Greg's £400 Uniform Tax Refund Story


Sherlock Holmes had Dr Watson to help him solve tricky crimes, Starsky and Hutch screeched round the streets of New York together while Inspector Morse knew he could rely on Lewis’s expertise to crack difficult cases.

But it’s not only fictional detectives who are known for hanging around in pairs. As a ‘Ganger’ in the water industry, you are also required to work in a two-man team.

Greg O’Connor, a ganger from Redhill, has worked with his mate Dennis for more than two years and together they travel throughout Surrey and Hampshire repairing burst pipes.

“We work well together,” Greg says. “I’ve known him for a long time and we’re both equally qualified. Sometimes you can find yourself working with someone who’s a bit lazy and spends a lot of time on their phone,” he admits, “but that’s usually youngsters. The best way to handle it is to be straight and tell them you don’t like it.”

Greg and Dennis work long hours, starting at 6am and never knowing where they will be sent till they turn up in the morning. Most of their work is on roads and pavements which have to be drilled through in order to reach the leaking pipes.

“We have to dig down about a metre,” Greg explains. “The work can be dangerous and I have known people get injured. Luckily health and safety are a bit better these days but really, you just have to be sensible and stay alert, like in any job.”

The boys have distinctive workwear, too, which is fortunately nothing like Sherlock’s deerstalker and cape or Starsky’s baggy cardigan. As you would expect they need waterproof overalls, goggles, earmuffs and hard hats but they also, surprisingly, need fire-retardant outfits, too, in case they hit an electric cable by mistake.

Such an extensive wardrobe requires a lot of upkeep and Greg was thrilled to receive a Uniform Tax Rebate of more than £400 towards the costs of cleaning his clothes. In fact, it was Dennis’ wife, who works at a care home, who told him about the Uniform Tax Rebate.

“My clothes get so muddy, I should have claimed for a couple of washing machines as well!” he laughs.

How to claim: You can use the handy online calculator below to enter your details and make a claim within five minutes.