By Janet Tansley
WE’RE used to seeing handyman Craig Phillips with a drill in his hand and a spanner sticking out of his overalls, but now the man in the hard hat is encouraging the rest of us to do the same.
Craig, 46, from Seaforth, is preparing to start an online service showing us all how to do basic repair and refurbishment jobs in our own homes.
“We want to teach them how to do for themselves all those jobs that they’re too embarrassed to ring a tradesman for or jobs that the tradesmen can’t be bothered coming out for,” said the original Big Brother winner turned TV presenter and developer.
“That’s not to do down the tradesmen, I’m one myself and I support them, but there is no reason why people shouldn’t do some of the small jobs like replacing the silicon around the bath or replace a dripping tap themselves.”
Craig is in the process of creating and collating content and videos for mr&mrsDIY.com with fiancée Laura Sherriff – the other half of his do-it-yourself double act – for which they will also set up a regular blog with news items and answers to any questions people might have.
The couple met just under a year ago and as well as teaming up in real life are partners for the project too.
“Laura and I met in the studios of Ideal World, she was a model and sports presenter. She has always been handy but, in the last 12 months we have been together, Laura has been helping me out and learning even more.”
Craig is hoping to launch the website this summer and says it will include DIY classes, getting together around 15-20 people per class, and targeting specific groups too like women and couples.
He is hoping to do much of the filming in the new studios he is building in his home near Rainhill, for which he has just got the planning go ahead.
You’d think that would be enough to keep Craig out of mischief but he also has the 25 properties he rents out to keep on top of his TV work.
He is currently appearing in live TV demonstrations for shopping channels and he is due to start filming episodes of 60-Minute Makeover again soon.
“I still work 100 hours a week but it’s like I tell the young men and women coming in to this business, or to any career, if you are prepared to work hard you will get more out of it. Your get out what you put in.
“I’m not embarrassed about what I have achieved because I have worked hard for it.”