell my story as I remember it in plain English.
I would like to dedicate this book to my late brother Ginger, who started the whole Porsche relationship off for me, which in turn led to my sometimes-unbelievable experiences and journeys and to my dear old friends, John Aldington and Bill Bates who were always there for me.
I recall a friend and colleague Paul Muir joking with me many years after my time with Porsche in Bahrain, after I was back in Scotland. He said to me one day, “Alan you must have a really vivid imagination?” When I took some old photographs in to show him the following day, he remarked, “You really have done all those things you talked about, haven’t you!”
To establish and run your own businesses is very hard work; you need a certain amount of luck, dedication, integrity, determination, and a will to succeed. You also need to enjoy what you are doing and have fun along the way. I was young, extremely enthusiastic and to some extent a bit naïve, but my love of Porsche took care of most of my personal failings.
We created a very successful Porsche business out of nothing, which is truly not that easy, as those of you have been down this road yourselves, will appreciate. When I say, “We started with nothing”, I mean we had absolutely nothing; Alone in a foreign country with a few friends, nowhere to live, no money in our pockets, no parents to help us out, no house to mortgage to a bank, no capital whatsoever, just a love for Porsche, an idea, our wits and a dream that entailed a lot of hard work!
I look back on my time with Porsche over the years with great fondness. I managed to have a great amount of fun, meet so many different people from all walks of life and be truly happy in my work.  To those of you who joined in and helped along the way – thank you very much indeed!
If I could do it all over again I would not change much, except perhaps, to have benefited from some formal business management and financial training. Also I would have taken a slightly tougher stance with some of the people who we worked with, especially Ed Peter at Porsche AG.
My passion for Porsche is as true today as it has ever been, and if the opportunity presented itself in the future, I would certainly seize the chance to work with Porsche again without a second thought!
Porsche is in my blood and will always be so to my dying day. Porsche is not just a motorcar it is more a way of life and becomes part of you.
I would also like to thank you the reader for investing your time in reading my very small part in the Porsche story. Porsche is a business culture in its own right, a company who design and manufacture a superb range of products.
Excellence was expected and delivered and for me and Porsche is as they say,
“Driving in its Purest Form!”

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Paul Nolan and Martin Giddins shipping their first car

Martin Giddins

My late youngest brother Martin died three days after our father died, which was a big blow to our family, having a double funeral.
Martin had started up a Freight Forwarding business with my old school friend Paul Nolan and they were based near Feltham, by Heathrow airport, London.
I had returned from Bahrain on a visit and Martin tapped me up to pay for his Yamaha service and I went down with him to collect his motorcycle. He was a good rider and had complete control over his bike, so he had the Giddins “genes” in him for riding motorcycles.
My late Uncle Charles was in the RAF motor cycle team after the war and his son, John did a lot of scrambling which I used to go and watch.
Later that evening, Martin was driving home to his new wife of a few months passing along the dual carriageway near Chequers, the official country residence of the British Prime Minister, when a man wandered in front of a lady driving a BMW 320. The lady managed to miss the man but Martin was briefly blinded whilst he was overtaking her car at about 55 mph and he had no chance to avoid the man and hit him head on.
It turned out the man was drugged up out of his mind just wandering on the unlit road. Martin hit the kerb and although he had a riding suit of leathers and crash helmet on, he died 20 minutes later in hospital from massive head injuries.