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Inspirational Alvin celebrates 60 years in business

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Age is just a number for long-serving estate agent Alvin Gardiner, who has clocked up 60 years in the industry.

At an exceedingly sprightly 77, Alvin, who owns Frowens Independent Estate Agents in Stroud has no plans to retire yet.

“I just come to work every day and all of a sudden it’s 60 years,” said Alvin, who joined the company straight from school at the age of 17.

When Alvin started his estate agency career as a fresh-faced teenager, the business was based at Imperial House, opposite the Stroud Hotel and he recalled his formative years under his boss Mr Vivian Frowen: “I always remember Mr Frowen asking me if I was going to leave after six months and join the police, but I didn’t and decided to stay.”

In the 1990s, Alvin bought Frowens from Mr Frowen, and a few years later, his wife Angela joined the company as a partner, the office subsequently moved to 45 Russell Street before taking up residence on London Road, where they operate from to this day.

alvin 2024 1 | Inspirational Alvin celebrates 60 years in business
Alvin with a custom-made cake and balloons.

Over the decades, Alvin has certainly seen huge changes in the property market: “The first house I remember selling was in Nailsworth and it went for just under £1,000. I was actually called back to that house the year before last, when the owner died, and he had lived in the same house all that time.”

And what’s the secret to his longevity? “I suppose I’m a ‘people person’,” he revealed. “I like people and I enjoy the job I do and I enjoy helping people to actually achieve what they want to do with the move. I’m fit and healthy. I just want to continue because I enjoy the job so much.”

Property Centre partner Simon Trippett heaped praise on Alvin’s longevity: “Good estate agents come and go – but the really good ones stick around, build relationships and brilliant reputations and are respected by their competitors and are trusted by their customers time and time again. 

“When we opened our Stroud Office almost 20 years ago, Alvin was already the epitome of this, and fast-forward two more decades and his reputation and standing in Stroud estate agents’ folklore is incredible. 

“Always smiling and happy to see you, a quick wave on his way to and from his appointments or his lunch break, and a hugely admired and respected estate agent and by the looks of things, there’s no stopping him yet.”

DSC2504 | Inspirational Alvin celebrates 60 years in business
Alison Baker, Lettings Manager, and Alvin Gardiner. Alison said: “I am so proud to be part of such a great long standing business and Alvin is such a wonderful boss and lovely man.” Picture: Matt Bigwood.

Jake Mortlock, Director at Peter Joy said: “A huge congratulations from us all at Peter Joy to Alvin on an incredible 60 years in the business. I’ve been working as an estate agent for 28 years, but Alvin already had 32 years experience when I was a wet-behind-the-ears trainee!

“It’s amazing to think of the changes in the housing market, house prices, and the Stroud area in general that Alvin would have witnessed during that time. Hats off to him, and here’s to many more happy years at the helm at Frowens.”

alvin cake | Inspirational Alvin celebrates 60 years in business

Sawyers’ branch manager, Clive Brown, said: “In celebrating Alvin Gardiner’s impressive six-decade career as an estate agent, all of us here at Sawyers Estate Agent and Fine & Country extend our heartfelt congratulations.

“Currently at the helm of his own independent estate agency, Frowens Estate Agents, Alvin is widely esteemed. His wealth of property knowledge is highly respected, and his familiar face is a reassuring presence to many within the community. Here’s to 60 years of outstanding dedication to the estate agency industry.”

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