Shoe repairer puts sole into last-minute jobs

Paul Ayers repairs footwear in his Stuart St premises before making home deliveries to customers. Photo: Christine O'Connor
Paul Ayers repairs footwear in his Stuart St premises before making home deliveries to customers. Photo: Christine O'Connor
Amid the harrowing business stories resulting from the Covid-19 outbreak, there are a few heartwarming tales.

Like Paul Ayers, from Ayers Shoe Repairs, who has been beavering away behind closed doors at his Stuart St premises and then making home deliveries of repaired footwear.

Mr Ayers contacted customers on Tuesday, offering them alternative payment methods. That, he described as a “win-win” — he continued to get an income while his customers got their favourite shoes back.

In many cases, customers had dropped off a bag of four or five pairs to be repaired, which meant they would have missed them if they had not been able to get them repaired.

Yesterday, he continued to work behind closed doors getting work finished, before bagging them up and delivering them to doorsteps, all while avoiding personal contact.

There had been a “fantastic” response from customers who were very appreciative of his efforts, he said.

Ayers Shoes Repairs started in the 1940s as E.P. Williams Ltd, later shifting to its current premises when Richard Ayers joined the firm. His son Paul joined as an apprentice in 1975.

Paul Ayers was very grateful that he did not employ any staff and he felt for those employers who did have staff and were facing a very difficult time.

sally.rae@odt.co.nz

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